The Equity of the Crowds

Projects on Kickstarter Four Times More Likely to Get VC Funding Than Indiegogo Campaigns

(Photo via Espen Sundve)

Crowdfunding began as a cool way for your college roommate to raise money to finally record his first album, but has quickly gone on to be a bigger part of how the tech industry does business.

CB Insights, a research analytics firm that bills itself as the “OkCupid for venture vapitalists,” has released the first study of crowdfunding’s growing role as a serious part of the tech business. The survey took a look at every crowdfunded tech hardware project on either Indiegogo or Kickstarter, which came out to 443 projects. Read More

Sex in the Valley

The Number of Big-Name Female Hires at Kleiner Perkins Since Ellen Pao’s Lawsuit Just Doubled

Ms. Tilenius (Photo: LinkedIn)

The latest addition to the Kleiner Perkins team, according to AllThingsD: Google’s Stephanie Tilenius, who’ll be a new executive-in-residence. And we can’t help but notice that she’s the second splashy female hire since Ellen Pao filed her molotov cocktail of a discrimination suit. Last month, the firm poached Square’s head of product, Megan Quinn. Read More

Adventures in Venture Capital

What’s the Worst Part of Being a VC? ‘The High Asshole Factor,’ Apparently

(rso.cornell.edu)

An interesting question showed up in our Quora digest email this afternoon. “What is the worst part of being a VC?” one user wondered. No, “sexism” wasn’t one of the answers, but apparently there are quite a few grievances for the partners on Sand Hill Road. The main complaint? Turns out there sure are a lot of assholes in the VC business.

An anonymous poster who claims to be “a VC general partner for nearly 10 years at a large brand name fund” posted the following missive: Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: VCs Waxing Philosophic Edition

Mr. Graham (flickr.com/pragdave)

Startup soothsayer Paul Graham penned a letter to Y Combinator’s portfolio companies about withstanding the fallout from Facebook’s poorly-performing IPO. [Business InsiderHacker News]

Fred Wilson wants to put Mr. Graham’s musings in perspective. [A VC]

Apple will yank Google Maps from iPhones later this year, which is just another reason why we’re quite happy with our Galaxy Nexus, thankyouverymuch. [Wall Street Journal]

GigaOm rounds up what we know about Shawn Fanning and Sean Parker’s video startup, Airtime, set to launch at a press event this morning. [GigaOm]

Oh good, there is an Instagram for animated GIFs. [Wired]

Acqui-hires

What Obligation do Startup Founders Owe Their Investors?

What did you sign?

This is a guest post from Eric Wiesen, a general partner at RRE. It originally appeared on his blog.

The recent acquisition of Gowalla by Facebook is just the latest incidence of the potential tension between investors and founders when a company is acquired primarily for the team rather than for the technology, product or business that they’ve built. People around the web will take the opportunity to observe that in situations where a company is acquired in this way, the founders typically get a package of equity to motivate them to join (and remain at) the acquiring company, while investors usually get anywherefrom zero to a small return on invested capital. Look around and you’ll find people willing to condemn the founders for unethically “selling out” their investors and you’ll find people who say the exact opposite, that such a company didn’t have saleable assets anyway, and so investors are owed nothing because the business failed. Read More

Summer Jamz

Taking VC Money (Money, Cash, IPOs) [SICK BEAT]

Smixx

Amazing new track from Corey Smith, aka Smixx, a musician, freelance iOS/WP7 developer and co-founder of Cardinal social music sharing platform. Smixx has been spinning tech raps for a while now, like “Developers feat. Steve Ballmer” and “One More Thing featuring Steve Jobs from WWDC 2011.”

But start-ups are where Betabeat’s heart really lies, so this track was the first to catch our attention. That, and @aplusk tweeted it out. Enjoy below the jump. Read More