A few days ago, a first-time entrepreneur contacted me, asking that I advise him on such issues as employees vs. independent contractors, equity compensation, and the like. As we exchanged e-mails, however, I could see that there were fundamental business issues to which he had not given sufficient consideration. (more…)
In an article published yesterday (Start-Ups Will Keep Struggling in 2010), the Wall Street Journal reported that startup funding will remain tough to find in 2010.
The major problems:
- Most entrepreneurs use personal savings or contributions from friends and family, but personal wealth – often tied to the value of homes or stock portfolios – has not bounced back from the economic downturn.
- For both conventional bank loans and those insured by the Small Business Administration, entrepreneurs most show (a) that they have invested a significant amount of their own money and (b) solid cash-flow projections.
- During the first half of 2009, the total value of angel investments fell 30% compared to 2008; 2010 is expected to continue at the 2009 level.
- While venture capitalists are continuing to invest, they typically have been protecting later-stage companies already in their portfolios rather than funding startups.
The minor bits of good news:
- While angels are investing less per deal, the total number of deals increased during the first half of 2009 over 2008.
- Stimulus-related measures may increase SBA loans from 1% of all small-business lending to between 5% and 10%.
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