Crowdpower

Deadspin Launches Indiegogo Campaign, Asks America to Determine Market Value of Ryan Lochte DickPic

(Photo: Indiegogo)

“How Much Would You Pay To See A Photo Of Ryan Lochte’s Alleged Penis?” begs a headline on the irreverent sports blog, Deadspin. The post, which went up a little over an hour ago, is illustrated by a photo of Gawker Media employees clustered around a computer screen looking (and laughing) at an alleged photo of Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte’s penis.

The pic, which is “a neck-down bathroom-mirror self-portrait, in which the tip of the penis almost but not quite reaches into the sink basin,” was provided by a source, who is demanding a fee. Deadspin has decided to start a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo, probably because Kickstarter doesn’t consider dickpics “art” (subjective!). Read More

Venture Capitalism

How VCs Can Accelerate Portfolio Company Returns

Mr. Teten

This guest post was written by David Teten, Koen Bremer, Gyorgy Buslig, and Adham Hussein. David is a Partner with ff Venture Capital and Founder and Chairman of Harvard Business School Alumni Angels of Greater New York.  Koen, Gyorgy, and Adham are all Columbia Business School MBA 2012 students and former consultants with McKinsey and BCG.

Even the best VCs and entrepreneurs have a painfully high failure rate.  Lowering that failure rate would be highly impactful on venture capitalist returns, if we could figure out how to do it.  In addition, in light of increasing competition in the startup funding space, a methodology  for helping portfolio companies consistently is a strong competitive advantage. Read More

Venture Capitalism

ff Venture Capital Quietly Raised a $27 M. Fund Last November and Has Already Invested in 23 Startups

Screen shot 2012-02-17 at 11.10.59 AM

ff Venture Capital has been giving new meaning to word stealth mode. Tucked into an interview on TechCrunch yesterday was the news, reported for the first time, that the New York City-based seed investment firm had raised a $27 million fund last November. What’s more, it had already invested in 23 companies and expected to finish its goal of 30 to 40 companies perhaps by the end of the year.

According to ff Venture’s—the fund insists on the cummings-style “ff”—Form D filing, which sneakily offers a Roseland, New Jersey address, rather than its Midtown headquarters, the company filed an intent to raise on November, 29, 2010. Partner John Frankel says the firm was already deploying capital from the new “silver” fund even as it was raising the dough. Of the 23 investments, which includes startups like Klout, ThinkNear, Livefyre, Voxy, and Kohort, four have had up rounds. “So, it looks like performance is accelerating,” he told Erick Schonfeld in a video interview.

But ff has another feather in their cap, their previous $6.3 million fund, raised in 2008 “two months after Lehman collapsed,” as Mr. Frankel, a Goldman Sachs refugee, points out. According to him, Prequin ranked that fund, called “ff blue,” the top-performing VC fund through the end of 2010. Read More

Tech Meetups

There Is Now a Meetup for New York Venture Capitalists With Preteen Kids

daddydaycare

Is it possible for a networking event to jump the shark? If so, meetups may be very close.

In Adrianne Jeffries’ feature this week on start-up fever affliciting New Yorkers with a bad case of  wantrepreneurship, we listed what we thought was already a high number of networking spinoffs from the original New York Tech Meetup. Dumbo Tech Breakfast, UWS Startup Meetup, and the New York Technology Bathhouse Meetup come to mind. But none of the options on that growing list meets the particular specifications of ff Venture Capital’s David Teten. He and venture partner Mike Yavonditte from Hashable are launching “a periodic Meetup for people who work in the innovation community and who are parents of pre-teen children.” Sorry, Fred Wilson, your kids are too grown.

On Business Insider, Mr. Teten writes, “We envision organizing activities that our kids, partners, and we will all jointly enjoy.” Read More

Welcome to New Fit City

That’s It. We’re Calling It. The Healthy Start-Up Office Craze Is Official.

PERFECT

When GroupMe co-founder Steve Martocci threw out his desk chair for a Bosu ball to lose “the founder fifteen,” we had an inkling it was only the beginning. After all, at least some of those early Fitocracy adopters had to be coming from inside the tech scene. Then we found out Michael Galpert–Aviary’s own, personal self-quantifying fiend–was trying to foster (healthy!) competition in the workplace through a shared employee database measuring weight loss down to the pound.

But ff Venture Captial partner David Teten has really gone and done it. He emailed Betabeat to let us know that that ff’s new ergonomically-optimized 5,000 sq. ft. office space on 6th Avenue can basically tell GroupMe’s single Bosu ball can suck it, although not in so many words. Read More

Angelic Cabals

Deadline to Join Harvard Business School Angels

cambridge angel

The Harvard Business School Angels of New York, an early-stage fund founded in 2011, seeks Harvard and non-Harvard investors to join its ranks. HBS Angels started over three years ago in Northern California but recently opened a New York chapter. The group does invest in companies that have no Harvard affiliation, and a fair amount of them. “We generally see at least 40 to 50 deals per quarter,” the group’s website says.  Read More