Category Archives: Financing Issues

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Tips for Expanding Your Investor Network from Coast to Coast

With a competitive marketplace, new technology companies may find that they need more capital to accelerate their company’s growth. The question becomes how to effectively approach investors outside the company’s geographical market. At FoleyTECH Chicago 2016, Liam Donohue, co‑founder and managing partner of Boston-based .406 Ventures; Ned Schwartz, partner of Ohio‑based Drive Capital; Tasha Seitz, … Continue reading this entry

The Equity Crowdfunding Rules: What You Need to Know

The SEC’s equity crowdfunding rules finally go into effect this month almost four years after Congress passed the JOBS Act, requiring the relaxing of certain rules on raising funds. So what does equity crowdfunding actually look like? Here is a primer:… Continue reading this entry

Pitch Perfect: Eight Insights for an Effective Start-Up Company Pitch Deck

Preparing an investor pitch deck is a task that most start-up companies encounter in the fund raising process. While almost all companies create investor pitch decks, many fail to do so effectively or with maximum impact. Founder teams often consider the pitch deck an afterthought to a company’s MVP (minimum viable product) or the beta … Continue reading this entry

Corporate Venture Funds: Friend or Foe?

Many large corporations have set up, or are in the process of setting up, in-house venture funds. At the same time, early and later-stage companies are looking for “smart money” investors – funds that bring strategic and operational help along with cash. Are corporate venture funds the perfect match? Yes and no. Corporate venture funds … Continue reading this entry

Headwinds in Venture Funding: Strategies for Companies in 2016

By all measures, much of 2014 and 2015 were strong years in venture capital funding. The current forecast is, however, less optimistic for founders looking for venture backing; the end of 2015 saw a pullback in private investing and trends for the start of 2016 demonstrate caution among investors.… Continue reading this entry

Unlocking the SAFE – An Alternative to Convertible Notes

With the increasing level of investment in emerging companies, entrepreneurs are being presented with a wider range of financing documents. One of the relatively newer financing instruments is the “SAFE” (simple agreement for future equity). While some founders and investors believe that the SAFE is a more straightforward replacement for a convertible promissory note, others … Continue reading this entry

The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act: Quick and Easy – But Does it Work in the VC/PE Context?

The Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act (DRAA), effective as of May 2, 2015, is a recent arbitration statute that promises to be popular among parties to a wide range of business agreements. The DRAA is intended to be used principally for the resolution of commercial disputes between businesses, but it has been appearing in venture capital … Continue reading this entry

Key Considerations for Companies Seeking Early Stage Funding

From accelerators to crowdfunding, and angel funding to venture capital, early stage funding is evolving. At the 2015 FOLEYTech Summit, the speakers on “Exploring the Evolution of Early Stage Funding” panel discussed some of the key concepts and concerns companies should consider when seeking early stage funding.… Continue reading this entry

What Is a Subprime Unicorn?

Christopher Mims had an article in the Wall Street Journal recently titled “The Dangers Ahead if Tech Unicorns Get Gored.” In his article, Mr. Mims discusses the potential collateral damage of a failed unicorn. The article is thought provoking and includes two quotes that highlight aspects of venture capital that are important to understand. Venture … Continue reading this entry

Tips for Going Global: Plan Before You Expand

Companies enjoying success in the U.S. often seek global expansion to gain strategic benefits from accessing new markets—new revenue potential, talent acquisition and increased brand awareness. Before replicating your business for a new market and approaching global expansion as a default growth option, the development of a well-constructed business strategy is imperative. International business expansion … Continue reading this entry

Top Considerations When Selecting a Strategic Corporate Partner

As technology companies evolve, their funding needs and strategies change and they may explore middle and later stage investments from strategic partners as well as VCs. At the 2015 FOLEYTech Summit, the speakers on “The Role of VCs and Corporate Partners in Financing Company Growth” panel discussed a number of points for entrepreneurs to consider … Continue reading this entry

Crowdfunding 101: The Four Types You Need To Know

This post was originally written by Dylan Rochon, 2015 Foley & Lardner LLP Startup Connector. The term “crowdfunding” is closely associated with websites such as Kickstarter.com and GoFundMe.com. These sites provide a platform for startup companies to attract attention and funding. They provide an avenue for a wider group of investors to help fund or … Continue reading this entry

Mark Your Calendars: 2015 FOLEYTech Summit

Join us on October 1, 2015 as we explore how the evolution of technology has transformed business and altered the investing landscape. Our 11th annual FOLEYTech Summit will bring together tech entrepreneurs, executives, managers, investors and advisers.… Continue reading this entry

What Do the Expanded Reg A+ Rules Mean for Your Company?

This spring, the SEC adopted final rules required by the JOBS Act, which some hoped would increase smaller companies’ access to capital. Note, this wasn’t the long-awaited crowdfunding rules, it was the expansion of Regulation A (called by many Reg A+). Regulation A is an existing, and little used, exemption from the registration requirements of the … Continue reading this entry

Tips & Traps When Talking to Potential Investors

The fundraising process requires countless hours to develop and refine an investor pitch. While the majority of that time will be focused on how to find and raise money from the best investors on the best terms, it is critical to remember that there are limits to what can be said and done under applicable securities … Continue reading this entry

Coming to America Part II: Legal & Cultural Challenges for Emerging Companies

In our last post “Coming to America Part I,” we discussed why emerging companies would choose enter the US market to do business. In this post, we will discuss the many interrelated legal and cultural factors non-US companies must consider in order to establish a successful US presence.… Continue reading this entry

Coming to America Part I: Legal & Cultural Challenges for Emerging Companies

As of late, many emerging companies have decided to enter the U.S. market. While international expansion is an important Ubusiness milestone, there are multiple legal and cultural considerations companies must reflect on. In this two part series, we will discuss why companies choose to come to the United States to do business and what companies … Continue reading this entry

Do Founders Really Control Their Company With 51% Ownership?

Founders are often focused on maintaining at least 51% ownership of their companies. With 51%, they will be able to control the Company, and their destiny. At least that’s what they thought. In reality, the 51% control premium is often contracted away in the world of preferred stock venture financings. In a typical venture financing, … Continue reading this entry

Why Start-Ups Use Convertible Debt Part III: The Virtues of Convertible Debt for a Start-Up

Over the course of our “Why Start-Ups Use Convertible Debt” series, we’ve discussed the two common paths start-up companies take to structure a financing. In Part I, we discussed common stock financing and in Part II, we discussed a convertible debt financing.  In Part III, we will review the main principles start-up companies must remember … Continue reading this entry

Why Start-Ups Use Convertible Debt Part II: How a Convertible Debt Works

In Part I of our “Why Start-Ups Use Convertible Debt” series, we discussed one of the typical start-up financing structures, the sale of common stock, along with the issues that should be considered when setting a valuation. Based on the issues that arise with the sale of common stock, another financing option that tends to … Continue reading this entry

Why Start-Ups Use Convertible Debt Part I: Common Stock Financing and the Problem of Setting a Valuation

Most start-up companies turn to friends, family and/or high net worth individuals as the first source of capital to fund their operations. Banks will not lend to these companies since there are no real assets to collateralize the loans, and most venture capitalists and other institutional investors need to see a further developed company with … Continue reading this entry

A Q&A With Digital Media Investors Part II: Advice for Digital Media Companies

As noted in Part I: Digital Media Funding Trends, Foley Partner Beth Felder gathered a group of digital media investor experts – Don Dodge, Developer Advocate for Google, James Geshwiler, Managing Director of CommonAngels and Eric Hjerpe, Partner at Kepha Partners – at our 2014 FOLEYTech Summit for a discussion on digital media investing. We’ve … Continue reading this entry

A Q&A With Digital Media Investors Part I: Digital Media Funding Trends

Foley Partner Beth Felder gathered a group of digital media investor experts – Don Dodge, Developer Advocate for Google, James Geshwiler, Managing Director of CommonAngels and Eric Hjerpe, Partner at Kepha Partners – at our 2014 FOLEYTech Summit for a discussion on digital media investing. We’ve compiled their top insights below. What do we mean … Continue reading this entry

Is Your Baby Your Buyer’s Collateral?

Even before dealing with the intricacies of nondisclosure agreements, employment offer letters, stock restriction agreements, and incentive plans, it is not unusual for founders to have already dreamt of an IPO or sale event. In fact, it is crucial for founders to consider when and how to make that ultimate decision to sell their companies … Continue reading this entry