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シアトルの四人の起業家の鼎談

2003/01/08 06:58
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umeda

シリコンバレーで経営コンサルティングを行なう傍ら、ベンチャーキャピタリストとしても活躍する梅田望夫さんが、IT業界の先を読むのに役立つ英文コンテンツを毎日紹介していきます。これを読めば、英語と業界動向を読む力が同時に身に付くはず(このブログの更新は2004年12月30日で終了しました)。
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シアトルタイムスに掲載されたシアトルの四人の起業家の鼎談。起業家の立場からの本音で米国ベンチャー世界の現在はどう見えるか。

「To me, there have always been three things that VCs (venture capitalists) have looked for, and recently they've added a fourth one: management team, barrier to entry/unique technology and size of market. The fourth one they've added is ... what's the cost of acquiring a customer?」

「For instance, whenever we talk to VCs, of course we paint a huge potential IPO picture, but anyone who reads our business plan can see 15 different ways our company can be acquired in three to five years. Today's entrepreneur needs to be a lot more intelligent about his plans for other potentials.」

「It's not a good time to raise money. Even if you could raise money, I wouldn't take it at the dilution I would get.」

「I haven't been paid for two months, but the thing that keeps me awake at night is that we have a really neat technology and some patents pending, but we are growing really slow. My only hope is that there isn't a competitor that we don't know about sneaking up behind us. That, to me, is the balancing act between how much dilution and how much money you want to take.」

「The last $15,000 I raised was as time-consuming as the last million I raised before that. The $15,000 I'm trying to raise now, I've spent seven weeks on, with an attorney and everything. A couple thousand dollars used to be a phone call, and then you'd have a couple people fighting over who was going to write the first check. This has literally taken six weeks. I might get the money wired tomorrow. I haven't been able to pay employees. I had to lay them off. And this is money that would hopefully restart the company, but it is very painful. We've had to give up a lot in terms of equity and other concessions to get this money.」

仕事柄、こういう起業家の声はよく耳にするのだが、起業家の肉声が活字になる例はそう多くないので、ご紹介した次第。鼎談の最後の質問は、資金調達に個人債務保証をしているかどうか。皆、最近は、大なり小なり、しているようですねぇ。厳しい時代です。

※このエントリは CNET Japan ブロガーにより投稿されたものです。朝日インタラクティブ および CNET Japan 編集部の見解・意向を示すものではありません。
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