Aug 31, 2012 On Our Blog

Co-founding Love: Skydiving

This story is by Mary Haskett, Co-founder of Tactical Information Systems the creators of WanderID. WanderID lets parents upload information about their child into a database. With it is a complementary smart phone app that uses biometric face matching technology. This technology allows police or hospital personnel to take a photograph of a lost child, find them in their database, and then connect them back to their parents in minutes. You can learn more at Follow WanderID on Twitter  and on Facebook. I met Alex Kilpatrick when we were undergraduates in college (it was the 80s). I was a member of the Texas A&M Skydiving Club and working at a skydiving school and he wanted to learn how to skydive. We became …

Aug 27, 2012 On Our Blog

Creating #500STRONG (Part 2)

  ** (This post was originally published here) In my last post, I covered how we built a strong community at 500 Startups among our companies. In this post, I will focus on how we built the 500 Mentor network. (Fun factoid: “Mentor” is a character in Greek mythology) The 500 Mentors are a tribe of 180 people (and growing) who commit time and energy to help our startups. They… – are based all over the world– work at startups– work at big companies– have founded startups– have domain/operational expertise in one or more functional areas and verticals– do this all on a volunteer basis– may or may not invest in startups– are opinionated (I mean this in a good way)– LOVE helping entrepreneurs– LOVE 500 Startups– …

Aug 24, 2012 On Our Blog

Co-founding Love: Calling for Submissions!

Hello!  If anyone is interested in sharing a story for our Co-founding Love Series, we’re calling out for submissions. Tell us the story of how you met your co-founder(s) and started your company. Share advice on how to maintain a strong co-founder relationship or lessons learned through disputes.  If you’re a solo founder, tell us how it was like being a solo founder. Was it harder? Why did you decide to go at it alone?  The quirkier, the crazier, the funnier, the better. Oh, we like sappy stories too. We want to hear about you and your co-founder(s)! If interested, please send an email to vi(at) with the subject line Co-founding Love. With it, please include: 1. Your story. Doesn’t have to …

Aug 23, 2012 On Our Blog

WIN Wednesdays: Natala Menezes

This week’s WIN Wednesday Woman is 500 Startup Mentor Natala Menezes. She is currently the co-founder of The Shoestring Agency, focused on resourceful and innovative marketing and product development. She is interested in building efficient, beautiful and delightful self-serve web applications. Previously, she worked at Google, Microsoft, Amazon, TeachStreet & Gigwalk. Follow her on Twitter here.

Aug 21, 2012 On Our Blog

What Makes an Intern a Good Hire?

This is a guest post by Nathan Parcells. Nathan Parcells is co-founder of, a leading website to help students find amazing internships and help companies find amazing interns.  Nathan has spoken at universities across the country on intern hiring issues and InternMatch was part of 500 Startups’ first batch. Why Fantastic Interns add $50K+ of Value to Your Startup, and Mediocre Interns Will Cost You   A few years ago Aaron Patzer, co-founder of, gave one of the best startup presentations I have seen.  He dissected the process of Starting a Company, and in doing so sparked countless conversations about the value of business co-founders, all of which helped lead to the rise of the hustler over the MBA. …

Aug 20, 2012 On Our Blog

Creating #500STRONG (Part 1)

(This post was originally published here) The number one reason that entrepreneurs are attracted to 500 Startups is our community. I call it the “500 Family” because it really is a family. Everyone helps each other, is quick to jump in and provide help, gives tough love, and gets into squabbles (or downright fighting). At the end of the day, there is always a sense of unity, of something bigger that connects us all. We call it #500STRONG. Over 600 founders and 180 mentors make up the 500 Family. Recently, people have asked me how we went about creating and nurturing this tight-knit community. So I’m sharing part I of it in this post. Before I get into any specific tactics, I will take …

Aug 17, 2012 On Our Blog

Co-founding Love: Start Something

This story is by Spence Murray on how he, Kevin Cheng, Arshad Tayyeb, and Scott San Filippo started working together on Incredible Labs, a 500 Startups funded company. Incredible Labs created Donna, a mobile personal assistant that anticipates your needs. You can follow them on Twitter here.   Summer of ’11, I found myself freshly free from running engineering, release and partner relationships at my 5th startup.  While I was a long time startup survivor, I’d only been a founder of 2 of the aforementioned ventures.  At that point in my career, I was still very fired up to dive into something, but was also feeling cautious.  Should I start something of my own?  Should I join someone else’s (again)? …

Aug 15, 2012 On Our Blog

WIN Wednesday: Leah Busque

Sometimes at 500 Startups, we’d wish to ourselves that there was a startup out there we can use to find reliable people to help us with tasks and errands. Oh wait! There is! It’s called TaskRabbit and we’re an investor! We’re a big fan of TaskRabbit and the company’s founder, Leah Busque, that’s why Leah is today’s WIN Wednesday Woman. Leah graduated Sweet Briar College with a B.S. in Math and Computer Science. She worked as a software engineer at IBM for a long time before co-founding Linkedup LLC. In true entrepreneurship spirit, Leah soon realized another brilliant startup idea and started TaskRabbit.  She is also an angel investor and is one of the many awesome women who have accepted …

Aug 15, 2012 On Our Blog

500 Startups is HIRING – Want to connect Tech’s Influencers, Create content, & Travel the World with #GOAP?

We’re (still) on the hunt for a RAD person to join the Business Development & Events Group @ 500 Startups. We’re looking for someone who: > Knows the early-stage tech/startup community well > Loves creating content (conference agendas, GOAP itineraries, website + email copy, blog posts, social media, etc.) > Gets excited at the prospect of working 1-on-1 with some of the most successful/fascinating folks in tech + traveling the world to uncover opportunities > Is super, super, super cool, funny, hard working, and genuine > More info HERE *** Know anyone that would be a fit? Send them to Christen > christen at 500 startups dot com

Aug 14, 2012 On Our Blog

Seedcamp vs. 500

This post is by Andrew Crump, co-founder of Bluefields. Bluefields’ app allow you to get your sports teams together without the hassle. They were part of our 4th accelerator batch. Follow them on twitter here.Why would any startup decide to be in two accelerator programs at the same time? We get asked the question a lot. Are we deranged, misguided; do we simply not care about equity dilution; or are we so lacking in confidence that we feel we need the warm fuzzy comfort blanket of an accelerator ecosystem to be able to achieve greatness? No, to all of the above; but actually we think we have made quite a clever decision. You see, Seedcamp and 500 are two very …