Jul 27, 2018 On Our Blog

Investor Spotlight:
Tanya Soman

Tanya Soman is a native New Yorker and the youngest female to make Venture Partner at 500 Startups. She started working hands-on with companies in 2014 by coaching them through the Seed Accelerator Program and now invests in consumer companies, including a specialty track within the program that focuses on the retail, beauty, and fashion verticals. Tanya is passionate about bridging the gap between international founders and Silicon Valley, which is why she speaks at events globally on fundraising from The Valley, nailing your company pitch, fundraising strategy and recruits around the world looking for the best deals. Tanya graduated in three years with a BS in business management from Babson College, a school specializing entirely in entrepreneurship. She enjoys …


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Jul 20, 2018 On Our Blog

Founder Equity 101

Guest Post: Matt Howland is the GM of Private Markets at Carta. Matt is proud to be serving the 500 Startups network as a mentor. Founders can find Matt on Union for training and consultations. Understanding and managing equity can be confusing, but as a founder, it’s essential to take the time to learn equity basics. Getting equity right ensures: Your employees are motivated to do their best work and stick around You get the best possible investors and term sheets You as a founder retain a meaningful portion of what you’re building You avoid legal trouble Here are some answers to the most commonly-asked questions about equity that we receive at Carta: What is a cap table? A capitalization …


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Jul 12, 2018 On Our Blog

Edith Yeung’s 2018 China Internet Report

500 Partner Edith Yeung just released her 2018 China Internet Report in partnership with SCMP and Abacus. This 97-page report includes everything you need to know about China’s internet landscape including major trends such as e-Commerce, Content and Media, Social and Messaging, the Sharing Economy, Artificial Intelligence, Smart Devices, Autonomous Cars, Blockchain, FinTech, Education, Gaming and eSports. China Internet Report 2018 [Short Version] from Edith Yeung The full report can be downloaded here. Here are some of our takeaways: The Chinese internet giants want and need to do everything. Whether it’s building, investing, or acquiring, Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent are present across the internet ecosystem. China’s internet empowers the population of smaller cities and rural areas. The number of rural …


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Jul 9, 2018 On Our Blog

Persistence is Key: Advice from a Former 500 Founder

Hey there, My name is Aaron and I’m a Venture Partner here at 500 Startups. I also run the batch application squad, which is why I’m here to tell you… Applications for Batch 24 in San Francisco are now open! I know what you’re thinking: “we’ve been through this.” You’ve applied before, waited patiently, and you were told something along the lines of “Maybe-next-time.” Maybe this made you upset, or sad, or maybe you swore an oath to do whatever it takes to avenge our response. Look, I get it—putting yourself (and your startup) out there over and over again is friggin’ hard and, as always, there are no guarantees. But before you close this page, let me tell you three …


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Jul 9, 2018 On Our Blog

Don’t Bind Your Soul to a Token. Yet.

Over the last few months, I have heard countless conversations with crypto startups talking about “tokenizing” one item or another, from pets to food products. I heard 20 really good ideas, and 100 bad ones. I keep talking about the idea that just because you can do something, does not mean it is a good idea to do it. So I thought I would put together some thoughts on what makes for a good token project, specifically one where non-fungible assets are involved. In theory, any physical objects could be “tokenized” or represented by a token. The challenge is finding the right place to use a token in order to create real value. Not every unique object should be a …


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Jul 3, 2018 On Our Blog

Meet OK Blockchain Capital – 500 Startups’ Newest Corporate Partner in the Blockchain World

In Borderless Blockchain, We Trust.  We are excited to partner with OK Blockchain Capital who shares 500 Startups’ vision in discovering and backing the world’s most talented blockchain entrepreneurs from all over the world. As the strategic partner of OKCoin and OKEX a top global digital asset exchange with over $1 billion in daily trading volume, OK Blockchain Capital is focused on helping blockchain innovators through both direct funding and ecosystem support.  Launched in 2017, OK Blockchain Capital’s current investments include Perlin, Ankr, Merculet, and Vite. Building on OK Group’s experience in blockchain research, vast network, and expertise in building successful blockchain companies, OK Blockchain Capital is devoted to fueling the next generation of innovators. We understand the challenges entrepreneurs …


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