Another week is in the books as OJ is granted parole, Sean Spicer resigns, and Elon Musk may have received verbal approval to build a DC to NYC Hyperloop. If that’s not enough for a hot summer Friday, here’s our weekly pick of news items impacting the innovation ecosystem.
Time for some ICYMI:
Give Me Your Talented, Your Wealthy, Your Entrepreneurs Yearning to Scale…Next Year.
The International Entrepreneurship Rule, which the Obama administration set in motion, was supposed to go into effect this month. Implementation has been delayed until March 2018. The Rule would have allowed 3,000 foreign entrepreneurs entry into the U.S. annually for 30-month stays. To qualify, applicants would have to show they would create U.S. jobs and had reputable sources ready to invest $250,000 in their businesses — a fairly high threshold for success.
The takeaway: Based on what we’re hearing from investors and entrepreneurs, these job creators are planning to go elsewhere and launch their products and hire talent. As reported by Wired, Canada has implemented a startup visa program that’s attracted 60 startups so far and a Global Skills Strategy, which helps entrepreneurs secure work permits for highly skilled foreign workers within two weeks. France and Chile have also announced legislation making it easier for immigrant entrepreneurs to enter and build companies in their countries.
CB Insight’s 68 Successful StartUp Mistakes
Here at Tenor, we value the prodigious content produced by CB Insights, including all the insightful data they just put behind a $100K paywall this week. Recently, the CB Insights team published a deck sharing 68 mistakes that they successfully learned from as they scaled their company. We agree with most of the lessons…but think a few could use some context:
Slide #8 states “Don’t waste money on PR to get customers”. We can’t agree more. In a startup’s earlier stages, PR should be used to introduce your brand and inform your audience; not to sell products or get customers hooked.
Slide #9 states “Don’t chase press in sexy but irrelevant media.”Again, we agree. A strategic communications program should aim to reach very targeted audiences. With key audiences in mind, we often believe clients should seek coverage in trade publications first, perfect messaging and company execution, and then level up to “sexy but relevant” publications after a critical mass of coverage in trade publications has been achieved.
Washington State is the Apple of CNBC’s Eye
For the past 11 years, CNBC has compiled a ranking of America’s Top States for Business. They’ve surveyed business and policy experts, official government sources, the CNBC Global CFO Council, and the Young President’s Organization (YPO). In 2017, Washington state ranks #1 (Georgia was #2, Minnesota #3, Texas #4). The study isn’t an opinion survey, instead it scores all 50 states on 66 metrics across 10 categories of competitiveness.
The takeaway: All is not perfect in Washington, unemployment is 4.5% and the cost of living is high. However, the state understands how to build an innovation economy by leveraging the large, thriving companies that call Washington home to attract startups and highly-skilled talent…not to mention a healthy amount of investment capital to keep it all running.
Washington’s proof points include:
- The state’s economy grew 3.7% in 2016
- The state boasts the nation’s largest concentration of STEM workers
- Washington is the home of Amazon, Microsoft, Costco, Boeing, Alaska Airlines, Tableau, Expedia, as well as a thriving startup scene (Redfin, Chef Software, Avalara, Docusign, etc.)
- Washington businesses attracted nearly $1.6 billion in venture capital last year.
Stay cool and enjoy the weekend!