Early-Stage Startups by @semilshah

I want to try a new blogging experiment. I only thought of this idea this morning, so feel free to chime in with any ideas. The basic idea is this: I want to blog about very young technology startups. I get many emails every week from founders and feel that this would be an interesting way for me to capture and share the new companies with folks who read what I write. I envision that the posts will be short (very short), and be more about my assessment of the team, potential market, and how the product fits in that landscape.

Here’s what I’m thinking. Any startup that doesn’t have financing from an institution can contact me via email. In that note, I’d like to see links to the product or screenshots, links to profiles on LinkedIn or Quora, Twitter, etc., and whatever else is relevant. If you’re around Palo Alto, we can meet up in person, or we can talk by phone. After the call or meeting, I’ll write about the idea on my blog and try to build up a repository of early-stage concepts and ideas. The catch is that I will also put my own filter on the blog, so I may say something positive or not about the concept. That’s the risk or reward. For instance, I definitely won’t write about folks who are not straight-forward with their intentions or if they don’t meet the criteria above. The point of this is to help identify which entities may have the right ingredients for funding by an institution.

[For companies that I meet in person, I’ll ask for a $10 donation (through Square, which I’m excited to try) that will be routed to a local charity. I want to do this so that I can try Square, manage my free time, and help out a nonprofit.]

If you’re a startup, you can contact me through this blog or my personal site. (Please don’t use Twitter, as I’m bound to miss tweets.)

Again, I’m looking for people who have built something like a working prototype and have not accepted any institutional funding. Thanks, look forward to hearing from you.

For those reading or who’d like to be alerted (like investors or journalists), you can follow me on Twitter or simply subscribe to the blog via email at the box to the right or by following the blog on WordPress.

Haystack is written by Semil Shah, and is published under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA license. Copyright © 2018 Semil Shah.

“I write this not for the many, but for you; each of us is enough of an audience for the other.”— Epicurus