Rick King

Frustrated Investors

Investors are frustrated by the lack of customer traction and revenue they see in venture companies.  They especially don’t like finding out that there has been little customer engagement during product development and business planning.

Unfortunately, most tech entrepreneurs are unable to get access to enough customers or are not comfortable doing so and asking questions.  But it is exactly those answers that a venture needs to hear early on in order to succeed.  (PreFlight Ventures can provide these connections for you)

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Tips on Pursuing Corporate Partners & Making Deals Happen

1.  You can’t sell anything to anyone.  You have to help them buy.

2.  You must connect what you have into a current project or top management directive that they have.  Make them look good to their management and you will win.

3.  “The art of raising money is the art of reducing risk!”  This is even more essential to doing CP deals.

4.  Spend a lot of time learning about and talking about their customers — what problems trying to solve, how address now, their market pressures, requirement to get them to try new products, price sensitivity, etc.  This also build your relationship and trust with the CP.

5.  Corporate partner deals happen when you help them believe that you will grow their businessnot when you impress them with your technology.

6.  Keep in mind that corporate managers are first & foremost “employees”, and they rightfully will look out to protect their position in the company who pays them way before taking risk trying out your new innovation.


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The 2 Most Important Things to Teach Kids

The two most important things a parent can teach their child are:

a)  Faith (in someone and something greater than ourselves)

b)  Live Below Your Means (especially in this “new normal” of the global economy, wherein our children will be the first generation in America to live less well than their parents).

With these two tenets, everything else takes care of itself.  The attitudes, decisions, actions and relationships that result is a life filled with less fear and struggle and more with joy and hope.

Now that is a legacy worth investing in!

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Financials & Projections in the
Venture Game

Don’t spend too much time on your financials… no one believes them anyways.

The real purpose of the exercise is to:

-  force you and your team to do homework on all aspects of the business
-  define the business model and understand the economics
-  identify risks and missing data
-  ask hard Q’s and think through the real business keys.



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Entrepreneurs, especially technical ones, often claim that “we have no competition.” In addition to being a red flag for investors, this statement raises a more fundamental concern…

If you don’t have any competition, you don’t have a market! Either the customers is using an indirect competitive solution or they have decided that it is not a problem worth solving.

Entrepreneurs need to focus on the problem (from the customer’s perspective), and far less on the technology or intellectual property.

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