Archive for June, 2014

The Tech Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide by Bernd Schoner

June 22nd, 2014

You cannot really get any better advice on the world of technopreneur than a technology entrepreneur himself who has been there and done that.

The Tech Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide is a guide on how to boostrap your starup, lead it through tough times and making an exit (selling it) for a good price.

The author, Bernd Schoner is a graduate of the MIT Media Laboratory who cofounded ThingMagic, a tech startup focused on RFID. Ten years later the business was bought by Trimble Navigation, a multimillion dollar public technology company where he now serves as VP of Business Development. Over his ten years at ThingMagic Bernd learned all of the business lessons they don’t teach in engineering school.

In The Tech Entrepreneur’s Survival Guide, Bernd shares what he learned and what he wished he knew at the time. He explains the major phases in a technology company’s life cycle, helping entrepreneurs avoid common pitfalls and survive crises when they strike. He guides readers from the initial bootstrapping process through venture-capital financing and provides valuable advice on how to sell a technology company profitably–even in a challenging economic environment. Every chapter presents solutions to realworld issues that could otherwise have fatal consequences for a tech venture.

The chapters are organized into three major parts; Bootstrapping, Equity Funding and Exit.
Bootstrapping chapter provide readers some insights into starting a startup, if one is into entrepreneurship. Even with an interest or passion, a startup need important assets or resources, namely cofounders and key staff to bring about success for a startup. Early funding covers multiple options for a startup to obtain funds for further growth. The chapter also talks about getting legal resources to defend a startup as well as being an administrator of the organization.

Part 2 covers a lot of details into the option of further funding the tech company with shares and the hurdles in maintaining an equity based organization. Sound and valuable advices are given here as details are based on experience of ThingMagic in getting fundings.

The final part of the book has advices in helping entrepreneur with a startup exit, to get the best deal with the acquiring organization while maintaining the company’s operation without drastic changes having integrated into a larger organization. The best part of this chapter is its guide towards the right time for an exit.

Part 1

Should I or Should I not Venture Into Entrepreneurship?
Startup Assets
Early Funding

Part 2

Venture Deals
Raising a Down-Round

Part 3

Startup Dynamics in Crisis
Exit Strategies
Corporate Life

If you are a budding technopreneur, or even contemplating to be one, this is one book you should not really miss.
Even better if your startup is in the US, as the examples in this book are primarily for US startups but I would say that any technology startup founders should be able to benefit from the content in this book.
There are many books that I would recommend, but only selected few has extremely high value.
This is one of them.

Books, business, Software, Technology , ,

The Digital Mystique: How the Culture of Connectivity Can Empower Your Life – Online and Off by Sarah Granger

June 4th, 2014

Sarah Granger is a noted author, blogger, speaker and entrepreneur. Her work focuses on how the Internet and digital media is changing our lives and our world. Her first solo book, The Digital Mystique shares real-life stories and surprising facts about our lives—both online and off—to shed new and fascinating light on the positive effects of the digital media revolution, showing us how we can personally learn, grow, and thrive by engaging in our digitized world.
While this is Sarah’s first book, she has already written hundreds of articles and blogs, several scripts, and four chapters for collaborative books.

If you think this could be just another book about “digital world”, “social media” or the internet, you might want to read on.
Sarah got herself online at the age of nine, coding at by ten, and subsequently ran a message board at 14.
She got her email address at 17!
Truth be told, I was intrigued by this introduction more than its cover.

The chapters organized in the book:
Connecting Is Just the Beginning
Friending Is Trending
Love in the Time of Messaging
The Kids Are Online
The Senior Moment
The Passion of the Web
There’s No Business Like E-Business
Community Is the Key
The Difference a Tweet Makes
What We Leave Behind
A Stitch in Digital Time

This book is particularly useful for non techies as the reader would definitely learn more than the average tech user about the digital world.
The author gave many examples of her personal experience and most topics are from her own account.
By doing that, she is able to show her credibility in the digital world and as such has made the chapters more interesting.
Useful advice can be found, especially for people who have just discovered the web and got into the excitement mode. Readers could relate on how to establish an online identity and about the risk of over-sharing.
Personally, I like the chapters that cover the kids and seniors, especially how they could benefit from the digital technologies as well as its danger.
There is a chapter dedicated for e-business. Being a serial enterpreneur herself, the author is able to give many tips about doing online business the right way.
The book ends with how you could or should leave the world – both online and offline, leaving a legacy to people you know or may not know.
I also like the topic about how people should limit their online activity as to avoid getting into the social addiction trap where fear of missing out is apparent.

All in all, this an educational book as it provides content that have exceeded my expectation.
This book is beneficial for everyone to learn how to leverage the use of the digital world to our advantage and also to avoid the pitfalls of getting too much digital influence into our lives.

Books, Internet, Review ,