Startup Port Newsletter

By Startup Port Editorial Staff

Startup Port Newsletter - Issue #11





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Startup Port Newsletter

July 8 · Issue #11 · View online

Create + Collaborate + Launch

We are pleased to send you this edition of the Startup Port Newsletter. A lot of good things happened lately. We have been busy striking new partnership, alliance and collaboration deals with the best industry solution providers in their fields. We will share all the good news in the upcoming editions of our newsletter. 
In this issue:
  • Short list of startups that raised funds in June
  • Don’t try to do everything alone
  • The impact of copyright infringement 
  • A Chicago born startup raises $3.8 M
  • Happy belated Independence Day, do we know what we are celebrating?
  • Our take on Time Management 
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Thank you for taking the time to read our Newsletter.

Today’s startups face a host of new challenges. The marketplace is more competitive than ever before, and statistics show that roughly 80 percent of new startups fail. Success requires a lot of planning and vision. Beyond that, it requires hard work and knowing how to fix your subject matter gaps. We at Startup Port empower founders to better understand their businesses, and provide the resources necessary for business success. Our purpose is to help founders understand and mitigate the risks associated with launching their businesses, so that they can meet and exceed their goals.
If you are tired of reading blogs and articles, attending events, listening to mentors and wasting time in incubators, dead ends - wrong assumptions and exercises in futility come to Startup Port to find the best solutions to empower you for your success.
The place to turn for the right answers
The place to turn for the right answers
Chicago Innovation
Chicago Innovation
First things first, here are the Chicago companies that raised funds in June
June was a slower month for venture capital funding in Chicago, but a significant one for the local fintech community.
Over the course of the month, Chicago tech and startup companies raised at least $37 million, according to data compiled by ChicagoInno. June’s funding numbers were a bit higher than May, when Chicago tech and startup companies raised only about $10 million. However, June’s fundings were still significantly down compared to April, when local tech raised more than $110 million.
Below are eight Chicago tech and startup companies and organizations that raised money in June.
Bento for Business: The financial management software maker that helps companies keep tabs on employee expenses raised $9 million in a new funding round led by Edison Partners and included backing from Comcast Ventures and MissionOG. Bento has now raised more than $18 million since launching in 2013.
Based in Chicago and San Francisco, the startup has created a card-based digital spend management product for small and medium-sized businesses, which helps them prevent unauthorized spending by controlling employee spending prior to a purchase.
City Bureau: The local media startup received a $1 million grant from the MacArthur Foundation as part of the Jack Fuller Legacy Initiative. The news organization said the funds will help them to expand their initiatives to diversify the local media ecosystem.
Regroup Therapy: This local startup that provides mental health services by videoconferencing raised $5.5 million. Investors included OCA Ventures, HLM Venture Partners, Frist Cressey Ventures, OSF Ventures, Hyde Park Angels, HBS Angels, Impact Engine and Further Fund.
tastytrade: The fintech company raised $20 million in a Series C funding round led by TCV, a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm that has provided more than $1.5 billion to fintech companies. tastytrade’s total funding now sits at nearly $60 million. The startup, which has offices in the West Loop and employs 100 people, says the funds will help it grow its trading and investment media platform.
Additionally, four Chicago startup and tech organizations were awarded grants totaling $1.7 million that will be distributed over the next two years. The funding is part of the Blackstone Inclusive Entrepreneurship Challenge, an initiative run by the New York-based Blackstone Charitable Foundation and ChicagoNEXT, the tech-focused division of World Business Chicago. The following organizations were selected because their impact in inclusive entrepreneurship will extend across Chicago and into other regions across the country: (the Blackstone Charitable Foundation, in partnership with ChicagoNEXT of World Business Chicago, has invested in the following entrepreneurship platforms to support new ventures and job creation.)
Bethel New Life, $400,000 – Funding will allow Bethel New Life, an organization seeking to transform Chicago’s West Side communities, to expand its Business Innovation Technology program and create a new Design Thinking Institute that will bring technology training to community development organizations throughout Chicago.
BLUE1647, $450,000 – Funding will allow BLUE1647, an innovation center and business accelerator that fosters economic development, technology education, and workforce development, primarily for people of color, to implement BLUECONTINUITY, an effort to expand and tailor their course offerings to a wider community. Funding will also support BLUEPROCURE, a program to help minority and women-owned businesses secure procurement opportunities.
Bunker Labs, $450,000 – Funding will allow Bunker Labs, an organization empowering military veterans to become leaders in entrepreneurship and innovation, to launch a fifty state expansion of Launch Lab Online, which allows veterans and military families to learn about entrepreneurship and develop their business at any time, from any place. Funding will also support CEOcircle, a cohort based program that provides additional resources to later-stage founders.
Future Founders, $400,000 – Funding will allow Future Founders, an organization focused on inspiring the next generation of young entrepreneurs, to expand their Future Founders Residency, a program that fosters the development of diverse millennial entrepreneurs with one-on-one mentoring, growth coaches, skill-training workshops, and venture pitching.
Doing Everything Yourself Is Not Dedication—It’s Bad Leadership!
The Community for Entrepreneurs by Entrepreneurs
The Community for Entrepreneurs by Entrepreneurs
Here is a great insight form our partner Mike Dermer, the founder of The Lonely Entrepreneur.
Doing Everything Yourself Isn’t Dedication—It’s Bad Leadership!
Most entrepreneurs feel that they have to do everything. We feel that we are the only ones who know exactly how to get things done. This is a telltale sign of bad leadership. Of course you know more about your business than anyone. You live and breathe it. In the beginning, every activity probably could be done more effectively by you. You probably also feel that only you will provide the necessary attention to detail. This may all be true, especially in the early stages of your business. If you are lucky enough to have a team, you say to yourself, “It will take me much longer to teach someone to do this than to do it myself.” This starts with one issue, but then becomes the mantra for all issues which equals bad leadership.
“One of the most damaging perspectives you can have is believing there’s no one out there who can get the job done.”
One of the most damaging perspectives you can have is believing there’s no one out there who can get the job done. We know that in early stages of your company with limited resources you will get frustrated because things are not getting done to your standards. Here are the negative implications of that mindset:
You Stunt Growth. You become the bottleneck. It is impossible for a business to gain any momentum when everything waits for you. You see your passion, dedication and attention to detail as a huge plus. Others see it as detrimental to the growth of the business.
Employees, Investors and Customers Question Your Leadership. When sophisticated individuals hear “I’m the only one that can do this,” they question your ability to lead the company. At early stages of the business, many people you are interacting with are putting you in one of two buckets:
Passionate entrepreneur that can’t ultimately lead the business.
Entrepreneur that understands how businesses grow.
When you say, “I’m the only one that can do these things,” people put you in the first category. It is not that they don’t appreciate your passion—it is one of the reasons they want to work with your company. However, these individuals are getting involved with your business because of the potential for growth. When they hear this perspective, investors think, “How are we going to get someone that can run the business going forward?” Employees think, “We won’t grow if he needs to have his hand in everything.” Customers will not see your passion. They will see you as a single point of failure: “What happens if he gets hit by a bus? Does that mean I am left out in the cold?”
You Undermine Your Ability to Engage Employees. Senior employees will question whether your management style will give them the authority and accountability to execute, or will they be micromanaged instead. Senior employees don’t want to work in a company that looks like a “solar system”—where you are the sun and everything revolves around you. They want to join a team with a chain of command that allows them to naturally execute in their area of expertise.
Your Productivity Suffers. Junior employees will become less productive as they wait for you to weigh in. When you do weigh in, you will likely change what has been done. While an edit may be in order, returning their work with 99 percent of the content in your pen, is discouraging and invalidates both the employee and the mentorship process. If you don’t allow them to make mistakes and learn, they will never grow and improve.
Your Business Will Have Significant Risk. While early stage entrepreneurs are almost always indispensable, once you are fortunate enough to have customers, employees, and investors, you have to minimize this risk. What would happen to your employees if you got hit by a bus? What would happen to the money your family invested? What would happen to your investors? Would your customers continue to do business with your company? When everything revolves around you, you create risk for your constituents that they must weigh when doing business with your company. Would customers purchase an Apple product if they thought that when the world tragically lost Steve Jobs their products would no longer work?
When you do too much, you are setting your company up for failure.
Where do you turn for answers? Our Learning Community gives you a one-stop shop for answers. 150 learning modules organized into the 12 areas you need to know. We entrepreneurs can’t afford to waste time and money – and we help you learn in one place to help you avoid mistakes and drive success.
Will the original Liberty stand up please
Will the original Liberty stand up please
The importance of Trade Marks, Service Marks and Copyrights
The US Postal Service is paying millions of dollars for accidentally putting a fake Statue of Liberty on its stamp. $3.5 Million to be exact.
People don’t realize the impact of copyright infringements until it’s too late.
A sculptor who created a replica of the Statue of Liberty for a Las Vegas casino was awarded $3.5 million in damages last week after the US Postal Service (USPS) accidentally used a photo of his statue—rather than a photo of the original statue in New York harbor—on one of its most common stamps. The Post Office licensed a photo of Davidson’s statue from the image service Getty for $1,500, initially believing it was a photograph of the original statue. (The license only covered the rights to Getty’s photograph of the statue—not the statue itself.) If you bought a “forever” stamp between 2011 and 2014, there’s a good chance that it showed the face of the Statue of Liberty replica that sculptor Robert Davidson constructed for the New York-New York Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The court sides with Davidson and awarded him $3.55 M in total damages.
On this subject: Startups do not realize that the intellectual property you secure for your company is an investment for the future of your business, and it has to be done right to first time! We witnessed too many entrepreneurs trying to save a penny in the beginning by not applying for a trade/service mark, patent or registering for a copyright protection or applying themselves for the process (Blame the internet for the abundance of “free” legal advice and document templates, turning all into lawyers wannabe) and later to become dollar foolish just to correct the improperly filed documents or the lack of proper protection.
The question an entrepreneur needs to answer is: Do I pay twice for a half done job, or do I pay the right price for a professionally done job once? Since many startup founders are faced with tight budgets the key is to find the right legal service at the right price. At Startup Port we do not claim that we have the perfect answer/solution as there are millions of lawyers out there. But we stand behind the quality and expertise of the subject matter expert vetted service providers we work with. If you want to review your IP needs give us a try, we have a great ecosystem with access to knowledge, talent and skills that will save you time, money and headaches 
Here is one of the articles (from Quartz this time) about the USPS copyright fiasco! via @qz
One of our Chicago friend's startup raised $3.8 M!
We are Very happy for Mindi Knebel’s medical ride-sharing startup, Kaizen Health Inc., completing their $3.8 million Series A financing round in late May. Tremendous achievement from a Chicago Woman Entrepreneur! I am so honored to witness Mindi’s rise to success, from the days at MATTER Chicago (our local healthcare incubator) few years ago as their Program manager to running a multi-million dollar enterprise. Congratulation Mindi and many more successes. We need more and more Women Power in Chicago!
This Chicago company works with Lyft and Medical Transportation Management, another woman-lead firm, to streamline scheduling and transportation for non-emergency medical care including hospital discharges, clinical appointments and clinical trials.
Lewis & Clark Ventures of St. Louis lead the financing round and was represented by Helen Ciesielski who sits on Kaizen’s board. MTM which provides nonemergency medical transportation all over the country invested $500,000 in Kaizen earlier. MTM CEO Alaina Macia also is a board member at Kaizen. Other co-investors in the Series A round include Ekistic, Hyde Park Angels, Acumen and Impact Engine.
According to industry experts the Non Emergency Medial Transport ecosystem is a more than $3 billion industry.
Here is a peek at Kaizen Health presentation.
Kaizen Health - YouTube
Declaration of Independence
Declaration of Independence
Celebrated another Independence Day. Did we really?
The American spirit is rarely more visible than on Independence Day. Flags flying ​high ​with pride, carefree kids playing, picnics and parades, fireworks lighting up the sky … they all serve as a proud reminder of what our country stands for—life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness​, and equality for ALL.​
​On the other hand, it starts feeling like people have forgotten the importance of our Independence Proclamation.​ Lighting up few sparklers, igniting firecrackers, eating hot dogs and burgers and drinking ourselves silly is not a celebration of our independence.​ Caring for all, allowing the “liberty for all spirit” ​in being open minded to all types of views and beliefs, accepting all of us (not few, not partisan, but ALL inclusive) to be part of the American Spirit is what we need to do as a Nation. Most importantly we need to have deep “fidelity” to our nation, country, flag and what it all stands for. 
In case you care and believe in Freedom ​and Equality ​f​or​ all​, ​here is the link to the transcript to the most important document in the creation of this Nation:
We don't have the luxury of doing a "ctrl-alt-del" for time
We don't have the luxury of doing a "ctrl-alt-del" for time
We all have a “time management deficit”. It’s time to review your priorities.
For many of us this is the worst possible excuse one can give for failing to deliver something they promised. It is likely that the person you are saying this to is probably as busy as or busier than you.
If you find yourself using the “I’ve just been so busy” excuse it might be time to come up with a better approach, or better yet it is time to review your time management process! Constantly blaming how busy you are not to get back to them on time is not an excuse but a deficiency!
Stay busy but know how to manage your time!
To read the rest of this to to:
The place to turn for the right answers
The place to turn for the right answers
A Winning Startup Ecosystem
At Startup Port, we understand the role that your surroundings can play in the success of your ventures. We have gone out of our way to create an empowering startup ecosystem specially designed to offer our founders and entrepreneurs enhanced value at this critical early moment in their business.
There is No Need to Make This Journey Alone
Whether this is the first time or the 21st time you have launched a company, entrepreneurship is hard. It requires massive amounts of dedication to build something that truly gains traction and finds a core audience to support it.
It helps to have a supportive community behind you.
Do you want to find out more about the benefits of Startup Port? Contact us today!
If you like this newsletter, please share with a friend, a colleague or better yet a young entrepreneur. 
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