There Are A Huge Number of People Starting Companies …

Ok I think huge might be overstatement, so I will use a significant number of people starting companies that have  no business doing so.  My focus in investing is on women led start-ups so it gets narrowed to there are a significant number of women starting companies who have no business doing so.  As noted by Tucker Max, this is not a social judgement nor casting aspersions. Many of the women I have seen pitch at Golden Seeds, Pipeline Angels, Astia, Vator and 500 Startups are very sincere, and are passionate about their ideas. Sometimes, they are great but the idea is not. Sometimes the reverse is true.  Golden Seeds and Pipeline Angels due their exclusive focus on women led start-ups, tend in my opinion, to see startups that have as a selling point that it is a company started by a woman. While woman entrepreneurs statistically do better in starting companies than young men, there still needs to be a solid business plan. And regrettably this is not limited to women focused angel groups,  500 startups had perhaps the lamest recent class of entrepreneurs I have seen in the three years.

Tucker Max also noted that some of the startup founders in olden days would be called charlatans or snake oil salesman (although most of course are not.) But, I saw a presentation by a woman hired to be CEO for a company founded by an ER doctor and his mother. The product was a gum that was competing with Airborne, its selling point that as a gum it did not need FDA approval nor water.  The presentation had many inconsistencies, and in the Q&A that followed, one investor referred to the product as snake oil, which was both amusing and accurate. She was of course chastised for making such a negative comment,  as women investors we are supposed to make only supportive comments. The product remains snake oil.

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