This week, I wrote about a new startup out of Fayetteville, Arkansas called Engine. Cofounder John James had previously founded another startup in the area called Acumen Brands, which raised about $100 million during its history. After selling a majority stake in the company, he began using that money to invest in other startups, but he wondered what the best next step was in order to achieve his goal of making Fayetteville a better place for startups.
The way he phrased his dilemma to me: “Is my time better served mentoring 10 people, or taking a 10 percent chance at building a billion-dollar company?”
James decided that founding another startup was the best use of his time — that the best way to put a startup community on the map is by creating a success story. On the other hand, as I’ve written about previously, if too much attention is placed on one startup in the community and that startup fails, it can cast a negative light on the whole community.
I’m curious to hear your thoughts — is it better for a startup community if an experienced entrepreneur channels their energy toward helping other startups or building their own? Or are there any other “best uses of time” that I’m missing? Send me your thoughts via email, or tweet me @ahhensel.
Heartland Tech Reporter
Check out this video from Talks at Google: “Brad Feld & David Cohen: Building Techstars”
From the Heartland Tech channel
GUEST: If you told me seven years ago that my friends and I would be running a software company with thousands of customers and four employees in an old refurbished Ford plant in the heart of North Dakota, I’d have said you were crazy. But that’s exactly what we did, thanks to the $100 we each chipped […]
The “Silicon Slopes” of Utah can now claim another homegrown public techcompany. Pluralsight, a Farmington, Utah-based subscription ed techcompany, began trading on the Nasdaq today after raising more than $310 million in its IPO and selling 20.7 million shares to the public. By the end of the day, the company’s stock price had […]
GUEST: For those of you paying attention, the weather skipped spring this year and we in the Midwest find ourselves just tipping into warm temperatures. To keep from going crazy during those cold months, I would take the kids to a nearby pet store. This store has various and sundry kittens, puppies, and rodents that kids can manhandle […]
Separate reports from North Carolina and Northern Virginia suggested yesterday that Apple was considering both East Coast locations for its upcoming fourth U.S. campus, but a new report is adding significant weight to North Carolina’s prospects. WRAL reports that Apple could announce its commitment to the Tar Heel State in early June, as legislators are close to […]
What the selectiveness of your college says about where you’re likely to move after. (via Slate)
While tech companies in California are building things that change the world, they sometimes don’t feel connected to it. Minnesota is different. (via Star Tribune)
Access to talented folks and smart capital certainly makes the process of starting up a company easier, and it may increase the likelihood that a startup will survive long enough to raise some money and build a sustainable business. (via Crunchbase News)
Prototype Prime, a hardware and software startup incubator in Peachtree Corners, has recently been named the new home for the Advanced Vehicle Technology Accelerator, an initiative to discover and test new technologies for motor vehicles, including autonomous cars. (via Atlanta Inno)