Venture capital firms have failed to raise funds totaling more than the $28B raised in 2007, according to Venture Economics. That’s all set to change, says Foundation Capital General Partner Paul Holland. Holland helped take textbook rental company, Chegg public in November. Although Chegg hit the market with a thud, Foundation hopes the company will have a similar trajectory to Netflix, one of the firm’s earlier investments.“Over 200 VC firms will go to market next year, including some of the biggest names in the business and with the recent flurry of high value exits, they will receive a much more welcome reception from institutional investors than any time in the last seven years,” says Holland.Salil Deshpande Managing Director at Bain Capital Ventures is more circumspect. Deshpande joined Bain Capital Ventures from Bay Partners in 2013. At Bay he invested in the Series A in SpringSource, which was acquired by VMWare for $420 million. He was also a seed investor in both Buddy Media, which was acquired by Salesforce.com, and Jambool, which was bought by Google.“Firms with strong brands that have demonstrated consistent stable returns for the last fifteen years should be able to raise (a) large or larger funds in 2014, and (b) easily or more easily. The question is, should they?” he said.
“The Blackberry marketplace will decompose faster than anyone is currently predicting,” says Paul Holland, General Partner at Foundation Capital.There are at least 18 million corporate-supported Blackberries in North America with large companies issuing edicts that they’re unlikely to be supported by corporate IT soon - companies will require their employees to move to iPhones, Android or Windows devices, says Holland.
Large corporations will begin to abandon software production for desktop machines and will begin to issue new versions and updates for mobile devices only, including smart phones and tablets, says Paul Holland, General Partner at Foundation Capital.
“Whenever something gets a name, I become weary and worry that it’s long in the tooth,” says Salil Deshpande, Managing Director at Bain Venture Capital. “For example I invested in the Facebook ecosystem via Buddy Media in 2007 before it had a name, I invested in Platform as a Service (PaaS) via Engine Yard and others before PaaS was a term, I invested in Big Data via DataStax and others before it had a name, and in the API economy via MuleSoft before it had a name,” he said. VCs could become more cautious as the bandwagon-jumping continues on ideas like ‘the internet of things’ in 2014.
Until now the only way to diversify away from ‘fiat currencies,’ which Salil Deshpande, Managing Director at Bain Venture Capital defines as “currencies conjured up and controlled by sovereigns whose central banks one had to trust” was representative currencies such as gold and silver.“Bitcoin will continue to gain more traction, momentum, and credibility; enough for the non-fiat non-representative currency to become a real option for diversification away from fiat currencies. As such it will gradually, but with non trivial volatility, increase in value and eventually trade in a pattern similar to gold,” says Deshpande.“The proper way to think about Bitcoin for now is not as a currency, due to its lack of price-stability, but rather as a commodity,” says Deshpande.“Subtracting the industrial value of gold from the current trading value of gold yields the diversification value of gold, and this is the value addressable by Bitcoin over the long term,” says Deshpande.“There will be many ways to play this, including wallets, remittances and payments, exchanges, and mining, but one simple way to play, which everyone can participate in, is to accumulate Bitcoin,” he added.
Even if you didn't save, the education you’ve been hoping to provide for your children is within reach—provided there’s some pragmatic financial planning involved. Sometimes, the hardest part is simply knowing where to begin. Here a some tips.
Even if you don’t think you'll qualify, fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. You may be pleasantly surprised with the result.
Options include Pell Grants, Academic Competitiveness Grants and National SMART Grants; your child's guidance counselor can you find others.
Civic organizations and religious institutions often have meaningful amounts of aid to dole out.
Applying to plenty of schools means a better chance of getting into more than one; getting into more than one translates to a higher likelihood of receiving a big financial aid package.
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