Today’s roundup starts with news that Europe’s economic struggles could hurt U.S. small business owners and includes a story on how urban centers can cultivate minority entrepreneurs and a piece on uneasy feelings around small business crowdfunding.
It’s hard not to cringe when watching the economic downfall of Europe. But should U.S. entrepreneurs panic that the same thing will happen stateside? Not exactly, writes J.D. Harrison of The Washington Post. Instead, the biggest concern is a potential pushback from U.S.-based VCs. They may soon start worrying about the possibility of a European-like disaster here at home and, as a result, pull back investments in early stage companies. Sigh…the struggle of the small business owner continues.
Greed is an ugly thing. Take the new concept of crowdfunding as an example—where small businesses can solicit investor funds online for startups. While this sounds great, what happens when the company facilitating your crowdfunding goes under or is shut down by the SEC? That is exactly what is happening to a few companies out there, as Angus Loten of The Wall Street Journal reports. The U.S. House of Representatives is tossing around a crowdfunding plans, but until something is solidified, cover your butt by checking your state’s regulations and only signing up with registered funding companies.
Sunday’s CNN program, Black in America: The New Promised Land, Silicon Valley, revealed that African Americans launch less than one percent of all technology startups. But as Colleen Debaise of Entrepreneur writes, this is can change. Urban centers—especially struggling ones like Detroit—can foster minority entrepreneurs by soliciting the support of nearby colleges and universities and bringing in local angel investors. Extra bonus: check out my article relating to the CNN special: Is Silicon Valley A Racist Community?
Facebook is in a world of hurt this week after newsfeeds were hacked and seemingly innocent links revealed porn and violent images. SBOs beware, as Heather Clancy ofallBusiness writes, these images may have infiltrated your business Facebook page. It might be best to suspend your page until Facebook resolves this issue.
VCs and small business owners notoriously butt heads over a series of issues, not the least of which is a company’s speed of success. But as Pamela Ryckman of The New York Times writes, there is a welcome breed of VCs coming to the forefront that emphasize with small business owners. These are the VCs who’ve previously worked as entrepreneurs themselves. With similar experience, investors are likely to want to help (rather than purge) a workforce to achieve desired results. How do you feel about VCs?
As the founder of your company, you rightfully hold a tremendous amount of pride. But as Larry Cheng of VentureFizz writes, that pride can translate into immaturity when exhibited in front of investors. Case and point: don’t refer to your company as ‘I’ when pitching an idea. Example: ‘I will grow 120 percent in the next year,’ ‘I will experience an increase of sales during the first quarter.’ While this does show your enthusiasm, it also shows that you see your company as not functioning without you, when in reality, the founder is only part of an organization.
Most Millennials don’t expect to get jobs right out of college. They know the economy is struggling, so they are getting creative. As Zack O’Malley Greenburg of Forbes writes, those persons born after 1980 are willing to start entrepreneurial ventures (such as food trucks) while waiting for something bigger to come along. Millennials: how are you keeping busy during your job search?
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