25 Investment Companies please see the file HP Tech Ventures, the corporate VC arm of the giant aims to further HP’s mission by nurturing startups that can

please see the file 

HP Tech Ventures, the corporate VC arm of the giant aims to further HP’s mission by nurturing startups that can add significant value to HP’s industry-leading technology now and in the future. By forging strategic partnerships with cutting-edge disruptive startups, HP Tech Ventures hopes to foster an ecosystem of innovation. As a corporate venture arm of a world-class company with a global supply chain and 75 years of experience in creating trailblazing technology, HP Tech Ventures is well-positioned to help its portfolio companies scale and grow rapidly.

Objective

The objective of this project is to identify startups that fulfil the criteria laid out by HP Tech Ventures and analyze the gathered information about the startup to determine whether the startup is an attractive investment for HPTV. This project has three very important components:

Use a combination of creative search strategies to source startups in the hybrid work area

Gather information that are indicators of a startup’s potential

Analyze the indicators to determine whether the startup will make for a good investment and justify the opinion with a clear, coherent, and compelling rationale

In addition, make sure you are mentally shortlisting the companies that stand out to you. You will later be required to pitch ONE startup so it’s a good idea to keep that in mind while sourcing them.

Below, you can view the labels for the tasks created by other students. If your project requires it, you should check this list to make sure you are not creating duplicate work which may not be counted.
Tip: Use CTL-f (or Command-f on a Mac) to search the list.


Rubric

A successful startup profile will satisfy all of the following conditions:

· The startup is in fact, a legitimate and authentic startup

· The information about the startup has been accurately stated and sourced from reliable sources

· The information is intelligible and well-organized with no glaring omissions or inaccuracies

· The information has been analyzed thoughtfully to judge investment potential and clearly articulated in the rationale

· The rating of investment potential is reasonable and justified

Feedback stars and what they mean:

5- A great possible investment. All the conditions have been satisfied and the rationale has been clearly stated

4- Overall, a possible investment. Misses one of the conditions

3- Makes a fair candidate for investment. Misses a convincing enough rationale

2- Not a candidate for investment, but manages to meet some criteria. Misses several conditions

1- Not a startup or a defunct startup. Misses most conditions

Objective

The objective of this project is to identify startups that fulfil the criteria laid out by HP Tech Ventures and analyze the gathered information about the startup to determine whether the startup is an attractive investment for HPTV. This project has three very important components:

1. Use a combination of creative search strategies to source startups in the hybrid work area 

2. Gather information that are indicators of a startup’s potential 

3. Analyze the indicators to determine whether the startup will make for a good investment and justify the opinion with a clear, coherent, and compelling rationale 

In addition, make sure you are mentally shortlisting the companies that stand out to you. You will later be required to pitch ONE startup so it’s a good idea to keep that in mind while sourcing them. 

Instructions

Step 1: Understand the investment criteria

An investment thesis is the criteria that investment professionals use to determine whether the target is worth considering. This is usually based on research, experience, and the mission of the investor or investment fund. Recall what you learned about HP Tech Ventures’ mission. Now carefully go over the specific criteria for hybrid work startups 

HPTV hybrid work criteria

The goal here is to identify startup companies that HP could make investments in or partner with, where the company’s product or service could support HP’s ability to resolve problems in the hybrid workplaces of the late-pandemic and post-pandemic world. Review the flashcards below by clicking on the “flip” icon on the bottom right. 

Stage of funding

Stage of funding is NOT a consideration for HPTV. Any stage of funding; pre-seed, seed, Series A, B, C…, is acceptable. However, like started earlier, it should not be a public company. 

Evidence of progress

In order to be considered an attractive investment target, there should progress that indicates future success.

Startups that display signs of having achieved a product-market fit. To describe in a nutshell, product-market fit is the degree to which a product satisfies a strong market demand.It’s a scenario in which a product satisfies customer needs in a way that alternative products do not. There are a number of ways to spot it; high growth of users or customers, positive press and general buzz about the product, etc,

LINK: Read more about Product-Market Fit

Pre-IPO (Initial Public Offer)

· The startup should be a private company; this means that any company that is listed on a public stock exchange is NOT eligible for investment or consideration.

· Pre-IPO also means that startups that have already had an exit via IPO (becoming a public company by getting listed on a public stock exchange of any country) or acquisition will NOT work. You can find out whether a startup has been acquired or has had an IPO by doing a quick search on the internet.

As a quick example, Zoom Video, Inc had a successful exit and became a public company in 2019. So, Zoom would NOT be considered as a target company. 

GlobalHP is a global multinational technology company; so the startup can be located anywhere in the world.

Stage of funding

Stage of funding is NOT a consideration for HPTV. Any stage of funding; pre-seed, seed, Series A, B, C…, is acceptable. However, like started earlier, it should not be a public company. 

Step 2: Identify and profile the startup 

Use the startup search strategies to identify and profile the startups. Don’t rely on any one source but use a combination of strategies instead. 

You will be gathering the following information to profile the startup. 


Demographic Information

: Some basic information for HPTV to verify 

· Company Name

· Company Website(s)

· Startup/Company aggregator (such as crunchbase) Page

· Company City, State, Country


Product/Service Information
: Understand the product/service to check whether it is relevant and offers an innovative solution to a hybrid work challenge and the general viability of the company 

· Product or Service being offered

· Problem product or service purports to solve

· Who or what is the paid customer?

· Are there users or stakeholders aside from paid customers?


Funding Information
: These are indicators of the stage of the company (HP can determine its investment strategy based on the stage of the startup company), possible idea of what its valued at, and is also an indicator of progress 

· Total Funding in USD Millions

· Most recent funding stage or type, and year

 


Team Information
: This is crucial information to determine if the founders and team have the required expertise, qualifications, and ability to solve the challenges posed by not only the problem being addressed but also ones that come with being an entrepreneur

· Founder information

· Number of founders

· Founder Names 

· Founder LinkedIn Links

· Founder team Top-10 school degrees

· Is there at least one technical and business co-founder?

· Something relevant or unique about the founders’ background

· CEO demographic information

· CEO Name

· CEO LinkedIn Link

· CEO Email

· CEO undergraduate school

· CEO undergraduate degree(s)

· CEO graduate school – if applicable

· CEO graduate degree(s) – if applicable

· Number of Full Time Employees


Investment Potential (Traction)
These are possible indicators of future success of a startup and are important both for you and HPTV to assess. 

· Notable investors or participation in accelerator programs 


LINK: 100 Global Startup Accelerators

LINK: Forbes Top 10 Accelerators based on Successful Exits

· Links to positive news or publicity about the company

· Is there a minimum viable product for sale?

· Number of paid customers

· Annual Revenue (if available)


Intellectual Property
It’s a positive indicator of technological progress if the startup company has original, patented technology. 

· Number of filed (provisional) and granted patents

· Any additional patent red flags/issues to be aware of like  additional owners, limited exclusivity, defensible patents to stand challenges, haven’t been filed due to lack of funding

· Links to notable patents (use patents.google.com) 


Total Addressable Market
: This is an estimate of the market opportunity and is also a factor considered when valuing a startup and determining whether and how much to invest

· Market size estimate (either based on secondary research or your best estimate)

· Links to research on market size

· Price target customer pays

· Target customer description (Personas)


Risk from competitors: 
It’s crucial to be aware of the threats and risks posed by competition so they can be eliminated or considered when making an investment decision 

Describe the competitive environment

Identify the top competitor

Why is the top competitor a potential threat?

Step 3: Evaluate the startup and provide an honest rating 

Give the startup an honest assessment in the form of a final rating on a 1-5 scale (1- not eligible for investment 5- attractive investment). Use the information you have already gathered and carefully consider all factors. State your rationale in a clear, compelling manner by stating reasons that you believe would make this startup a worthwhile consideration.

Watch the following video to hear Mitchell Weinstock speak about some finer aspects of evaluating startup potential. This may have some references to an earlier project but play close attention to the essence of his advice on the general factors to consider, they will apply even to hybrid work. 

Step 4: Check for duplicates 

In the last tab of the task section, you will find all the startups that have already been sourced by students. If you find that the company has already been sourced, try picking a different one. 

Closing Notes

Please span to spend about 40 hours on this project. In the next project, you will learn how to make a pitch presentation and create your own for any ONE top choice of startup that you have sourced that you believe HP should absolutely invest in


What is deal sourcing?

In a VC, deal sourcing is the first stage of the deal flow process- it refers to the process of identifying investment opportunities in a particular market. The objective is to create and maintain a large funnel or pipelines of relevant and promising deals. Relevant and promising are the two key words here – it costs a VC time and money pursuing deals that do not meet criteria and/or have little potential for growth.

VCs source deals from a combination of their networks, referrals, and research. In this project, you will be using some research tools used by VCs. Contrary to what most might think, there is no secret database of startups that has all the information. 

For company research, these are the methods that might help you:

· Strategic search terms and techniques on Google Search 

· Startup and product searches like Crunchbase search by industry , Pitchbook, Crunchbase lists like Pharma companies with early-stage venture funding, Startup Tracker, or Product Hunt

· Listicles and features on startups like Forbes Next Billion Dollar Startups or similar lists on TechCrunch, Mashable, Wired and other startup focussed business outlets

· Award lists – everybody loves an award! Search online for local contests or awards that you may not even have heard of. For example, did you know there is a Global Startup Award

· Startup accelerator news featuring startups that have secured investments from incubators and accelerators: The Seed Database, AcceleratorInfo.com, The MBA is Dead, and 37 Angels are some examples. 

· Investment portfolios of the biggest investors and VCs in the sector 

· Use sector specific startup directories like Immersive 

· Take the startups from the practice exercise and find their competitors/similar companies on Owler or Alternative to. You may need to sign up for a free trial in order to use some of these resources

· Don’t just add startups that you find on existing databases or lists from platforms like Crunchbase blindly, evaluate them for criteria. Some of the terminology  may be hard to understand, get familiar with some basics about the field and search for terms that don’t make sense. This way, you will be able to judge how novel or innovative the startup is. 

· Use a combination of methods to get the best results. For example, search for “Health monitoring device” startups, find lists and collections, look for specific information on funding rounds and technology using the startup’s own website and Crunchbase.

· This is also a great opportunity to explore your local or school library. Other externs have found great success with the resources such as Marketline, which organizes thousands of company profiles that you can filter by select metrics.

Company Research Tips

Company research involves a fair amount of detective work, it’s not only about checking the boxes of information you want, but also about reading between the lines, cross-referencing, and even some guesswork. Being resourceful is key here. We have compiled a list of free tools (some might require payments beyond a certain number of searches, etc.) that can be used to find information. Please note that we do not require students to pay for any of these services. Some of these tools provide limited free trials; you may take advantage of these free trials but please remember to cancel the trial and remove payment information before the trial ends (phone reminders really help!).

1.Company Website

You can discern a lot of information from the company’s own website, including key persons, contact information, and press information that can provide clues into various aspects of their operations and strategy. 

2.LinkedIn (free & paid) 

You can search, filter, and browse company information on LinkedIn, including the people associated with the company. 

3.Apollo.io

Apollo is an automated email service and has a powerful database of company information, including employee and revenue data.

.Similar Web (free)

SimilarWeb shows an analysis of web traffic visiting the website. A section called “Competitors & Similar Sites” shows websites that compete for traffic

5.Wikipedia (free)

A comprehensive list of companies from Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia, created and edited by volunteers around the world and hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation.

6.Crunchbase (free & paid)

Crunchbase can help you look at company data and identify trends and better understand the market.

7.Owler

Owler offers reliable information on private companies, particularly revenue and other hard-to-find information. It allows 10 searches on the free plan. However, you can switch up email addresses to use the free plan multiple times. Watch the video below to learn a simple workaround for the paywall.


Company Research Tips

Company research involves a fair amount of detective work, it’s not only about checking the boxes of information you want, but also about reading between the lines, cross-referencing, and even some guesswork. Being resourceful is key here. We have compiled a list of free tools (some might require payments beyond a certain number of searches, etc.) that can be used to find information. Please note that we do not require students to pay for any of these services. Some of these tools provide limited free trials; you may take advantage of these free trials but please remember to cancel the trial and remove payment information before the trial ends (phone reminders really help!).

1.Company Website

You can discern a lot of information from the company’s own website, including key persons, contact information, and press information that can provide clues into various aspects of their operations and strategy. 

2.LinkedIn (free & paid) 

You can search, filter, and browse company information on LinkedIn, including the people associated with the company. 

3.Apollo.io

Apollo is an automated email service and has a powerful database of company information, including employee and revenue data. 

Click to pop out video

4.Similar Web (free)

SimilarWeb shows an analysis of web traffic visiting the website. A section called “Competitors & Similar Sites” shows websites that compete for traffic

5.Wikipedia (free)

A comprehensive list of companies from Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia, created and edited by volunteers around the world and hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation.

6.Crunchbase (free & paid)

Crunchbase can help you look at company data and identify trends and better understand the market.

Click to pop out video

7.Owler

Owler offers reliable information on private companies, particularly revenue and other hard-to-find information. It allows 10 searches on the free plan. However, you can switch up email addresses to use the free plan multiple times. Watch the video below to learn a simple workaround for the paywall.

Click to pop out video

8.Inc 5000 

Most Inspiring Companies of 2018 based on Inc 5000. Comes together with their annual report looks at these fast-growing innovators — and how they made the list.

9.Hoovers (paid)

Company database provided by Hoovers. This comprehensive commercial database of more than 120 million business records to uncover targeted leads and new sales opportunities.

10.AngelList (free and paid)

Search AngelList’s database of over 800000 companies. Filter by location, fundraising, team, and more.

11.Global Open Data Index

List of registered (limited liability) companies. Open data from company registers may be used for many ends: e.g. enabling customers and businesses to see with whom they deal, or to see where a company has registered offices.

12.MIT Libraries

Business Databases by Category according to MIT, Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License.

13.Datapo

Detailed analysis of counterparties. Registration data and finance 78 400 726 companies from around the world.

14.Evidon

Evidon users supply much of the information that comprises their Company Database, which includes every business that uses audience data in some way, including for online behavioral advertising. 

https://cdn.paragonone.com/files/training/images/Company-search-tip.png

Startup Search Strategies

 VCs source deals from a combination of their networks, referrals, and research. In this project, you will be using some research tools used by VCs. Contrary to what most might think, there is no secret database of startups that has all the information. 


Industry Knowledge

Startup Search Strategies

 VCs source deals from a combination of their networks, referrals, and research. In this project, you will be using some research tools used by VCs. Contrary to what most might think, there is no secret database of startups that has all the information. 

Click to pop out video

For company research, these are the methods that might help you:

· Strategic search terms and techniques on Google Search 

· Startup and product searches like Crunchbase search by industry , Pitchbook, Crunchbase lists like Pharma companies with early-stage venture funding, Startup Tracker, or Product Hunt

Click to pop out video

· Listicles and features on startups like Forbes Next Billion Dollar Startups or similar lists on TechCrunch, Mashable, Wired and other startup focussed business ou

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