An American startup that is 90% similar to mine just emerged this year, due to lack of funding in a third world country, I couldn’t get to market earlier

Some important things you need to know first:

– I had a 4 year head-start

– I launched twice

– I have applied to a lot of accelerators, including Y-combinator which I applied thrice. I have also reached out to potential investors and prominent leaders in my project's industry to no avail

– I'm not claiming they stole my idea, this is not a complaint but an open discussion on what I could do next

– My location is part of the problem partially, just at the wrong place at the wrong time

– I'm uncomfortable revealing the industry I'm working in at the moment so I won't name the startups

I started working on a project 4 years ago and built an MVP for it, my years were spent looking for co-founders, a team, and most importantly, investors. I got non of them, it was either promises that went nowhere or no replies at all. As a single founder, I knew it would be hard to bring someone on board with the situation in our country, the idea excited them but not enough for them to put in the hard work or money.

You must be wondering, maybe it was a terrible idea? My spirit was broken multiple times but I knew it had value. You may also think I should've looked for the first users since I built it already. Well it isn't that easy, the project's particular industry requires a workforce behind it, think of it as Uber if it launched without on-boarding drivers or with no drivers at all.

I don't know how to say this without sounding like a pompous douchebag but I blame my country or people whichever way you put it for one reason, the lack of vision. The people I met almost always said the same thing, "We aren't ready for that", "This is complicated" etc.. I take part in the blame because I believe I didn't explain it well or sell it good enough. I noticed my shortcomings and worked on it. Years of iteration (for 1 user, me) currently gives me hope in beating this competition that doesn't even know I exist. I believe I have gained experience by studying the idea, doing surveys, iterating, and by launching twice, both times giving me promising metrics but not being able to sustain it due to the reasons I stated above, a team.

This year I just found a way to launch without any help, self-funded and community-driven, and then I see it, there it was on Product Hunt, by 2 founders. The feedback was amazing, for me I took them all personally without question, I was actually happy because this is something I really wanted to exist, and here it is, backed by investors and funded with 7 figures. This also validated my idea in a way and I couldn't be more happier for them.

If I had a lawyer, I know they would stop me from doing what I'd do next, but I still went with it. I emailed them to congratulate them and imply that I had something similar and would love to share my findings/research, they actually have a position open for a Lead who they'd love to have to bring in their ideas. I requested for a shot at that position too. It was in Silicon Valley so maybe this COVID situation would let me be considered for remote work too. That's what I told my self, that's what I did.

It's been over 3 weeks now and both founders haven't replied, I have mail tracking so just one of them opened my email.

I didn't disclose my findings or links nor did I tell them to lawyer up, I offered help and a consideration for a position which I believe I could do good in. I explained in the email that I understand there might be legal issues but I'm happy to cooperate.

Some questions you might ask:

– Is the idea behind the product that common?

No, almost everyone in the industry misses it, I don't think it's worthless either, just that the current model is working well and I believe it shouldn't be that way. I'm a strong believer at this as a user, the other startup's vision is also the same, they believe there is a standard to set and they did it.

– Why don't you just launch this last version?

That's why I'm here, I'm afraid am being delusional and just need a few voices of reasoning

– Is there a patent on it

Mine? no. Theirs? I don't think there is, I searched for it on U.S patent databases and I don't think it's could be deemed as intellectual property in the first place, I could be ignorant about this I really haven't sought legal counselling

Please do ask questions, I'd love to answer.

TLDR: My startup failed after 2 launches and another one with resources and workforce that I don't have just launched right before I wanted to launch a third, final time

Edit: The other startup is behind a paywall and only limited to the iPhone, mine is free to the users and has a model similar to reddit gold where the content is free but you could still support it. It is also available across all platforms

submitted by /u/nocturnalbreadwinner
[link] [comments]
Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

Path forward for successful startup built on third party API

Several years ago I created an app using a free API provided by a large company. For the past 2 years I've been merely maintaining it as I consider it's dependence on the API to be a large risk factor for the business. However, since then, it has grown organically to nearly 1M uniques / month and is pulling in a really nice advertising revenue. It's grown more without me working on it than my current full time startup. And there's a lot of potential to grow it even more.

Given it's recent growth I'd like to revisit the project and make it a legit business without being at the mercy of a third party API. Unfortunately it's totally dependent on the API and I would need to recreate it to some extent in order to be independent. And that will be very challenging.

Recreating the API probably requires forming some sort of formal partnership with a company that has access to certain data. I'm just a one man company and I'm finding it very difficult to get responses from these companies at the moment.

Any advice?

Edit: the API is the Spotify API and I would need metadata, audio files, and recommendation algorithms for a similarly sized music catalog. Presumably other streaming services could offer something sufficient if they were interested in a licensing deal.

submitted by /u/giveusyourlighter
[link] [comments]
Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

TechCabal Daily – This African telco is reportedly planning to layoff a third of its staff – TechCabal

TechCabal Daily – This African telco is reportedly planning to layoff a third of its staff  TechCabal
“nigeria startups when:7d” – Google News

Munich Private Equity Partners closes third fund at €162M, targets investments in Europe and North America

Munich Private Equity Partners (MPEP) is one of the leading private equity houses in Europe. The investment management company’s track record shows its ability to provide access to high-quality and outperforming fund managers. As of June 2020, 109 exited portfolio companies in the MPEP’s fund programs have generated 3.1x the invested capital on an average.

MPEP Fund III Program closed at €162M

MPEP has closed its third private equity program at €162 million with renowned international investors and this is higher than its original target of €100 million for MPEP Fund III. The private equity house intends to focus on the most sought-after fund managers in the mid-cap buyout segment in the established markets of Europe and North America.

With the relationship with its anchor investor, the mid-cap buyout specialist will be able to build up substantial parts of its fund portfolios before it begins active fundraising with institutional investors. As the potential investors get favourable visibility on the manager quality and expected portfolio composition, the blind pool risk associated with these investments is reduced.

David Schäfer, Managing Director of MPEP, said, “We partner with experienced managers who have consistently achieved above-average results in their history and who exhibit strong strategic and operational expertise.”

“At the final close of MPEP Fund III, 14 out of 20 targeted fund investments have already been completed and MPEP has a strong pipeline with several fund investments already in advanced stages of due diligence. “We are certainly not striving to create a private equity index. Our goal is to provide investors access to a focused, high-quality portfolio with adequate diversification, which can capture the outperformance potential of the best managers”, said Christopher Bär, Managing Director of MPEP.

Stock photo from LookerStudio/Shutterstock

The post Munich Private Equity Partners closes third fund at €162M, targets investments in Europe and North America appeared first on Silicon Canals .

Startups – Silicon Canals

Jyoti Bansal’s third startup goes after code security

Jyoti Bansal was part of the AppDynamics founding team, a company that Cisco bought in 2017 for $ 3.7 billion. He might have been content to rest on that big win, but instead he went on to launch Harness and a venture capital arm, Unusual Ventures. Today, he announced his newest company called Traceable, which attacks security at the code level.

Bansal says that security has traditionally looked at protecting the network and hardware, but today the attack surface is more at the software level, and that’s why he decided to start another company. “The software is becoming the primary attack vector for a lot of things. If you look at most of the sophisticated data breaches […], they are happening in the code, not in the network or the infrastructure anymore,” he explained.

Traceable uses software agents to monitor the code for anomalous behavior like someone moving data via an API in an unusual way. The solution leverages machine learning to learn over time what normal behavior looks like. As it builds that understanding, it can identify abnormal activity and flag it or shut it down.

It integrates in other tools like Slack and sends out automated warnings that something could be amiss. This could involve an action like letting the team know it’s shutting down API access for five or 10 minutes to allow someone to explore the problem. If it’s a mistake, the software learns something, but if there’s something wrong the team can continue to block access and fix it.

The company also announced $ 20 million in Series A funding from Unusual Ventures and Big Labs. It’s worth noting that Bansal runs both of these firms. He admits he’s a busy guy, but says running companies is what he loves to do. Even though he could have retired after selling AppDynamics, it’s simply not how he is wired.

“Some people work in some role and once they retire they’re going to do what they enjoy. What I realized is that building companies is what I enjoy,” he said.

As someone who has built three startups, Bansal sees diversity and inclusion as a key success factor, something you have to really work at. “You have to be proactive about this from your recruitment practices to how you try to bring different kinds of diversity in your team,” he said. One of the mistakes he says is that people tend to hire people like themselves, and he learned early on that looking for a “cultural fit” would encourage more homogenized teams. He eliminated that as a hiring filter early on at AppDynamics.

“What I realized is the culture fit idea is a bad thing because it becomes about things like ‘Am I going to grab a beer with this person’ and are they similar to me or someone who I can relate to? But that’s not a good thing really like because that reduces the diversity in your hiring and interview process,” he said.

He is not intimidated about launching a third company in the middle of the pandemic and a weakening economy. In fact, he launched AppDynamics in 2008 just two months before the crash. “In hindsight I felt like that was one of the best thing that happened to me because it shaped who we were as a company — very customer obsessed, heavily focused on building the best product in the market and having a very strong culture inside the company. And that made us very successful,” he said.

He says he is trying to build a similar mindset at Harness and Traceable. To him, a recession tends to force a company to focus and weeds out companies that can’t do that. Traceable is his latest effort to solve a big problem, and pandemic or not, he’s moving forward.

Startups – TechCrunch

How The Largest Country In the Middle East (and the Third in Africa) is Ideal Fertile Ground For Fintech Growth – The Fintech Times

How The Largest Country In the Middle East (and the Third in Africa) is Ideal Fertile Ground For Fintech Growth  The Fintech Times
“nigeria startups when:7d” – Google News

Tether, the most promising stable coin, now the third most valuable cryptocurrency – Nairametrics

Tether, the most promising stable coin, now the third most valuable cryptocurrency  Nairametrics
“nigeria startups when:7d” – Google News

Ripple, third most valuable cryptocurrency, gets approval from the US for money transfers – Nairametrics

Ripple, third most valuable cryptocurrency, gets approval from the US for money transfers  Nairametrics
“nigeria startups when:7d” – Google News