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Red Gate Software is one of the rising stars of the Cambridge Cluster and now they are helping the next wave. Entrepreneurs are provided with a desk, Internet and the biggest draw of all, FREE DELUXE FOOD. We all know that an army marches on it’s stomach but geeks build great businesses powered by sensible nibbles. If you are working 100 hundred hour weeks you need a sensible diet, some exercise and deep sleep.
In Neil Davidson’s blog post The Accidental Incubator there are more details. It fits in well with his recent takeover of the Cambridge Network and contrasts with the way CfEL has moved their Summer School into a general management programme called Ignite which no longer concentrates on entrepreneurs but “corporate innovators” prepared to pay the hefty fee.
Or you can try Brent Hoberman’s PROFounders Fund which has culled a list of 500 applicants to 5, I think. The first investment is in TweetDeck with less than 10% share. Later investments should be more ambitious and the stake higher. Great set of entrepreneurs including the impressive Michael Birch of Bebo fame.
But perhaps avoid the Capital for Enterprise Fund backed by the Government and “administered” by the likes of fund managers Octopus Capital.
If the Government wants to encourage investment in small companies, do it via the EIS scheme with entrepreneurs been given higher and higher tax breaks to put in their cash and time. It is a fact of the Venture Capital world that only the top tier firms spot the winners so fund managers will never make it work; well, hardly ever as the old song goes!
Hope one day to be invited to discuss Equity Fingerprint with the Red Gate Software Springboard aspiring entrepreneurs and take a bite of deluxe food. Or perhaps Hoberman will serve a tasty dish to tempt me.
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