Archive for 'Funding'
Since taking over Citizen Space in 2011 I have been on a mission to secure some perks for our members that will make Citizen Space membership not just a great place to work, but a great “network” to be connected to!
Today we are happy to announce that starting on International Coworking Day all members who travel to NYC will have a place to work while on the road thanks to our pals @Fueled Collective NYC, and any Fueled Collective member now has a place to call home away from home in SOMA.
Citizen Full, and Citizen Lite members will enjoy $25 a month in Task Rabbit credits. This is great for simple tasks to help you on your path link laundry services, grocery shopping, and even data entry.
All Citizen Space members already enjoy a rate for rooms at the W in San Francisco of $259, and $299. This rate is last room availability. Guest room rates are subject to our state tax of 15.62 %. The W Hotel average regular non member rates range is $549.00 – $579.00. Preferred rates are applicable to single or double occupancy and will be confirmed based on the specific room inventory available at the time a reservation is made. Call our member services desks for more info at 415-501-9155
Please drop in all week for free day passes , and come celebrate 7 years of coworking this Friday all day!
“A Nicer Place to Work”
I mustache you to switch to Uber.
Standing outside of Citizen Space, the birthplace of coworking, I see an infographic style ad billboard drive by encouraging me to “shave the stache”.
For weeks I have been waiting on Kanye’s response to Ray J’s “I hit it first” single but now that Uber has taken a direct shot at Lyft, my attention is on the private driver services.
This is the first direct attack I have seen to date and it raises a bunch of interesting questions. How will Lyft respond to this? Is this a good move by Uber? Is Uber willing to say they will quit driving forever if they don’t outsell Lyft like 50 said he would quit rapping forever if he didn’t outsell Kanye?
I guess the best we can do is sit back and watch this play out!
Nick Ochoa, Mingle Media
Yes, there’s a lot to like about ‘lean’ startup methods. But don’t gulp it without question.
I’ve been following–or practicing–“cutting edge” business methods for longer than I want you to know. Try this. You’re familiar with “agile development,” right? But how about quality circles? Or Total Quality Management? How’s about Six Sigma? I’ve lived through them all. And I can attest to the fact they all shared something in common with the latest “lean startup” methodologies buzzing around the cubicles, incubators, and co-working spaces we inhabit: All promised revitalization, growth, and great, good fortune.
But those early panaceas did something else: They came, and then they went.
So whenever I encounter a similar silver bullet these days I just wanna reach for one–as in the kind that stars in a beer commercial. If I popped the top on a cold one every time I heard someone say “pivot,” “persevere,” and “minimum viable product” I’d have a drinking problem.
Those are terms popularized by Eric Ries in his best-selling book, “The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses.” You must know him. He currently enjoys guru status in entrepreneurial circles. He’s been lionized most recently in a Wired magazine profile, which also noted how his philosophy is currently making its way out of the startup scene and into big blue-chip companies such as General Electric. Even Harvard Business School is offering a course based on his work.
I’ve read the book. I’ve recommended some of its practices. I’ve embraced some too as my own startup conceives, develops, and consults to technology-fueled media startups. I confess I concur with the precept at the heart of the lean approach: Even the most brilliant and experienced people don’t know enough to outwit newly emerging, rapidly changing, and increasingly complex markets, especially when it comes to products and business models without precedent. That’s especially why a startup is based more on faith and less on fact. The market hasn’t spoken. As a result, the only prudent way to give birth to a business is to test and test and test. According to Ries, it’s about deploying the same scientific method we learned in grade school: State a hypothesis and then experiment to prove it.
Humility counts. This inherently more humble approach to business represents a refreshing contrast to the entrepreneurial hubris that typically struts its stuff down the streets of Palo Alto. Or the egotism that fills executive suites throughout the business world, for that matter. I’ve personally been witness to monumental miscalculations by the best and brightest who couldn’t have been more certain of themselves, what with their MBAs, lofty titles, fat salaries, and corporate perks.
Still, I’m just not–n-o-t, not–willing to become a flag-waving member of the lean startup “movement,” which Ries started calling it as soon as Page 14 of his book. A movement? Really? Like civil rights? Environmentalism? The Arab Spring?
When someone touts a practice as a movement that’s the telltale sign of fad surely destined to fade because it invariably over-promises.
While they’re rare, others refuse to guzzle the zero-calorie Kool-Aid, too. The Wired profile pointed out one certainly worth noting: Respected Silicon Valley venture capitalist Ben Horowitz who’s said in his own blog post that, to hell with skinny, startups need to be fat–monied and rapaciously profligate enough to dominate a market before someone else does.
Brit fit. One of the most outspoken and quotable curmudgeons I found lives from Silicon Valley–in Surrey, South of London, in fact. Maybe distance makes the head grow stronger, because 47-year-old Nick Pelling, a serial entrepreneur, pulls no punches. Consider his screed on the 10 reasons why “lean startups suck”
For all its reliance on the scientific method, Pelling declares that “lean” isn’t science at all; it’s only validation is anecdotal. But Pelling’s main rap is that it’s naive. “A lean startup is only really self-fundable,” he says. And the reason is that, in the real world, people aren’t willing to give their money to someone who wants to conduct “experiments” with it. Instead, someone willing to stake a business wants confidence, comfort, and proof you know what you’re doing
“What kind of a ‘contract’ can you have with a business angel by taking this approach?” Pelling asks. “It’s a key disconnect with the way people actually behave.” The sources of capital “don’t want to fund your industrial education,” he says, concluding that Ries doctrines “are much more about learning than about leaning.”
I’m not as strident. There are “lean” methods and tactics you might well find applicable and fruitful. Nevertheless, I won’t, and you shouldn’t, take the approach for what it’s not—and it’s not a silver bullet. There’s only one of those that delivers on its promise, and I’m about to pop the top on it right now.
Patrick Houston is the co-founder of MediaArchitechs. He is a former SVP for a new media startup, a GM at Yahoo, and editor-in-chief at CNET.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Skystream Markets Inc., a provider of institutional transaction platforms
for the renewable energy markets, today announced an investment from LaunchCapital, a venture capital investor with offices in New Haven, Conn., Cambridge, Mass. and Palo Alto, Calif.
LaunchCapital joins an investment syndicate that includes Connecticut Innovations, Ironwood Capital Connecticut’s Connecticut Growth Fund, the Clean Energy Venture Group and several leading angel investors from the financial technology industry.
“LaunchCapital sees its investment in Skystream Markets as a foundational placement in the REC trading markets behind two highly experienced and passionate founders and their team,” said Konstantine Drakonakis, Director at LaunchCapital. “LaunchCapital is looking forward to assisting Skystream Markets as it executes its plan and scales this incredible opportunity.”
Skystream Markets acts as a neutral intermediary in the environmental market and does not take principal risk, thereby avoiding any conflicts of interest with customers. The team has deep expertise and a successful track record in building trading infrastructure in new markets that require service improvements to the entire trade cycle.
“We’re delighted to have a venture capital group of this caliber join our investment syndicate to help us build the company,” said Skystream Markets co-founder Naeem Hukkawala. “We plan to grow our innovative technology offering to provide the next generation of transaction platforms for the environmental trading markets” added Kapil Mohindra co-founder of Skystream Markets.
Skystream Markets is focused on the state level Renewable Portfolio standards, which form the basis of the primary tradable environmental market in the US, called Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). Each REC represents one Megawatt of renewable power.
Skystream Markets’ trading platform improves price discovery and market depth in both the primary and secondary REC markets. Skystream Markets serves institutional investors, including some of the largest renewable energy producers, utilities and commodities traders.
Last night over 70 people gathered to hear a panel moderated by Charles Hudson, a Venture Partner with SoftTech VC, talk about their experience bootstrapping, learning the importance of accountability, deciding what were the important metrics of success, and how to survive when things don’t go as well as hoped.
Christine Herron, Director with Intel Capital, Trevor Cornwell, the founder and CEO of appbackr inc., Danae Ringelmann, co-founder of IndieGoGo, and George Revutsky, the founder and CEO of MyNextCustomer all spoke eloquently about their experience.
We learned that mom can be the best angel investor when you need to get through that little hump, but be sure your arrangement has clear terms. We learned about risk, and the importance of maintaining strong relationships both personally and professionally.
Check out the photos on our facebook page, and look out for our next FailChat in the coming months!!