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As normal at this time of the year we look back at the year, we are leaving behind. At the same time, we try to predict the year in front of us, which is tough or most of the time sometimes impossible. I have collected some articles that seek to look into the crystal ball and maybe can give us some notion on the road ahead.
Michael J. de la Merced – The New York Times
– The amount of money that flowed into start-ups in the United States fell in 2016 for the first time in four years as the number of deals struck tumbled to their lowest levels since 2011, but the technology world has high hopes that 2017 will prove to be brighter.
Jessica Stillman – Inc.
– Let’s not mince words, changing your life is hard. Really hard. That’s why more than 90 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail.
Matt Weinberg, Eugene Kim & Julie Bort – Business Insider
– Companies spent an estimated $3.4 trillion on business tech in 2016. With that kind of money, the business technology market has created some of the most powerful people in tech this year.
Maddie Stone – Gizmodo
– On the climate and energy front, 2016 was a year of contradictions. Again and again, our planet smashed global temperature records. The fingerprints of climate change were visible in extreme weather from the North Pole to Louisiana.
Kevin Daum – Inc.
– The end of the year is a time for reflection. Many greats were lost in 2016: thinkers, creators, scientists, entertainers, and philosophers–no major field of endeavor was untouched by loss in the last 12 months.
Arjun Kharpal and Seamus Conwell – CNBC
– The last 12 months have been full of major technology stories from Samsung’s exploding phone saga to the speculation around and eventual end to the acquisition of Twitter.
Investor’s Business Daily
– This new year may be as unpredictable as any, but here are 10 key issues and challenges to watch that will affect your investments and the economy.
Happy New Year!
Angel Investor Startup Digest is curated by Berg Moe.
Global Entrepreneurship Week is a celebration of the innovators and dreamers, who launch startups that bring ideas to life, drive economic growth and expand human wellbeing. During one week each November, GEW inspires people everywhere through local, national and global activities designed to help them explore their potential as self-starters and innovators. Read more about GEW at http://gew.co/gew/about
– GEW South Africa Kicks off A New Chapter. Read more.
– Young Entrepreneurs: Role Models for the New World of Work. Read more.
– GEW Investors: American Investment Officer Talks Untapped Potential in African Startups, Workforce. Read more.
VC4A – Venture Capital for Africa
– The theme for this years Summit is “Co-investing, making it work together.” With Nigeria now officially in a recession and most major economies suffering form low commodity prices, working together is the only way forward to unlock capital fast and maximize Africa’s entrepreneurial potential.
Creative Business Cup
– This year’s Creative Business Cup will be held November 20-21, in Copenhagen. 70 National partners have already joined us and are busy planning their National competition in the search for their National Winner.
– During one week each November, GEW Oslo inspires people through activities designed to help them explore their potential as self-starters and innovators.
Ewan Gaffney – Uk.gew.co/
– GEW started life in the UK and has grown into the world’s largest festival of entrepreneurship. Today the campaign is managed by GEWUK – an independent charity.
– Meet all the persons – from corporate innovators to investors, to talent and fans – you need to be successful, in just one day.
– More than 15,000 entrepreneurs will come together for over 200 events November 11-13 & 18-20 for Global Startup Weekend!
– On The Road is a contest that helps give you an inside look at some of the rock star entrepreneurs and small businesses across Canada, as well as showcase some of the great events and initiatives that are happening during Global Entrepreneurship Week in November.
– Future Agro Challenge provides a platform unifying startups, investors, and other stakeholders. The FAC community focuses global awareness, innovation, and dialogue towards finding solutions for the global challenges ahead.
– Richard Branson is one of the speakers at Disrupt INCmty in Mexico City this year. They are bringing together thousands of key entrepreneurs, investors, and organizations of the entrepreneurship ecosystem to share knowledge, create, and stimulate high-impact companies and initiatives, promoting innovating entrepreneurship.
Every Friday we send out a newsletter to more than 8000 Angel Investors around the world, once in a while I post some news here so you maybe can see the value of subscribing. Here you have some of the posts I have been reading the last couple of days and hope you find some relevant stories. Sign up for Angel Investor Startup Digest today.
The most exciting experience this week was getting contracted to a speaker at Wolves Summit next month. This is the fourth edition of the biggest multinational startup event in Central and Eastern Europe. It focuses on networking and has a goal to build a bridge between investors, corporations, and promising startups.
Did you know that 500 Startups is shouting down their activity in Oslo and that Sean Percival is leaving? I am not sure what’s boiling here, but I keep you posted. Anyhow, earlier this week Are Traasdahl founder of Tapad launched his idea setting up an early stage fund of 1,2 billion USD and got standing ovations for his initiative.
As a curator, I want feedback on what you think should be the focus of this newsletter, and I promise your voice will be heard. Please send me the exciting news, deals, tools, etc. and if you are on Twitter feel free to connect at @vikinangels.
Mariann Hudson – Forbes
– Angels love the thrill of the hunt. We like learning how entrepreneurs are going to change the world or which is the new Unicorn that will go public and bring a 100X return. Perhaps this is why many stories about early-stage investing focus on the first part of angel investing – finding good deals, negotiating good terms, and due diligence.
Kevin Scott – HeraldScotland
– EQUITY Gap, a Scottish business angel syndicate, has reported strong investment activity in the first half of 2016. The syndicate has completed investment deals in include Insignia Technologies, Synaptec, Appointedd, Shotscope and Vert Rotors. The syndicate has rapidly grown from 15 original founders to 100 members, completing over 50 rounds of funding, since 2010.
Aniruddha Malpani – Inc24
– One of the big concerns about investing in a startup is the lack of liquidity, which means once you put in money, you’re pretty much locked in until a “liquidity event” occurs. Most angels want an outsize return on their investments, because this is a high-risk asset class, and you invest in it because you expect to get a high return in exchange for taking on that additional risk.
Will Little – Techstars Blog
– In the previous post of this series, we described what financial modeling is and why it is important for startup founders to build their own models from scratch. Today, we’ll begin by diving into how to practically start building a financial model.
Varun Arora – TechCircle
– Dheeraj Jain, managing partner at London-based investment firm Redcliffe Capital, is set to launch a $50 million early-stage fund to invest in technology startups in India and overseas.
Lora Kolodny – TechCrunch
– Signia Venture Partners has closed its second fund at $85 million to lead early-stage deals in emerging tech startups mostly in and around San Francisco. For the unfamiliar, Signia is typically the first money in and the lead investor in the companies it backs, writing $1-2 million in seed stage deals or $2-8 million in later stage rounds.
Angel Investor Startup Digest is curated by:
Berg Moe, Idea Gardener, firstname.lastname@example.org
LinkedIn profile at https://www.linkedin.com/in/bergmoe
Today we learned that 500 Startups are shooting down their activities in Norway, Sean Percival leaves, and the rest of the team is moving to Sweden. They are one of the leading venture companies in the world and has invested more than 1.6 billion in approximately 1,400 companies.
– Sweden has a much greater appetite for risk, and they are much better at marketing, commercialization, and internationalization, says Sean Percival.
– When I tried to raise money for our 15 million USD fund in Norway, there were very few who understood how venture capital works. They did not understand the mechanisms and they did not understand how they got the money back.
For every conversation I had, I started on the minus side, and had to spend time just to get to the starting line, and then I have to continue to get them to invest, he said.
It is tragic that 500 Startups not got underway in Norway. What Sean says, pinpoint our problems related to culture and lack climate for cooperation across national borders inside Scandinavia.
What worries me most is that Norway can have branding issues in the environment in Silicon Valley. It’s like a little duck pond and rumors going fast. This for sure a downturn and emphasizes once again the importance of tax incentives for investors in Norway. I assume that key politicians realize the seriousness now. As entrepreneurs, we must also put pressure on the government.
Norway must have conditions that are competitive and that can secure that startup projects have an opportunity to get financing. I think it’s unreasonable that we give a lot of grants from Innovation Norway, only for the next turn see the company flag out to get investors.
Also, we must all demand that our politicians have a vision for this country? The last thing we need is more commissions and committees. We need action!
Source: Shifter.no, Lucas H. Weldeghebriel
Last week over 1000 foreign guests and I arrived in Tallinn for the Estonian ICT Week (27 May -3 June) including the “Industry 4.0 in Practice” conference and the “Green IT” seminar. I will write several blog post from my experience, but as a first taste, I will share a video with some of my pictures from the “Green IT” seminar and beautiful Tallinn.
ICT sector has been one of the most important industries in Estonia, starting with governmental e-services and ending with Estonian startups that are proved to have a global mindset.
Estonia is a tech advanced and agile society that gets things done fast. Therefore, a big effect is expected by encouraging the industrial and ICT sector to work together locally and internationally.
Recently, Malwarebytes, an internet security company founded in the US enlarged their office in Tallinn, because of the excellent location and awesome IT vibe. People from different corners of the world are traveling to work in Tallinn, and they expect to have 60 people in the office very soon.
If you want more information about moving your company to the heart of Europe or investing, you should contact Estonian Investment Agency (EIA), a part of Enterprise Estonia, is a government agency promoting foreign investments in Estonia and assisting international companies in finding business opportunities in Estonia.
If you want to learn more about opportunities in Estonia, you may enjoy my post “9 reasons for doing business with Estonia”.
By Berg Moe, posted originally at LinkedIn Pulse, June 5, 20.
Pictures: Berg Moe. LinkedIn profile at https://www.linkedin.com/in/bergmoe
After been massively inspired by Chris Anderson’s great book released May 4, I have decided to ditch most of what I had preached and sold as the only true way to successful investor pitching. TED Talks is a must for everybody who are speakers, planning to do a talk or simply want to learn more about public speaking.
Chris Anderson has worked behind the scenes with all the TED speakers who have inspired us the most. He has in his book shares insights from such favorites as Sir Ken Robinson, Amy Cuddy, Bill Gates, Elizabeth Gilbert and dozens more — everything from how to craft your talk’s content to how you can be most effective on stage.
Learn more about the book and read other reviews at Amazon.com
I just wish that I could have had the opportunity to read this book before I did my TEDx talk in Bergen in 2014. Yes, I was informed about the format and did not extend my limited time of 18 minutes, but I was not well prepared, and my thru line was unclear. I also did som repetitions throughout the presentation. I had a lot of very positive feedback on my approach, and many of my predictions regarding the decline in the oil and gas sector in Norway have come through, but I am hundred percent sure I would have done better today after listening to TED Talks Audible version for totally 450 minutes.
The main idea behind a 4 – 7 minute is to cover most of the stuff that investors traditionally are looking at in their screening. The main subjects are the business concept, business model, team and why it will succeed, niche of the market, competitive advantages, uniqueness regarding intellectual property, traction, simplified financials, capital need and exit strategy.
My focus in preparing my next investor pitch will be to tell as story, concentrate at giving, unlocking empathy, stirring excitement, sharing knowledge and promoting our dream. Is it possible to do this and the same time gives the investors what they want? Yes, I think so. If I can provide the audience with the desire to learn more and meet us in the next break or networking, I believe that we have succeeded.
The battle of NYC has also started here at my office, and I am planning to fly in the first week of May to participate in Seed Forum, May 5.
More info about the event at http://www.seedforumnyc.com/
The video underneath is my production based on pictures from Seed Forum Milan and visualizes the energy I want to see in a great pitch. On stage Dr. Eythor Ivar Jonsson, Seed Forum Italy & Iceland.
Turn up the volume and sign up for my newsletter at https://app.convertkit.com/landing_pages/39338.
Most Norwegian are shocked looking at what is going on in American politics these days. Even the thought that Donald John Trump can end up at the White House is something we have huge problems understanding. Can Michale Moore’s new documentary give us some answers?
At the same time, we see that The Kauffman Foundation suggests policies that protect against entrepreneurial risks and economic hazards (and as they say it) might encourage more people to start companies. Is it even possible to raise such a debate in the complicated political landscape we see in the USA today? In Norway, we know it is critical to have robust safety nets to motivate people to take risks. The region has implemented “the concept of WE” with great success, wich I think is one of the key findings in “Where to invade next.”
Norway is very dependent on America both economically, as a superpower and allied, but maybe most important as a universal defender of some of the most important values in our society as freedom of speech, religion, and free enterprise. With great interest (especially from me) my son and I went to the screening room.
I know that most Americas also have problems understanding how the Norwegian model functions. Very often you hear the word “communists” used by most right-wing Republicans. Our two countries have very close bonds but are at the same time so different. Have a look at this interview with Michael Moore that maybe puts it all into perspective?
After we left screening the conclusion from my son was simple;
I am surprised that the American are treating their own people the way they do, but I still want to go there. My favorite city is Miami.
…and then we talked a lot and still have great discussions going on and he even involved his mom in the dialog. Where is the US going and is there some light in the tunnel?
Following the presidential campaign in the media it looks like the Americans also are struggling to understand what is going on and where the country is heading;
Anger at Wall Street. Anger at Muslims. Anger at trade deals. Anger at Washington. Anger at police shootings of young black men. Anger at President Obama. Anger at Republican obstructionists. Anger about political correctness. Anger about the role of big money in campaigns. Anger about the poisoned water of Flint, Mich. Anger about deportations. Anger about undocumented immigrants. Anger about a career that didn’t go as expected. Anger about a lost way of life. Mob anger at groups of protesters in their midst. Specific anger and undefined anger and even anger about anger.
Source: Washington Post – Looking for America , Part 1, By David Maraniss and Robert Samuels.
There is a campaign to deliver a bid for GEC 2019 – The Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Oslo, and maybe if the region wins this battle we should use this opportunity to sell the Norwegian/Scandinavian model and “the concept of WE”? I think both the world and especially America need to know there are alternative roads ahead. We are for sure not perfect here in Norway, but we have some best practices the rest of the world should be aware. And by the way, it was all “made in America”, that gives us all the decisive touch we need to keep up the optimism.
By Berg Moe, March 30, 2016. Serial Entrepreneur, Angel Investor, Chairman Norwegian Entrepreneurs Association Oslo, GEW organizer and TEDx speaker.
Personally, I love Estonia and have been there 27 times since 2003 and here are the main reasons why you also should consider taking the trip to Tallinn.
View from Oleviste. Photo by Tony Bowden
Estonia is one of the fastest growing economies in Europe over the last decade. Both sales and sourcing possibilities bring Norwegian companies here. There is a good access to EU markets, including 85 million inhabitants in the Baltic Sea Region. The business environment is competitive: highly educated workforce, advanced technologic environment, low taxes.
Nordic countries are the largest investors and trading partners for the Baltic region, Norway has made the fastest growth over the last years. Today, there are over 1000 companies with Norwegian capital and thousands of Norwegian companies with business partners in the Baltics.
Nordic countries are the largest investors and trading partners in the Baltic region, and Norway has made the fastest growth over the last years. Today, there are over 1000 companies with Norwegian capital and thousands of Norwegian companies with business partners in the Baltics.
Estonia is geographically and culturally close to Nordic countries. 75% of Norwegian businesses in the Baltics and Poland are satisfied/very happy with the results according to Deloitte study.
Europe is number 1 market for Norwegian green business globally, as this sector depends on public regulations. The Baltics have EU regulations in combination with extensive EU funding, which are the drivers for the development of the market.
IT cooperation has grown primarily with Estonia, who has focused Norway Grants on green IT – IT for energy, transport, and logistics, production and trade, e-health. These IT subsectors are critical for solving local challenges, as well have global growth potential according to a Ernst & Young study.
Today, Estonia is regarded as one of the most advanced e-governments in the world.
The use of technology and digital services is widespread in both the public and the private sector.
Estonia is the first country to offer e-Residency (a digital identity) to anyone interested in administering business online. e-Residents can digitally sign documents and contracts, verify the authenticity of signed documents, conduct e-banking and remote money transfers.
Estonia’s tax system is unique and the most competitive tax code in the OECD. First, it has a 20 percent tax rate on corporate income that is only applied to distributed profits. Second, it has a flat 20 percent tax on individual income that does not apply to personal dividend income. Third, its property tax applies only to the value of land rather than taxing the value of real estate or capital. Finally, it has a territorial tax system that exempts 100 percent of the foreign profits earned by domestic corporations from local taxation, with few restrictions. More at http://taxfoundation.org/article/2015-international-tax-competitiveness-index
Picture: Tony Bowden under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)