Author Archives: dan

Women in Tech

A list of the Best Cities for Women in Tech just came out, and the showing for Florida cities was embarrassing.   Out of 54 total cities making the list, only one Florida city, Jacksonville, made the list at #53.  According to this survey based upon 2010-2013 US Census data for Jacksonville, women filled just 26% of […]

Pitch 6: SharkTank Near the Shark Attacks Capital of the World

Just an hour from New Smyrna Beach, home to the most shark attacks in the world, entrepreneurs are honing their pitch in Orlando for Pitch6, Florida’s version of the nationally popular spectacle that is Shark Tank.  FloridaNext and Brighthouse have partnered on a series of Pitch6 events across Central Florida and tomorrow night it’s Orlando’s turn. […]

Pasteuria Bioscience Acquired by Syngenta for $113M

Congratulations to the management and investors of Pasteuria Bioscience on announcing their acquisition by Swiss agribusiness giant Syngenta (SYG) for $86 million, plus another $27M earnout. The acquisition of Pasteuria represents another big win for Gainesville’s strong research base, entrepreneurs and startup cluster on the heels of a large $18M funding round for Trendy Entertainment and […]

FVB’s Disclosure Policy

Hey, it’s me, Dan Rua. Florida Venture Blog by Dan Rua is my personal blog focused on a variety of topics. In addition to sharing perspective, experience and opinions, I use this blog as a testbed for multiple online technologies. In fact, much of this Disclosure Policy was built with the DP Generator over at […]

Startup Employee Stock Options

I’ve wanted to share a post about entrepreneur stock option planning for some time; one of the standard discussions I have with every founder I back shortly after we close funding together. Surprisingly there aren’t many thorough posts on the topic, but I did find a quality series posted by John Nesheim back in 2007. […]

Amazon EC2 Cloud Outage: Hiccup or Wakeup Call?

Last week Amazon Web Service’s (AWS) Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) was down…not just minutes, or hours, but for days. In the process it took down a significant chunk of new web services like Foursquare, Quora, Reddit, and multiple IZEA properties such as WeReward, SponsoredTweets & SocialSpark. Those were long hours and days… It was frustrating […]

FlexiSpy, ShopKick, Roving Bugs and a New Breed of Spyware?

Given all the coverage of iPhone, Android, Blackberry and Windows Mobile apps lately,  I’m surprised I’ve seen relatively little discussion of the new privacy issues some apps present — particularly when they leverage phone resources such as the microphone.  Microphone spying may have been a small issue when many desktops didn’t have microphones or microphones […]

InnovationSquare Launches

I attended yesterday’s launch of InnovationSquare and applaud the cooperation between the university and the city to get this launched.  UF President Bernie Machen and Brian Beach definitely “get it”, but buildings are only a piece of the puzzle for our best entrepreneurs.  InnovationSquare’s success will depend upon everyone in Gainesville’s innovation community including GAIN, […]

MSNBC BreakingNews Paid Link on Drudge?

Is it just me or is there something odd about this “TWITTER BREAKING NEWS FEED…” link in the typical content area of Drudge Report (bottom link in the pic on right)?  It links to the twitter account @breakingnews — an account that appears to have been purchased by MSNBC within the last couple years.  Do […]

SVB: Venture Investing is Less Risky Than You Think

I received this August 2010 Venture Capital Update from Silicon Valley Bank and thought the fund-of-funds perspective could be of interest to entrepreneurs. It’s a bit of inside baseball, but it never hurts to understand how your investor’s, investors think. Aaron Gershenberg, Sven Weber, and Jason Liou did a nice job pulling this together and […]

Random Hacks of Kindness

For those of you coding superheroes trying to figure out how to apply your powers for good, rather than evil, I stumbled across a few initiatives focused on coding for causes (via FloridaCreatives).  If you’ve taken part in any of these, please share your experiences here: Random Hacks of Kindness: a community of developers, geeks […]

Twitter Clarifies: Tweeters Own Their Tweets, Sponsored or Not

Twitter has clarified their announcement from yesterday that: “aside from Promoted Tweets, we will not allow any third party to inject paid tweets into a timeline on any service that leverages the Twitter API.” This broad statement triggered a rash of “sky is falling” … posts … about … Twitter’s desire to kill … the … advertising segment … of their […]

The Sales Power of Silence

Just a quick post today about silence… I’m no sales guru, but I’ve been on enough sales calls to experience the power of silence. Salespeople that always feel the need to fill empty conversation space rarely build the rapport or learn as much about their customers as salespeople that are OK with quiet. That rapport […]

Help Haiti

Like many of you, I’ve been wondering how best to help the Haiti earthquake victims. The following list (thanks Bro!) makes it easy… Disaster relief organizations are mobilizing to aid Haiti – and are asking for help. Funds are needed to provide enough safe water, temporary shelter and vital medical supplies. UNICEF and Save the […]

How to Approach VCs

I got a great set of questions from an entrepreneur (Delena) on an earlier post, concerning how to approach, qualify and follow-up with VCs. I’ve heard these tactical communication questions a bit more often in the past year so I thought I’d expand upon at least one of Delena’s questions here. Delena asked “How long […]

IZEAFest at SeaWorld Recap

After attending IZEAFest @ SeaWorld last weekend, I was planning to share a summary of the event here. However, I see that Convention News TV has already created a very nice video detailing the event, including clips from speakers such as Chris Brogan (@chrisbrogan), Aaron Brazell (@technosailor), Rae Hoffman (@sugarrae), and others. IZEA and other […]

Florida Growth Fund

Earlier this week I attended a Florida Venture Forum welcome event for the Florida Growth Fund, a $250 million hybrid fund-of-funds managed by Hamilton Lane for the Florida State Board of Administration. A say “hybrid” because the fund has two missions: 1) invest into Florida-focused venture capital funds and 2) invest directly into Florida companies. […]

Venture Capital Syndicates

I’ve written before about how tough markets like this really separate the wheat from the chaff within a company. As if your company were a foxhole, you get to see who stays to fight by your side and who runs to another foxhole with more protection; or worse, who runs away from the fight altogether […]

Dystonia Cure Within Reach for Tyler’s Hope

I’ve blogged here before about Tyler’s Hope and wanted to share a big day for Tyler and his family. This morning CNN.com posted the video below and TylersHope.org is getting bombarded with people wanting to help find a Dystonia cure. How can you help? 1) Learn more at TylersHope.org; 2) Join the Tyler’s Hope Facebook […]

When Marketers Collude, Bloggers Lose

As an active investor in social media, I’ve followed the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) since it’s founding by a handful of marketers back in 2004. The growth of marketers in the organization is a testament to the power unlocked by consumer generated content. The core of that power rests with the content creators […]