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Startup101: Everything you need to know to get started

There’s no two ways about it – starting a company requires a lot of honest hard work. From idea conception, to product design, pitching, fundraising and marketing, every stage of consideration takes time, effort and money. No company takes off and grows in a snap.

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Published by Tech in Asia
on 25 Jan 2017

Startup101: Everything you need to know to get started

Negotiating a seed round

Always have a best alternative to a negotiated agreement (BATNA) up your sleeves. It gives you additional leverage when negotiating for the terms that really matter. Handle the negotiation well and you may find yourself landing a better deal – you may even go far in the next stages of your relationship with the investor.

Raising series A or B

Investors are more valuation-sensitive in these series, so make it a point to prove you’ve been hitting targets and growth is strong. Presenting your long term plans clearly can also strengthen your valuation. Want insider tips? Turn to your network and speak to people who have played this game well.

Setting a company budget

A well-planned budget is crucial to help you stay out of the red and eventually, cut a profit. Start by checking industry standards, research and talk to fellow business owners. It’s always wise to factor in some slack by forecasting a monthly capital burn rate to your budget. If money is tight, consider cutting costs by hiring virtual help or allow your team to work remotely.

Scale or become profitable?

This is almost always a trade-off. Your strategy really depends on the nature of your business. If you’re selling software, scaling your business is a great strategy since it is unlikely you will incur additional cost. On the flipside, if you’re in an industry that relies heavily on manpower, scaling too quickly may take a toll on your revenue.

Working with corporates

At different stages of a business, it is often a challenge identifying how to work with corporates to achieve different business goals. If you’re looking for investment partners, join a corporate-backed accelerator program. Or if you’re looking to extend your brand, acquisition might not be such a bad idea. The possibilities are endless if constant effort is placed to stay in touch with the right circles.

Bootstrap your expansion across Asia

Asia’s relatively low operational costs makes it a popular attraction for many hopeful startups who are bootstrapping. Being such a diverse continent, it is impossible to go after everything at once. Instead of putting your toes in the water across many markets, the smarter choice would be to identify target markets to enter.

Salary vs. Equity

Startup employees usually find themselves deciding between these two pay options. Base your decision on where you are in life – do you have a family to feed? Or do you see tremendous potential in the company to grow big and so, you’d prefer waiting to have a piece of that pie? Consider these carefully before you decide what best suits your unique situation.

Last Modified Date: 19 Apr 2018