Adapted from the Journal of the Heartland Angels By Michael Gardiner Chicago’s startup scene has grown dramatically in recent years. That includes a rapid increase in local accelerators, incubators, tech parks, and similar programs. The term accelerator is used somewhat loosely, but the prototypical accelerator involves cohorts of between 10 and 20 startups that spend three to four months in a common physical location. Accelerators are sponsoring organizations that provide startups with a combination of small cash investments, intense mentoring, formal and informal networking opportunities, and organized investor pitch events—all designed to dramatically “accelerate” a startup’s development. Typically, graduating companies immediately seek a significant angel investment or venture “A” round funding. . Continue reading
IBM – International Business Machines – NYSE
Background: IBM (NYSE) is the world’s leading provider of computer hardware and services. IBM (NYSE) makes a broad range of computers, mainframes, and network servers. Over the years, IBM (NYSE) has transformed itself into a software and services company.
Focal Points: IBM (NYSE) has had an interesting revenue story for the past eight years. The company revenues go up and the company revenues go down and sometimes the company revenues stay flat. However, none of the ups and down matter very much in the long term scheme of things because the earnings continue to rise year in and year out. IBM continually focuses on one strategy, which is to leave behind their marginally profitable business models and expand their business in areas which consistently show extreme progress.
Why Invest: Once viewed as a complete giant of the computer industry with a massive intellectual property portfolio but an uncertain and shaky product strategy, IBM has over the past decade, successfully reinvented itself as a powerhouse in the software and services sector. Also, IBM seems positioned to know what will happen next in the Information Technology sector, a fact not lost on HP and other competitors trying to emulate the business model.
Why Not Invest: IBM has garnered a very noticeable amount of the outsourced Information Technology business. Innovation in this area has a tendency to be prompt and disruptive, and margins will sometimes shrink furiously as a result. IBM will have to stay ahead of the game with innovative and compelling products and conservative product strategies in order to assure a steady revenue growth for the coming years.
S&P Rating: AA
Current Yield: 1.7%
San Francisco-based portable installments organization Square has secured a rotating credit office in the low several millions headed by Goldman Sachs with interest from Morgan Stanley, Jpmorgan Chase, Barclays, and Silicon Valley Bank. Square streamlines business transactions for people and organizations with its charge card onlooker, purpose of-offer framework, and individual wallet.
Established in 2009, Square has brought $341 million up in wander financing and will utilize the new obligation financing to reserve development as it anticipates that deals will approach $1 billion not long from now.
By John Ortbal
It is estimated that 40 percent of venture backed companies fail; 40 percent return moderate amounts of capital; and only 20 percent or less produce high returns. It is the small percentage of high return deals that are most responsible for the venture capital industry consistently performing above the public markets. So what separates the zeroes from the heroes? Continue reading
Berkeley-based local ads stage Adsnative has brought $2 million up in seed financing headed by Interwest Partners with support from Onset Ventures, the Foundry Group Angels syndicate, Kbs+ventures, and different heavenly attendant gurus. Adsnative aides online distributers join local ads, permitting distributers to better adapt their sites and applications.
Established in 2012, Adsnative courses of action a huge number of ads every month and will utilize the new supports to extend its engineering and assemble its supply-side stage.
Berlin-based auto offering stage Citeecar has raised a $10 million Series A round headed by Mangrove Capital Partners. Citeecar offers imparted access to private autos as a reasonable and changeless elective to auto possession in congested urban areas. Propelled 16 months back, Citeecar at present has an armada of 500 autos in four German urban areas and will utilize the new trade to grow both in for cold hard currency Germany and abroad.