The Startup Advantage • TechCrunch
Welcome to Startups Weekly, this week’s newsletter detailing startup news and trends by Senior Correspondent and Equity co-host Natasha Mascarenhas. To get this in your inbox, subscribe here.
Sometimes, due to the nature of the starter game, we index the “new”. Companies that want to build pain points you never dreamed would break; VCs want to invest in an emerging trend before it becomes a household name; and those who break into technology are asked to rely on their seriousness, because you never know who will answer your cold emails. For entrepreneurship to feel exciting and welcome – not even, but felt – the new needs to be one of its most prominent characteristics.
After all, you only get to be “it” once.
But one question that I’ve asked myself over the past year, especially as some of the more seniors talk about past recessions and cyclical lessons learned, is it to the advantage of others. come later. This is somewhat obvious: When you’ve done this entire business before, you’ll understand the mistakes to avoid and seamlessly know which investors to avoid.
But it’s also not an easy part of a story. There is a difference between the novice and the inexperienced, just as there is a difference between the experienced and the latecomer. How do you know where you are on that entire timeline — especially when you feel better about telling stories at the extremes?
This week on Equity, I interviewed T2 co-founder Sarah Oh, who is building a Twitter rival after working at Twitter as a human rights consultant. Very quickly, I asked her how building a copy of the old company made you feel. She didn’t seem to mind, and I quickly said: All are fair in love and moderation.
But the better answer Oh gave me was around the latecomer advantage she had, building a company in a world she knew so well. By joining the social wave of today’s consumers than before anyone thought of characters and retweets, the co-founder thinks they get more nuanced.
“There’s a lot we know about the reliability and safety gap in the industry, whether it’s the datasets we need or the models we need to build or certain standards that need to exist for our projects. model, that’s right, there’s a long list of things that I wish I had in roles that didn’t exist before, now we’re in a place where we can talk to each other,” Oh speak. She added that when some of the first social media platforms were created, no “case study or historical precedent” for so many of the controversies currently exists. With some ugliness – my words, not hers – T2 has examples it can refer back to on how to handle the stresses around virality, doxxing, etc.
It just got me thinking about that broader understanding coupled with the agility of a startup. Possibly, the very old and the new can be the striking balance that helps a startup start up. In this case, we don’t know how old or new efforts at Twitter will play out, but we do know that the timing has never been more important.
In the rest of this newsletter, we’ll talk about inspirational executives, burgeoning startup promoters, and a rare rumor we’ve heard about a tech company and wish. of the mass market. As always, you can follow me on Twitter or Instagram.
Goodbye, inspirational director
Also on Equity this week, The group talked about how venture capitalists will pay more attention to how portfolio founders are spending capital — especially around hiring trends. Becca’s latest for TC+ — use code EQUITY to get 50% off your annual membership — find out why the job slide in the offer will no longer be a throwaway part of the presentation.
Expect more scrutiny.
Here’s why this is important: We know that companies are cutting staff to cut costs, but those that are hiring may have to take a more conservative approach in terms of both role type and salary. All that said, there are definitely talent opportunities if you’re hiring. But, it won’t be easy for all of talent gets fired to find their next gig, especially as employers look to hire cheaper talent with less ambitious HR goals.
Photograph of the Moon Goldilocks
NextView Ventures launched its fourth accelerator program, aiming to back about half a dozen founders with $400,000 in funding and mentoring opportunities. It also offers at least one position to a team built by former colleagues who were laid off during the last downturn.
Here’s why this is important: Accelerator partners are ready to support founders even if they have a half-baked idea or just an area they want to delve into. Even in a more disciplined market, there are some companies that are more comfortable seeding ideas than formal business ideas. “Almost half a step ahead of what we usually think of as investment firms,” said Rob Go, founding partner of NextView Ventures.
Finally, Stripe is also looking for a way out. The payments giant has set a 12-month deadline to go public, either through a direct listing or pursuing the transaction in a private market, such as a fundraising event and public bid, according to sources. familiar with the matter.
Here’s why this is important: I mean, do I have to be clear? The mass market for tech companies is old, unwelcome, let’s add the boring adjective here. If Stripe kicks off a trend, we’ll have an interesting year ahead. But some are unclear on the timeline. After all, easier said than done.
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I’ll close with the occasional reminder that I really enjoy participating in startup happy hours and VC dinners in San Francisco, so let me know if you’re throwing one! And if you’re still working on your social media like I am, I’m also available for a 1:1 coffee chat or a dumpling lunch.
For the rest of you, thanks for reading as always. The year 2023 has already passed, hasn’t it?