Nov 21, 2019 On Our Blog

Inside Batch 25 at 500 Startups

Guest Post: Rishika Jhamb is the Marketing Lead at Alluva. Under no circumstances should any of the below content be construed as legal, tax or investment advice from 500 Startups or any of its affiliates. Alluva at 500 Startups: What it was really like being a part of Batch 25 In March of 2019, Alluva was accepted into Batch 25 of 500 Startups. As part of the founding team at Alluva, my thoughts ranged from excitement at the incredible learning opportunity to worry about how challenging 500’s batches were rumored to be. The outcome was that it was both – and when you’re at Demo Day, you’re going to be grateful to the part that’s ‘too challenging’. What Alluva is …


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Oct 3, 2019 Founder Stories and Insights

Inside 500: How Their Accelerator Helped Me Grow My Accounting-as-a-Service Company and Raise $2 Million

Felix Rodriguez is the founder and CEO of Back Office, a human-assisted AI platform and bookkeeping service for companies and consultants. In an interview with Nathan Beckord on Foundersuite’s “How I Raised It” podcast he shared how 500 Startups was instrumental in the early growth of BackOffice. Below is an excerpt of his interview.  I believe founders have superpowers. Before I started Back Office, I had built about 10 startups and sold three of them, growing teams that started in my living room to offices of 50 to 75 employees really rapidly.  The idea for Back Office came from a pain point I encountered with each startup: the one thing I hated with each company — and put off doing …


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May 31, 2019 On Our Blog

In-House vs. Outsource: What’s the Best Accounting Strategy for Your Startup?

Guest Post: Justin McLoughlin is the Founder of airCFO. Under no circumstances should any of the below content be construed as legal, tax or investment advice from 500 Startups or any of its affiliates. The early days of any company are all about resource management. Life as a startup is perilous. The companies who survive and thrive are usually the ones who find ways to do more with less. That could mean having employees who pull double duty and fill multiple roles. It may mean working a grueling schedule. It could also mean outsourcing certain key functions. Outsourcing can be a great way for a startup to leverage experienced and skilled talent without breaking the bank. You only pay for …


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May 22, 2019 On Our Blog

Startup Guide: 4 Tax Deductions to Watch for in 2019

Guest Post: Justin McLoughlin, Founder of airCFO. Under no circumstances should any of the below content be construed as legal, tax or investment advice from 500 Startups or any of its affiliates. Taxes. They’re a constant presence for any startup. No matter whether you just started earning revenue or you’re a mature veteran, taxes are an important expense item that can be a drag on your bottom line. An effective tax strategy can make all the difference between success and failure, especially in your early years. Fortunately, there are a number of steps you can take to minimize your tax exposure and reduce their impact on your profitability. Businesses can take advantage of a wide range of deductions. In fact, …


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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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Feb 6, 2018 On Our Blog

KISSs and SAFEs and
Notes….oh my!

[Editor’s Note] This is a guest post from Adam Sterling, Executive Director of the Berkeley Center for Law and Business, and a lecturer at VC Unlocked: Deal Camp at Berkeley. This post originally appeared on LinkedIn. In 2014, 500 Startups, a global venture capital firm, took a little-known action that would help change the landscape of international venture finance. This action had nothing to do with investment dollars, new hires, or liquidation events. 500 Startups simply open-sourced their proprietary investment contract for early-stage investments, the KISS (“Keep It Simple Security”), to startups and investors around the world. In the next year, fellow venture capital giant Y Combinator followed suit and open-sourced their own proprietary investment contract, the SAFE (“Simple Agreement …


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Dec 21, 2017 On Our Blog

7 Ways SEO Can Get You to a Million+ Monthly Users

Guest Post: Giulio Chiarenza is the co-founder of Equipboard, the world’s largest database of artists and the gear they use. SEO (short for Search Engine Optimization) is a fickle beast. We usually see companies fall into one of two camps; those that think of SEO as a “nice to have” secondary growth channel, and those that rely on it as the primary driver of growth and monetization. Our site Equipboard (batch 8) decidedly falls into the latter, but the journey to SEO competency has been an adventurous one to say the least. We’ve taken our fair share of missteps, and were it not for the SEO gurus we’ve met through 500 and the rest of our network, one of those …


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Nov 22, 2017 Investor Education

What I Learned at VC Unlocked: Deal Camp

VC Unlocked: Deal Camp at Berkeley, our four-day executive education program on early stage investing, takes place from February 26 – March 1, 2018. Apply today. Guest Post: Regina Leung is Vice-President of Healthcare at Bay Angels and owns her own consulting firm in healthcare and life sciences. Last month, I spent a week at Berkeley attending VC Unlocked: Deal Camp, 500 Startups’ crash course on all things early stage investing with UC Berkeley Law. I’ve been an angel investor for about a year with several startup investments to date, but was looking for the right program to become a more knowledgeable investor. Deal Camp was a great opportunity to grow my network, drill down on important topics like valuations …


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Oct 31, 2017 On Our Blog

The Road to Demo Day: A Founder’s Perspective

Guest Post: Kela Ivonye is the CEO and co-founder of MailHaven, a smart mailbox that tracks and protects your packages.  Demo Day is an invite-only event hosted by 500 Startups for investors to get a first look at the startups from the accelerator program, meet the founders, and network with other attendees. For founders, it’s the culmination of four months of hard work. As a batch company at 500 Startups, you start preparing for your last day on Day 1. That two-minute pitch on stage at Demo Day is our opportunity to show hundreds of top-tier investors what we’ve been working on. The first thing Batch 22 learned about Demo Day was to have fun, be genuine, and to own and tell your …


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Sep 19, 2017 International Stories

Venture Capital na teoria e prática [Portuguese]

[Editor’s Note] This is a guest post from Gabriela de Salles van der Linden, a participant in our recent Venture Capital Unlocked program at Stanford CPD. Gabriela has 10 years of work experience in the Brazilian venture capital industry, most recently as an executive partner of CRP Companhia de Participaçōes. O que aprendi no curso da 500 Startups em conjunto com Stanford University Quando tive conhecimento sobre o curso da 500 Startups em conjunto com Stanford University, o VC Unlocked, me perguntei se de fato um curso com tais características poderia ampliar minha visão depois de quase 10 anos trabalhando com venture capital no Brasil. Seria essa uma boa oportunidade para refletir e atualizar sobre o que está acontecendo sob uma perspectiva …


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