Category: Funding

Quality Assurance in Tech Startup Investing

I founded a quality assurance company in 2008 and, since then, we`ve worked on the number of projects with different levels of investment funding. Not only did these projects require multi-stage management, but product owners and investors also needed to maintain comprehensive control over progress.

Today`s competitive market leaves no options but to utilize the latest digital technologies to gain the edge over the competition. In attempts to reduce costs and accelerate product delivery, IT companies undertake a variety of initiatives. But often, instead of anticipated success, these initiatives bump into schedule, budget and development hurdles, turn into troubled projects and fail. 

Although Project Management Institute (PMI) reported a 20% decrease in project failure rates, the amount of money lost is still staggering. The report estimates nearly $97 million to be wasted for every $1 billion invested in the product.

Data from CIO estimates a 50% project failure in the IT industry. The Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey found that weak ownership is one of the main reasons why 46% of IT projects never go live. This means the team lacks involvement from the executive level, while the process itself lacks sufficient control and support. However, the experience of our team says these issues aren`t the prior reason for failure. Unqualified ownership leads to poor monitoring of the development life cycle evident in 90% of the projects we`ve worked on. 

Why does project performance control matter?

Project performance control is a key aspect of successfully launching and growing a startup. Why? Because it works both ways.

  • As a product owner or investor, you`re on the safe side. 75% of IT teams anticipate project failure at the very beginning, according to Geneca research. What the survey says is that the issues of IT projects are usually hidden below the surface right


How Corporate Partnerships Can Help Local Startups Grow

There’s an assumption in the startup world that founders have to move to San Francisco, New York City, or another major hub in order to be successful. So you might be surprised to hear exactly how much of an impact a startup in the middle of Ireland can have – especially with the support of a corporate partner – and why staying put is so vital.

The benefits of staying close to home

Pest Pulse is headquartered in Dublin and is an alumnus of Start Co., an accelerator based in Memphis, Tennessee. Start Co. had already formed a strong relationship with ServiceMaster, the Fortune 1000 parent company of businesses like Terminix, by the time Pest Pulse was in the program. This existing relationship enabled Start Co. to introduce the well-established corporate, ServiceMaster, to the rising startup, Pest Pulse. ServiceMaster loved what Pest Pulse was up to so much that they decided to work together on a pilot. In doing so, the relationship proved to be successful in that it allowed Pest Pulse to build its product and increase its revenue without having to move out of Dublin.

Staying at home doesn’t just benefit the startup, though. Whether they’re in small Midwestern cities or on the coast of Ireland, startups can be especially important for their local economy because they give employees the means to save money and earn a living, equipping them to build wealth for not only their families, but also their communities.

For example, in Kansas City, Missouri, startups were responsible for creating 14,575 jobs locally in 2017. Further, a Kauffman Report from two years earlier found that the only net new jobs created in recent years came from companies no more than five years old, showing that startups are job creators.

However, help from larger companies


How to Pick a Charity Your Business Should Support

It is remarkably important for brands to give back to the community, including by donating some of their time and other resources toward helping worthy causes. However, not all charities and nonprofits are worth your time: Some lack transparency, while others may have management issues or other potential problems.

So how can companies decide who best to support? To find out more, we asked a panel of Young Entrepreneur Council members what qualities business leaders should look for in a charitable or nonprofit organization. These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. 

1. Transparency

I think it’s important that nonprofits are transparent with their donors and the general public. If you want people to trust and support you, you have to give people a reason to see that you’re trustworthy. Once a charity is viewed as unethical, it’s hard to recover from that title. – Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

2. Great results and accomplishments

Before I’m willing to invest in a charity, I want to know what they have accomplished in the past. Are they known for helping out in disastrous situations, or do they only show up when things are at ease and they want donations? – Blair Williams, MemberPress

3. How the charity uses donations

Actually seeing or knowing how the charity uses their donation is important to many people. With some charities, they lay out exactly what your donation is going to be used for, while with others it’s a little vague. Decide if knowing exactly how your donation is going to help is important to you when choosing a charity to support. – Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

4. An informative website

Does their website detail where the proceeds go and who gets


How to Use a Credit Card to Finance Your Small Business

Financing a small business can be approached from multiple directions. It’s important to understand what the market offers you and how to use those deals to their full potential because this initial stage of your company’s development is crucial to its long-term success.

A credit card is one of the more popular methods for financing a small business, but it comes with a few caveats that have to be considered carefully. Most importantly, it’s not the exact same thing as a small business loan and it comes with some different implications that you’ll need to be aware of.

The basics of using a business credit card

Using a credit card to finance your small business should be treated no differently from a regular loan in that you have to think carefully about your ability to repay the money and keep your balance in check. However, credit cards can provide you with a lot more in the way of floating resources. They make it easy to get a smaller amount of cash when you need it, helping you keep your balance in the positive while you’re waiting to get paid. If some of your clients are late with their payments, it can affect your operations down the line. But that doesn’t have to be the case if you can cover the negative balance with the help of a credit card.

In fact, most modern businesses rely heavily on perpetually-open lines of credit. This is valid for pretty much all sectors of the market, including larger companies. With that in mind, you should definitely not be afraid to rely on credit lines to supplement your cash flow. In fact, it might be the best option you have in many cases.

Consider alternative funding sources

You should also consider your other options


Small Business Guide to SBA Loan Default

  • Do your homework to find out what your options are
  • Gather as much data as you can
  • Work with the SBA on a settlement

Running a business can be tough ⁠– it doesn’t always work out the way we planned. This can leave us worrying about paying back those pesky business loans. This guide is crafted to help anyone who:

I’m Jason Milleisen, the founder of Distressed Loan Advisors. As an SBA default expert, I use my wealth of professional experience to negotiate settlements. This is thanks to my stint as a workout officer for the largest SBA in the U.S., followed by the past 10 years of working directly with borrowers as a consultant, I’ve learned a lot I can share. 

If you’re looking to cross a bridge (or perhaps a gauntlet would be more appropriate), you have to start somewhere. This means taking that crucial first step of admitting to yourself that failure (and the resulting default) is a real possibility. Where do you get started when you’ve defaulted on your SBA loan? How do you get from zero to one?

Take a look in the mirror

While it may be emotional to have your SBA loan hanging over you, consider your options wisely. Before the SBA will even sniff at a settlement, they need to know you’ve already done everything in your power to pay off your loan in full.

Your loan is likely secured by your business assets. If the collective value of these business assets will cover the loan, you’ll need to sell them to repay the full amount. If you’re lucky, you might not have to sell everything, and your business can still continue to operate on bare-bones resources. The reality, however, is that in most situations, the business folds.

In the vast