Business Startup

News Roundup: Pioneer Square Labs; Fantasy Sports; and Google’s OKR System

What we were reading last week at InVigor:

Prominent Seattle investors raise $12.5M for ‘startup studio,’ Pioneer Square Labs

6 alternative ways to fund your business without an investor

Traffic-boosting SEO fundamentals for content marketing

Fantasy sports operator, DraftKings, is being investigated by the U.S. Justice Department and FBI to determine whether daily fantasy games are a form of online gambling

The efficient internal system Google uses to grade its employees and their exemplary tips to being a great boss

A simple formula for changing behavior and to strengthen leadership

Photo: Yoel Ben-Avraham | Flickr

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Business Startup

News Roundup: Ride Sharing, Startups Cash In, Google Invests in SpaceX, etc.

Here’s a collection of the most interesting legal and business news we found this week:

Ride Sharing

One of the big issues facing Uber has to do with the fact that auto insurance policies for individual drivers generally don’t cover damages from commercial activity, including ride-sharing through applications like Uber and Lyft. In Colorado, USAA and Farmers are now offering ridesharing insurance. Colorado is a natural testing ground for these new types of policies, as Colorado became one of the first states to explicitly authorize ridesharing services in 2014.

Startups & Funding

The big news of the day is Box’s IPO. After a shaky ride through the IPO process, Box’s IPO appears to be an initial success. It is a home run for its...

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Business Startup

iVLG News Roundup Week 13 2014: Facebook Buys Oculus VR; Washington Passes Crowdfunding; Bitcoin Taxation

Facebook Buys Oculus VR; Non-equity Stakeholders Feel Slighted

After raising $2.4 million through a Kickstarter campaign that helped bring their virtual reality headset to real reality, Oculus VR sold to Facebook in a cash and stock deal worth $1.99 billion. The company announced it was joining Facebook because “[t]his partnership is one of the most important moments for virtual reality: it gives us the best shot at truly changing the world. It opens doors to new opportunities and partnerships, reduces risk on the manufacturing and work capital side, allows us to publish more made-for-VR content, and lets us focus on what we do best: solving hard engineering challenges and delivering the future of VR.”

The trajectory the company took to a $2...

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Corporate Finance & Securities

Taking a Look at the Washington State Crowdfunding Bill

As Gideon reported in last week’s news roundup, Substitute House Bill 2023 would bring crowdfunding to the state of Washington if it makes its way through the Washington legislature.

Background on Crowdfunding As a starting point, it’s worth noting what we mean here when we say “crowdfunding.” Crowdfunding is the exchange of company equity (usually stock) for cash from investors.

This can be contrasted with Kickstarter-type platforms where the person giving money to the company does not get stock, but instead gets some sort of swag or other tangible product in return. For example, a company may give a t-shirt in exchange for a small amount of cash from an individual.

Basics of Washington SHB 2023

All offerings would have to be either: (a) offered through a...

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Corporate Finance & Securities

Our Thoughts on the Proposed Crowdfunding Rules

Last week the SEC released proposed rules for non-accredited investor crowdfunding, which would let unaccredited investors (anyone) participate in securities offerings. What this means in plain English: when and if these proposed rules are enacted, companies will be able to raise up to one million dollars by selling stock to anyone willing to buy it, and for the first time they won’t have to do an IPO to be able to reach these investors.

Background Currently, to sell stock, companies have to:

File a registration statement and go through an IPO process that is generally prohibitively costly for all but the most successful companies; or Conduct a private placement offering that only accredited investors (individuals with $200k in annual income or over $1mm in...

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Business Startup

Is Revenue-Based Investing Changing the Investment Landscape?

Regardless of your position, entrepreneur or investor (or both), you’ve likely noticed that the investment landscape is changing. There’s a move away from traditional venture capital and institutional funding toward  micro-VC and super angel funds—smaller-scale versions of VC funds, typically in the $10-50 million range, that make a wider range of smaller investments.  Furthermore, due to the roller coaster nature of financial markets, exits are being drawn out longer  than the traditional three to five year range. This means angels are not seeing returns as quickly as they did in the 1990s and early 2000s. Not to mention, there’s another potential change on the horizon with the emergence of companies like kickstarter.com and recent legislation, including the JOBS Act which includes the CROWDFUND Act.

As a result,...

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