The majority of the readers of this website will appreciate that the majority of articles are focused on the needs of business community and the IT organisation that supports them and key decision makers. Few articles have been written from the viewpoint of the software vendor. I am changing that with this article, which looks at funding for the software entrepreneur. Please add any comments based on your experience, all views will be valuable to the community at large.
As I am in the process of funding a new venture I thought I would add my thoughts and observations of some of the things I have discovered. I shall not be adding any detail about my venture or that being worked on by others. Yet the funding situation is interesting.
In investigating possible sources of funding I have spoken with three CEO’s of venture capital (VC) funded solution providers that each have unique propositions in the marketplace and I remain grateful for their assistance. They know who they are, yet I have agreed not to identify them. The unified response was that about 11 months ago venture capitalists were meeting with software companies loaded with bagloads of money for those having a good idea, even if a poor business plan was presented. This is simply no longer the case as venture capital companies have become extremely cautious.
So now many great ideas are going unfunded? Sadly true.
In researching my own funding requirements I have also had a briefing from a VC ‘friend’ of a ‘friend’. He stated that getting funding is 2 or 3 times as difficult as it was 12 months ago. Now this may come as bad news for software startups, but it has allowed me to go in with my eyes open to any future funding discussion.
In preparing for this article I have also done the normal amount of web research and find many statement similar to the following: “Aprilis invests in seed- and early-stage technology companies and finances its own idea development”. Yet right now the advice I would give to any proposed start up is to identify a way to get your idea into reality. Look to move it through to beta stage, prove it, have a working model, and even better have some customers before approaching your funder.
Please note that I simply picked Aprilis at random on the basis of a Google search and I am not making any statement good or bad about them. However I appreciate their view that “there is no bear market for good ideas” and with the state of capital markets at the moment that thought is appreciated in this thick skull.
There way still be venture capitalists and angel funding companies that are prepared to work with an idea or simple concept. However the more advanced the concept the more likely the ability to fund future development will be. The demonstrable model does not need to include all of the functionality ultimately intended, but it does need to provide key concepts. In addition having a roadmap of future development is a key part of the presentation.
Funding does exist you simply need to be more focused in getting it.
Tags: Applications, Investment