Lessons Learned: Bringing the Secrets of Silicon Valley to North Carolina

In early November, the Duke Angel Network (Duke Angels) hosted David Frazee, Managing Partner at Richmond Global Ventures and a leading expert on international entrepreneurship. David provided an entire weekend of Complete Startup Training and recourses related to equity funding and bringing the secrets of Silicon Valley to North Carolina.

Frazee had several key messages for companies that seek venture capital:

  • The same business fundamentals that make traditional businesses successful make growth ventures good investment opportunities.   This includes relentless focus on financial performance, differentiated value proposition, growing markets, solid strategy, sound corporate governance, and a great management team.
  • To be successful, you have to discover the customer problems and deliver them valuable solutions.
  • Investors seek companies that succeed or fail fast with recurring scalable revenue.
  • Go after multi-billion-dollar opportunities and create truly game changing business models that topple conventional expectations.
  • Urgency is your friend, make quick decisions and go as fast as possible, but not too fast.
  • Train employees to think like innovators and incentivize them by sharing in the equity upside.
  • Stay adaptable by eliminating ego and your attachment to your current bias about the business.
  • Learn to think like an investor, don’t do things that make your company toxic to investors, and prepare for the exit.

In upcoming Newsletter issues we will be discussing each of these key massages in more detail – so stay tuned!! Meanwhile reach out to us to discuss how these important points can help direct your business to become more investable.

Contributed by:  Mike Carnes, SBTDC

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