Many thanks to Andy and the excellent guest speakers that volunteered their time to discuss the challenges entrepreneurs face as they work to capture their target markets. Three themes resonate in my mind from the class; 1) an entrepreneur needs to be passionate about his/her company, 2) a startup should be scrappy to delay accepting outside funding and the associated loss of control of the company, and, if possible, 3) outside funding should be delayed until needed to scale a proven concept.
Multiple guest speakers spoke of the challenges of leaving or convincing talent to leave stable “401k” jobs to join a startup. Each time the subject was approached, my mind transitioned to risk vs. reward and theoretical NPV calculations. What will my personal charts look like when future opportunities/ideas present themselves and what will I do? The deliberations are just starting.
One startup that has captured my interest and that I will be following in the future is Super Critical Technologies. The company was started by a group of recent Foster graduates and advertises “We build compact modular power plants” on its webpage (supercriticaltech.com). Not a lot of additional information is available on the company, but the company logo includes the unmistakable graphic of a shipping container. It seems realistic that new technology could be disruptive to the power plant industry and maybe it will be done by these Foster grads.
A Geekwire ad linked by the company’s Twitter account (@SprCriticalTech) reports Super Critical Technologies recently raised $200k in angel funding to complete the conceptual design and establish supplier relationships and that they are fundraising to build a prototype power system. Best of luck.