FoundersGrid Weekly News Round Up 30th Oct 2018

Read (or listen) to Sam Altman’s new startup playbook
In this new podcast, Y Combinator founder Sam Altman shares his insights on launching a successful startup, from ideation to ensuring great execution.  It’s one fo the best startup resources for founders we’ve seen yet this year, and it’s completely free.

These are the most successful companies to emerge from Y Combinator
This is a great rundown of the most successful companies to come out of the startup incubator Y Combinator.  The cohort of businesses ranges from tech heavyweights like AirBnB to relatively unknown startups like Ginkgo Bloworks.

Did this entrepreneur make a mistake by selling Delicious to Yahoo?
In this reflection piece, Joshua Schachter mulls over whether he made a strategic misstep by selling his revolutionary social bookmarking site to Yahoo in 2005 (the site was ultimately sold off and shut down late last year).

Take a look inside Bird’s scooter economics structure
Scooter sharing is taking over America as the latest startup craze, with startups like Bird netting billion-solar valuations – but it’s worth first taking a look at the unit economics behind this business model, and how well they work (or don’t) for generating profits.

Here’s how controversy in Saudi Arabia is impacting startup valuations in Silicon Valley
The recent controversy in Saudi Arabia isn’t just causing geopolitical upheaval; it’s also causing the valuations of startups in Silicon Valley to suffer (and the country’s stake in Softbanks’ Vision Fund is a big reason for that).

Merging one’s profitable one-person startup with a larger startup is challenging.
Most bootstrappers tend to run their own businesses for a lengthy amount of time, but this entrepreneur chose to take a different route.  Phil Derksen, founder of WP Simple Pay, opted to instead merge his business with a slightly larger startup – and it paid off.

How one founder attracted the first 500 paid users for his $5/mo SaaS startup
In this piece, Inkdrop founder Takuya Matsumaya reveals how he went about building a customer base for his paid SaaS startup in the early days of the platform.  It’s full of great growth hacks and advertising strategies for any budding founder.

To build a stronger startup brand, understanding your competitors first is critical
Conducting an in-depth competitive analysis of one’s target market is incredibly important to every startup’s success.  This piece walks through the three phases of competitive analysis (collection, assessment, and inference) and discusses how each piece is critical to the process.

Inside Uber’s secret empire of virtual restaurants
The rapid growth of UberEats, the ride-hailing giant’s delivery business, has led to some unconventional restaurant arrangements.  In many cases, restaurants are using excess capacity to open up “virtual restaurants” that sometimes serve entirely different cuisine.

On the false gospel of “social entrepreneurship”
Social entrepreneurship can become a misnomer, and that’s not a good thing for startups.  Even withe the best of intentions, it’s easy for founders to get let astray – and it’s important to remember that positive changes can be made outside of work just as much as inside it.



Y Combinator is now looking for startups specializing in carbon removal technologies

TabSquare has just secured $10M in Series B funding

These startups failed – and took $1.4B in VC funding with them in this year alone

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wale’s new media startup has no journalists

Smart home hardware startup Tado has just landed $50M in funding from Amazon and others

ShopRunner is acquiring Spring, and has raised more than $50M in funding in the process

Bessemer Venture Partners is launching a brand new $1.85B fund

Oculus’ co-founder is the latest in Facebook’s growing list of high-profile departures

Dyson is set to build its first electric cars in Singapore by 2021

Edited by Chris Osborne in Barcelona (in town? let’s meet for a coffee). Want to sponsor an edition of FoundersGrid? More info here. Check out our other newsletters: CryptoWeekly & AsiaTechNews, along with our in-depth research reports: GrowthListAsiaTechList & CryptoList.

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