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Brot und Startups

Paul Grahams Dezember Predigt: Could VC be a Casualty of the Recession?

The reason startups no longer depend so much on VCs is one that everyone in the startup business knows by now: it has gotten much cheaper to start a startup. There are four main reasons: Moore’s law has made hardware cheap; open source has made software free; the web has made marketing and distribution free; and more powerful programming languages mean development teams can be smaller. These changes have pushed the cost of starting a startup down into the noise. In a lot of startups – probaby most startups funded by Y Combinator – the biggest expense is simply the founders’ living expenses.

$3000 is insignificant as revenues go. Why should anyone care about a startup making $3000 a month? Because, although insignificant as revenue, this amount of money can change a startup’s funding situation completely.

Once you’re profitable you don’t need investors’ money. And because Internet startups have become so cheap to run, the threshold of profitability can be trivially low.

And while founders may not have needed VC money the way they used to, they were willing to take it if offered—partly because there was a tradition of startups taking VC money, and partly because startups, like dogs, tend to eat when given the opportunity.

Aber founders sind auch wie Affen:

Imagine what it would do to the VC business if the next hot company didn’t take VC at all.

VCs think they’re playing a zero sum game. In fact, it’s not even that. If you lose a deal to Benchmark, you lose that deal, but VC as an industry still wins. If you lose a deal to None, all VCs lose.

Im Umkehrschluss kann man deutschen VCs weiterhin gute bis rosige Zeiten prophezeien. Die Gründerszene ist weitestgehend top down, ein CEO und sein Marketing-Freund haben eine Idee (oft die, die Idee von einem anderen hier auch zu haben, cheap shot), das VC wird immer gebraucht, um dann die Realisierung und die Koordination der Realisierung einzukaufen.

meta 08.12.2008 /via @paulgraham #