Where have enterprise software start-ups gone? Why should we care? And, what can be done?

While innovative enterprise software solutions are still needed, there is a dearth of funding for new enterprise-targeted software companies within the venture community. Why? Because enterprise IT  – the target market for these solutions – and the incumbent enterprise IT software providers (e.g. Oracle, SAP, MS, IBM, etc.) have conspired to build a virtually impenetrable gauntlet for start-up software companies to overcome. If you – the start-up that is – are not part of a ‘blessed’ corporate architectural standard you will find selling your innovative enterprise software solution a very tough slog. You will bear the burden of extended sales cycles, high sales costs and increasingly smaller budgets already spoken for by the big brands. Continue Reading …

Fund Raising: What a Venture Capitalist is Thinking

This is an excerpt from a recent interview I did with Advisor Garage – http://www.advisorgarage.com , a web community focused on helping entrepreneurs. I hope it gives you insight when you present to us, or any venture firm, to understand just what in the heck we are thinking as you’re presenting.

Venture Capitalist Gives Entrepreneurs Advice

Top Ten Questions:
1. Tell us about your Venture Capital Company.
InterWest Partners was established in 1979 and is a leading diversified venture capital firm currently investing InterWest IX, a $600 million fund. With more than $2B in capital under management, we take a long-term, collaborative approach to venture funding, providing early-stage and ongoing capital, management development and access to a broad network of resources.

InterWest is the lead investor in more than 70% of the investments we make, reflecting our ability to marshal resources and organize financings on behalf of our portfolio companies. We maintain relationships with our portfolio companies for an average of 5 years and in some cases for 10 years or more. An InterWest general partner serves as a director for 85% of the companies in our portfolio, often continuing to serve even after the partnership’s investment in the company has been returned.

Continue Reading …