Copycats versus disruptors in Latin America

A majority of the most successful startups coming out of Latin America have fallen under the “copycat” business model. On the other hand, there’s been a rise in truly disruptive ideas coming out of Latin America, as well. Certainly, “copycat” startups can be innovators, but not all innovators are disruptors. Read More

Africa Roundup: eBay expands, Google CEO visits Lagos, Ghana enters space

 eBay opened up its U.S. platform to Africa through its partnership with MallforAfrica.com. Americans can now buy products on eBay from select vendors in six African countries, starting with merchandise categories of fashion, art, jewelry, and clothing.
For the new program, MallforAfrica selects the sellers and handles payments on its proprietary platform. DHL is the shipping partner. Online… Read More

Tech companies automate autocratic media in China around the world

 When big tech bends its principles to limbo into Chinese markets, it encourages other Western companies and institutions to do so as well. Read More

Is Symantec getting ready to buy Splunk?

 Yesterday, Symantec CEO of Symantec, Greg Clark flexed his M&A biceps, saying that Splunk could be an attractive target at a $9+ billion valuation. Clark definitely plans to go whale hunting to regain Symantec’s long lost security position. Symantec expects to grow 3% to 5% in 2018. Compare that to Splunk – which projects to grow upwards of 20% this year and generate $1.2… Read More

The secret language of chatbots

 Give a journalist a buzzword and you’ve fed him for a day. Give a journalist a topic to investigate and you feed the industry for years. Especially when the topic is a sci-fi trope like AI. And if massive social upheaval is not enough to scare the public, there is always the robot uprising. The latest episode was an experiment on Facebook that had two chatbots “inventing a… Read More

Cap tables, share structures, valuations, oh my! A case study of early-stage funding

 For many entrepreneurs, especially first-time founders, raising outside capital can be daunting. Between all of the new vocabulary and the very real legal implications of the agreements being signed, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Indeed, raising outside money is one of the more esoteric aspects of being an entrepreneur — but it doesn’t need to be confusing. Read More

Why ‘TAM’ doesn’t matter to me

 When you ask a VC what they look for in investments, you’re likely to get a response that involves going after a large “total addressable market.” On the surface, the use of TAM as a key investment criteria makes sense. The only problem is that if you had applied the TAM framework over the past 25 years, you would have passed on most of the best venture investments of all time. Read More

Consumer internet startups go mainstream outside of Silicon Valley

 In the past year, New York has reached a tipping point as consumer-facing startups proliferate and similarly Los Angeles is gaining notice with the success of Snap and Dollar Shave Club among others. Read More