Interview with business plan winners

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On Thursday February 9, 2012, Nicola Allieta of was a guest and spoke about the organization and its mission to bridge the gap between startup companies in Italy and the resources available to startups in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Nicola introduced us to the founders of two of the winners of MindTheBridge’s 2011 Business Plan Competition. First was Luca Rossenttini of D-Orbit. D-Orbit, as the name implies, is developing technology to safely remove debris from space. Next was Francesca Cavallo of Timbuktu Labs. Timbuktu is creating the next generation of editorial products that connect kids and grown-ups.

RC Williams, Francesco Baschieri and I also discussed the operational implications of various choices of structuring a business either as a corporation, LLC or sole proprietorship.

You can hear a replay of the program here.

The Free COO program airs live on Thursdays at 4:00pm on Spreaker.

Facebook IPO filing dispels first mover advantage myth, again

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In the summer of 2011, a panel of distinguished VC’s was convened for a typical Silicon Valley morning symposium on the state of funding for startups. In early 2011, it seemed like every entrepreneur was pitching an idea or shifting their startup’s strategy to offer a Groupon-like service. In their opening remarks, each VC quipped to the audience of aspiring entrepreneurs, “don’t bring me another coupon deal”. Were they acting in a manner any less herd-like than the entrepreneurs? No.

The VC’s were really saying, “If your company is not the first to market with an idea, we’re not interested”, the conventional “first mover advantage” theory. Read more…

The Free COO Podcast Now on Spreaker

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I have launched a live broadcast of The Free COO on Spreaker. Each show we’ll offer advice for building and growing your startup business; plus we’ll have guest COOs, entrepreneurs and other people who will share their advice and experiences with you.

You can listen to the Premier show here:

Follow our show on Spreaker, Facebook or @thefreecoo to receive notification when the show goes live. We’ll typically broadcast on Thursday afternoon around 4:00 pm Pacific time (+/-).

You can join the discussion in real-time by sending emails to or send a Skype connection request to thefreecoo. On Skype you can text message your question and then we’ll call out to you when we’re ready to take callers.

I welcome your feedback on the show both positive and negative. Your comments and suggestions will make the show better since, this is a new endeavor for me. Send me your recommendations for guest COOs or other interesting people and we’ll do our best to book them on future shows. If you have access to people who might be of interest to you and our audience, please send an introductory email to me and the other person and we’ll be sure to give you a shout-out on the show for making it happen.

Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you and speaking with you on Spreaker.