Mar 18, 2020 Official Announcement

Welcoming New Partner and Global Digital Transformation Expert Flavio Dias as We Step Up Our Presence in Brazil

I first met Flavio in 2013, when he co-invested alongside 500 Startups in Olist, one of Brazil’s largest online marketplaces–which recently raised a Series C round. Olist’s founder was in our San Francisco accelerator program, and in his next round of funding turned to Flavio, who was then president of Walmart.com in Brazil. He became instrumental in building Olist’s name.  Flavio already had a solid reputation as an e-commerce pioneer and operator in the country. For nearly two decades, he helped multiple companies, including multinationals, launch their online operations in Brazil. After a successful experience at Philips, Magazine Luiza, one of Brazil’s biggest retailers, hired him to re-launch its website and improve the user experience as head of e-commerce. Those …


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Mar 6, 2020 On Our Blog

Tax Filing is Approaching, Here’s How Your Business Can Save

Guest Post: The following post is a sponsored guest post by Scott McCutcheon of incentAdvise. All views and opinions represented in this post are the views and opinions of incentAdvise and do not represent those of 500 Startups or any of its staff or affiliates.  As startups and established companies continue to scale, there are exciting benefits awaiting them that can uncover hidden cash. First introduced as a temporary measure, the Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit was passed in 1981 and worked to help stimulate the economy. The credit ultimately acted as an incentive to encourage investment within the United States. After years of extensions due to its success, the act was eventually made a permanent part of the …


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Feb 27, 2020 On Our Blog

Hospitality Tech as a Service

As sector agnostic investors, we get a first-hand look at tech-enabled startups across a number of different verticals. One which you may not have heard much about is HTaaS — or Hospitality Tech as a Service. We’ve recently partnered with LA Fund, an innovative hospitality-focused venture fund, to launch a one-week bootcamp for startups building products that have the potential to disrupt this space.  Recognizing the lack of support for tech-enabled hospitality companies, the LA Fund was created to help these startups fast-track their growth and connect them with the right industry leaders who can help them scale. We recently sat down with the founders of LA Fund, Lev Filiminov and Alex Balaban, to learn more about their inspiration for …


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Jan 28, 2020 On Our Blog

Market Research for Startups: 3 Steps to Success

Guest Post: The following post is a sponsored guest post by SEMrush. All views and opinions represented in this post are the views and opinions of SEMrush and do not represent those of 500 Startups or any of its staff or affiliates.  When you’re researching a market for the first time, it’s essential to find out what companies operate in your niche. And it’s no less important to understand how these businesses made it to the list of top industry players and what marketing strategies they follow. You also need to research target audience characteristics and preferences, regional opportunities, competitors’ offerings, and overall market development in dynamics. The question is, how are you going to do all that? Most startup …


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Aug 19, 2019 On Our Blog

500’s Latest San Francisco Batch is Hoping to Innovate in Music, TV, and Intellectual Property

Music, TV, and intellectual property all have the potential of influencing what content we consume and what technology we use to go about our daily lives. And because all three of these are huge, established, and complex industries, they are ripe for scalable solutions. It’s solutions with this kind of mass potential that are exactly what we go for in our San Francisco seed program. Here are some of the companies in our current batch who are aiming to challenge the ways these industries function and monetize:  1. FitzyTV As the TV industry moves to the internet, content creators are building a multitude of apps to get their content distributed on every Smart TV platform. FitzyTV is an open internet …


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Aug 13, 2019 On Our Blog

Latest AI Applications from 500’s Batch 25

AI is one of those buzzwords that feels like it has endless applications. That’s why it is hugely important for us to understand where the needs are now, and how AI can solve the problems better than any other technology.  Batch 25 came to 500 with an incredible number of AI-based startups. Here are just some of the many industries our latest San Francisco batch is hoping to innovate through AI.  1. E-Commerce Curie  Retail has gotten more complex over the years. Today, the modern shopper has thousands of potential data points to consider with every purchase from millions of brands, experts, and influencers. Curie aims to allow consumers to discover multiple data points about an item by taking a …


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Sep 19, 2018 On Our Blog

10 US & LatAm Startups Selected for Our 2018 Miami Growth Program!

UPDATE: These 10 startups are getting ready to pitch! Accredited investors can get a piece of the action at Miami Demo Day 2018. Contact events@500.co to attend an exclusive debut event on Nov. 1st!   500 Startups Miami has selected the 10 startups that will make up the Miami Growth Program Batch 2018. 500’s hallmark 10-week program brings mentors, experts and investors from our global network  to accelerate the startups’ growth trajectory and support fundraising to scale. The selection was a very competitive process that included reviewing over 200 applications from all over the world. The selected startups all share the following characteristics: Seasoned teams with solid track record working together Disrupting large markets in the US and Latam through highly scalable …


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Jun 12, 2017 On Our Blog

7 Marketing Secrets from 500 Startups Demo Days

Have Fun, Get Deals Done – The Future of Marketing is the Brand Experience Pitching to top Silicon Valley investors like Tim Draper is nerve-racking. It helps when he’s dressed in a superhero costume. From Valentine’s Day-Themed (Batch 19) to Summer of Love-Themed (Batch 20), 500 Startups Demo Day is more than a pitch day, it’s a festival where everyone has fun and gets deals done. Here’s a look back at lessons we’ve learned from the last 7 Demo Days, and how 500 Startups stumbled upon creating the unique pitch day in Silicon Valley. 1. Listen to Your Audience Back in the day, 500 Startups Demo Day was pretty basic (see Batch 8): 500 Startups Founding Partner, Dave McClure, speaking …


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Jun 3, 2016 On Our Blog

The Career-Changing Impact of Learning How to Invest

Our flagship Venture Capital Unlocked investor training program is back! The 2 week executive ed. program that we co-run with Stanford Center for Professional Development is now accepting applications for its July 25th – August 5th cohort. APPLY HERE Getting the Inside Scoop In the program, participants get an inside look into 500 Startups’ investment playbook and gain firsthand access to world-famous Silicon Valley VCs, angels, startups and entrepreneurs. We are looking forward to another great session taught by Stanford faculty and 500 Startups partners, as well as top speakers like the ones who visited during the February cohort (below). Program Impact At the end of 2015, we highlighted the successes of some of our VC Unlocked participants in a …


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May 18, 2016 On Our Blog

Startup Founders Talk: The First Time I Fired Someone

500 Startups Managing Partner Christine Tsai experienced mixed emotions the first time she as a founder had to let someone go. “I don’t think there was a hesitation that it was the right thing to do, it was just that the person wasn’t a great fit in terms of their skills and culture,” she said. It’s natural to have doubts and think emotionally before letting someone go, said Tsai. “You never know people’s circumstances or how this impacts them personally, even in a good job market like this.” “It’s OK to think those things, but don’t let that prevent you from making the right decision,” she added. “It’s just a sign that you’re still human.” “Maybe people who are really ruthless about …


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