Archive for January, 2008

January 31, 2008

Want to learn how to recruit? Look to the New England Patriots

If you want to learn how to recruit for your organization, there is no better example than the New England Patriots. Recruiting at its most basic is targeted marketing.

It’s all about creating an attractive message about accomplishments, work environment, challenging work, your stellar team and then promoting that information to the marketplace.

Scott Pioli and Bill Belichick have put together a team without parallel in its excellence by using all the previously mentioned attractors.

Accomplishments: Three superbowl wins (and counting) this decade. Record setting offense….. you get the picture………If you are a newly created company, the best data points you can provide your recruit prospects are the accomplishments of your team and the quality of your investors.

Stellar Team: MVP quarterback, top offensive line, best receivers in the league, quality and flexibility at every position. Individual accomplishment is subsumed by the team effort and knowledge that it takes effort from every member to achieve their goals……….Working with great people, that challenge and inspire brings out the best and raises the performance of the entire team. That is why, for a start up, the first hires are extremely important in determining the “DNA” of the organization and the quality of candidates the company can attract.

Challenging Work: What could be more challenging to an NFL team than attaining a perfect season? Imagine the difference in the challenge and motivation of playing for the Miami Dolphins or the Patriots. As a player, which would you prefer?………….Bottom line, going to work everyday when you are engaged and enthralled by what you do is very fulfilling. The hardest jobs can be the most rewarding.

So, lets look at some signs that a recruiting program is working?

1. Great candidates don’t expect to be bought or opt for less short term compensation, so the team can attract more talent….. Randy Moss world class receiver and MVP quarterback Tom Brady both made decisions based on more than money to make the deal to bring Moss to New England.

2. Losing great individual contributors yet maintaining a high level of organizational performance. Remember Ty Law and Deione Branch, who?

3. You have created an organization that attracts talent: Bengals receiver Chad Johnson wants to play for Patriots.

4. Team members get even better in your organization. Wes Welker is a prime example with 67 receptions and 1 TD in Miami and 112 catches and 8 TD’s with New England.

Admittedly, the Patriots are an extreme example of what happens when you have a highly successful recruiting program. In our industry, maybe Google has a similar image and resulting recruiting story.

For the rest of us, knowing where we are trying to get and what the ingredients are to achieve our goal is what we can learn from the Patriots. Figure out what is attractive about your company, make the work challenging and interesting and err on the side of caution when bringing in the core team.

January 25, 2008

Tokutek Inc.

Company Name: Tokutek Inc.

Citation URL:

Formation Date: 2006

Funding Status: Seed Round

Investors: ?

Founders or Execs past companies: Akamai, Google, Giganet

Industry: Database

Offering Description: Tokutek’s patent-pending technology is a result of eight years of research and development by experts in cache-oblivious algorithmics and is used to accelerate key database operations by orders of magnitude. Tokutek’s solution is based on revolutionary new Fractal Tree™ technology. The Tokutek solution plugs into the back-end of a database, allowing operating practices to continue without change while the performance of the system improves dramatically.

January 25, 2008

iSeeCars

Company Name: iSeeCars

Company URL: http://www.iSeeCars.com

Citation URL:

Formation Date: 2007

Funding Status: Self-funded

Investors: Self-funded

Founders or Execs past companies: Deloitte, Storage Networks, NEC, Verifone, SAP, SolidWorks

Industry: Consumer Internet

Offering Description: iSeeCars is a meta search engine for cars for sale listings across the Web, currently searching over 250 websites including newspaper, local dealerships, classifieds, and auction websites. Built specifically for the car consumer, iSeeCars helps users easily and quickly find the perfect deal for the perfect car through iSeeCars’ proprietary and unique technology and functionalities.

January 16, 2008

Flylite

Company Name: FlyLite

Company URL: http://www.flylite.com:8080/iCloset/index.do

Citation URL:

Formation Date:

Funding Status: Seed

Investors:

Founders or Execs past companies: Winnipeg Free Press, Evolve Golf, Inc.

Industry: Consumer Web

Offering Description: Flylite is the world’s first remote wardrobe manager for frequent flyers. We serve frequent flyers who understand that time, more than anything else, is their most precious commodity.

January 15, 2008

neoSaej

Genotrope Record: neoSaej

Company URL: http://www.neosaej.com/

Citation URL:

Formation Date: August 2006

Funding Status: Series A

Investors: Stata Venture Partners

Founders or Execs past companies: Nexabit, Voice Signal. Axiowave

Industry: Online marketplace infrastructure, Consumer Web

Offering Description: NeoSaej’s innovative architecture enables unique and disruptive technologies to address the severe inefficiencies in current on-line marketplaces, and greatly benefits all its participants.

January 9, 2008

Stealth Startup doing online art and animation

I was lucky to get to meet the developer and view a demo from a new start-up at a meet-up last week. The company has a demo product ready, but not a working name or a product name. The founders are from a successful imaging company in the Boston area. The offering allows very easy creation of images and animation, and features an attribution component that will credit the creators of the original content as it is re-used in other animations.

It is safe to say that with their much more robust art offerings and ease of animation, they may give both GameBrix and Fuzzwich a serious run for their money, if not totally blow them away. The new company is looking for digital artists to test out the system and contribute content if you wish. Anyone that is interested, drop me an email listed on the contact page of this blog and I will get you a beta invite.

January 9, 2008

Authentrus

Company Name: Authentrus

Company URL: http://www.authentrus.com/

Citation URL:

Formation Date: 2006

Funding Status: Seed Round

Investors: Self Funded?

Founders or Execs past companies: Delphi Internet Services, Planetall, Dakini, Inc

Industry: Security, Web Infrastructure

Offering Description: provides Identity Management Operations services to companies that want to ensure that they receive the full security and manageability benefits that an identity management system should provide.

January 7, 2008

North End Technologies

Company Name: North End Technologies

Company URL: http://www.northendtechnologies.com/

Citation URL:

Formation Date: 2006

Funding Status: Seed Round less tha $1 M

Investors: Castile Ventures

Founders or Execs past companies: iRobot, PicutreTel

Industry: Consumer Media

Offering Description: Stealth mode, developing next-generation multi-media technology.

 
January 5, 2008

N2N Commerce gets upNded

We never were much for boy bands, so not really a fan of companies created by VC’s. Without passionate founders, the odds of success are limited. Give us a singer/songwriter any-day.

So it was no surprise to see that N2N Commerce had folded. N2N was created by a VC and the Limited Brands to build a web commerce site for Victoria Secrets. After $30M invested, no completed system and all effort focused on one major customer, the writing was on the wall.

The good news is, Allurent, Optaros, Demandware and others got some of that cash, so it wasn’t all bad for the startup ecosystem.

January 4, 2008

BatchBlue

Company Name: BatchBlue

Company URL: http://www.batchblue.com/

Citation URL: http://mashable.com/2007/09/24/batchbook/

Formation Date: 2006

Funding Status: Self Funded?

Investors:

Founders or Execs past companies: Amazon, Matrix Group International

Industry: Consumer Web

Offering Description: BatchBook is a clean, lean, customizable data management machine thatâ??s a perfect fit for the entrepreneurial lifestyle: it’s highly organized, quite mobile .