To VC or Not to VC? To VC or Not to VC?

By Kelsy Harms on July 18, 2013


Should your young company pursue venture capital or not?

That is the question Clint Smith, CEO of Emma, and Vic Gatto, partner at Solidus and Jumpstart Foundry debated over at an event last week at E|SPACES Belle Meade, hosted by the Vanderbilt Healthcare Alumni Association.

Clint Smith built Emma without access to venture capital. As a first time entrepreneur, he didn’t know how to move forward with venture capital. If they had taken venture capital, he said they would have a very different company in some good and some potentially bad ways.

Vic Gatto has long been involved in the VC industry but he realizes technology has allowed companies to launch with less funds. He started the JumpStart Foundry model to meet this need for less seed capital.

Both Clint and Vic encouraged early stage entrepreneurs to explore various funding options. Vic explained “If you need to grow fast to beat competitors you may need VC, if you can grow slowly you have more options.” They emphasized the importance of having the right mentors and expertise at the table from day 1. Vic shared “Successful startups have just as many bumps as the unsuccessful…your team makes the difference.” Do you have the right folks involved in your startup?

They started the presentation off with these videos on getting funding:



The Secret to Getting Funding for Your Startup:




Will Ferrell & John C. Reilly’s 2008 ESPY Demands


TAGS: EntrepreneursEventsFundingVenture Capital

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