Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Start Up Dictionary / Glossary

A/B Split

1. A/B testing (also known as bucket testing or split-run testing) is a user experience research methodology. A/B tests consist of a randomized experiment with two variants, A and B. It includes application of statistical hypothesis testing or "two-sample hypothesis testing" as used in the field of statistics. A/B testing is a way to compare two versions of a single variable, typically by testing a subject's response to variant A against variant B and determining which of the two variants is more effective. - WeWork

2. The A-B split is a method of testing the effectiveness of marketing methods or media. Using A-B split marketing, a list of target names is split into two groups on a random basis, with one group designated as a control group and the other as a test or variation group. The objective of the A-B split is to determine which single variable is the most effective in improving response rates to a marketing campaign or achieving some other desired outcome. The A-B split is also referred to as "A/B testing," "bucket tests," or "split-run testing.” - Investopedia


An accelerator is a program intended to mentor and accelerate the growth and success of a startup company.

Accredited Investor

1. The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission ) defines an accredited investor as, “A natural person with income exceeding $200,000 in each of the two most recent years or joint income with spouse exceeding $300,000 for those years and a reasonable expectation of the same income level in the current year; or a natural person who has individual net worth, or joint net worth with the person’s spouse, that exceeds $1 million at the time of the purchase, excluding the value of the primary residence of such person.” In layman’s terms, it is a rich individual potentially interested in investing in your company. - Medium
2. An accredited investor is a person or entity who is allowed to deal, trade and invest in financial securities as long as they satisfy one (or more) requirements regarding income, net worth, asset size, governance status or professional experience. - Investopedia


1. An acquisition is defined as a corporate transaction where one company purchases a portion or all of another company’s shares or assets. Acquisitions are typically made in order to take control of, and build on, the target company’s strengths and capture synergies. There are several types of business combinations: acquisitions (both companies survive), mergers (one company survives), and amalgamations (neither company survives). - Tech Republic

2. An acquisition is when one company purchases most or all of another company's shares to gain control of that company. Purchasing more than 50% of a target firm's stock and other assets allows the acquirer to make decisions about the newly acquired assets without the approval of the company’s shareholders. Acquisitions, which are very common in business, may occur with the target company's approval, or in spite of its disapproval. With approval, there is often a no-shop clause during the process. – Investopedia


1. When a small, failing company is purchased solely for its staff. It’s kind of like acquiring the intellectual capital of a ready-made, talented crew. According to a CBInsights acqui-hire report, between 2012 and 2013, 60% of all Acqui-hired tech companies were internet companies and 38% were mobile. – We work

2. Acqui-hiring or Acq-hiring is a neologism which describes the process of acquiring a company          primarily to recruit its employees, rather than to gain control of its products or services. Ben Zimmer traced the derivation of the phrase to a blog post in May 2005.- Wikipedia


When one company buys controlling stake in another company. Can be friendly (agreed upon) or hostile (no agreement). – Tech Republic


1. Advertorials are paid content that is meant to look and feel like a true story or blog post. Companies are turning to these because display ad pricing has become less effective and viewers have become immune to them. - Medium

2. An advertorial is an advertisement in the form of editorial content. The term "advertorial" is a blend (see portmanteau) of the words "advertisement" and "editorial." Merriam-Webster dates the origin of the word to 1946. - Wikiipedia

Agile Project Management

1. Agile project management is an iterative approach to delivering a project throughout its life cycle. – APM

2. Agile project management does not follow a sequential stage-by-stage approach. Instead, phases of the project are completed in parallel to each other by various team members in an organization. This approach can find and rectify errors without having to restart the entire procedure. - Investopedia


1. This is a form of internal acceptance testing performed mainly by the in-house software QA and testing teams. Alpha testing is the last testing done by the test teams at the development site after the acceptance testing and before releasing the software for the beta test.- Software Testing

2. Alpha measures the amount that the investment has returned in comparison to the market index or other broad benchmark that it is compared against. - Investopedia

Angel Investor

1. An individual who invests his or her own money at an early stage in exchange for a share of the company. An angel can be a high net worth entrepreneur or friend or family member willing to invest in a great idea. Angel investors tend to invest fewer dollars than venture capitalists although some form angel groups to invest in bigger business opportunities – We Work

2. An angel investor (also known as a private investor, seed investor or angel funder) is a high net worth individual who provides financial backing for small start-ups or entrepreneurs, typically in exchange for ownership equity in the company. Often, angel investors are found among an entrepreneur's family and friends. The funds that angel investors provide may be a one-time investment to help the business get off the ground or an ongoing injection to support and carry the company through its difficult early stages. - Investopedia

Annual Recurring Revenue

Annual recurring revenue (ARR) refers to revenue, normalized on an annual basis, that a company expects to receive from its customers for providing them with products or services. Essentially, annual recurring revenue is a metric of predictable and recurring revenue generated by customers within a year. The measure is primarily used by businesses operating on a subscription-based model. - CFI

- Annual recurring revenue (ARR) is normalized on an annual basis revenue that a company expects to receive from its customers for providing them with products or services.
- Annual recurring revenue (ARR) is a metric for quantifying a company’s growth, evaluating its subscription model, and forecasting its revenue.
- Breaking down ARR into individual components (ARR added from new customers, ARR added from upgrades, etc.) enables tracking which customer segments contribute the most to the company’s revenue generation.

Anti Dilution

A term of an agreement that provides price protection for investors. This is accomplished by effectively repricing an investor’s shares to a lower price per share in the event that the company completes a financing at a lower valuation than a previous financing round.

API (Application Programming Interfaces)

1. An application programming interface (API) is a computing interface which defines interactions between multiple software intermediaries. It defines the kinds of calls or requests that can be made, how to make them, the data formats that should be used, the conventions to follow, etc. It can also provide extension mechanisms so that users can extend existing functionality in various ways and to varying degrees. An API can be entirely custom, specific to a component, or it can be designed based on an industry standard to ensure interoperability. Through information hiding, APIs enable modular programming, which allows users to use the interface independently of the implementation. - wikipedia

2. Application programming interfaces, or APIs, have become increasingly popular with the rise of automated trading systems. In the past, retail traders were forced to screen for opportunities in one application and separately place trades with their broker. Many retail brokers now provide APIs that enable traders to directly connect their screening software with the brokerage account to share real-time prices and place orders. Traders can even develop their own applications, using programming languages like Python, and execute trades using a broker's API. - Investopedia


1. Business to business. This describes a business that is targeting another business with its product or services. B2B technology is also sometimes referred to as enterprise technology. This is different from B2C which stands for business to consumer, and involves selling products or services directly to individual customers. – Tech Republic

2. Business-to-business (B2B), also called B-to-B, is a form of transaction between businesses, such as one involving a manufacturer and wholesaler, or a wholesaler and a retailer. Business-to-business refers to business that is conducted between companies, rather than between a company and individual consumer. Business-to-business stands in contrast to business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-government (B2G) transactions. - Investopedia


1. B2C means you offer your products or services to other consumers (Business To Consumer). - Medium 

2. The term business-to-consumer (B2C) refers to the process of selling products   and services directly between a business and consumers who are the end-users of its products or services.   Most companies that sell directly to consumers can be referred to as B2C companies. - Investopedia

Back End Plan

1. A back-end plan refers to an anti-takeover measure that investors use when trading their existing shares in the market. This strategy allows existing shareholders to exchange their existing securities for either cash or other securities at a value decided upon by the board of directors of the target company.- AZ Central

2. A back-end plan is an anti-acquisition strategy in which the target company provides existing shareholders, with the exception of the company attempting the takeover, with the ability to exchange existing securities for cash or other securities valued at a price determined by the company’s board of directors. A back-end plan, also known as a note purchase rights plan, is a type of poison pill defence. Poison pill defences are used by companies to prevent a hostile takeover by an outside company.- Investopedia


1. The process by which a startup company measures their current success. An investor measures a company's growth by determining whether or not they have met certain benchmarks. For example, company A has met the benchmark of having X amount of recurring revenue after 2 years in the market. – Tech Republic

2. Benchmarking is the practice of comparing business processes and performance metrics to industry bests and best practices from other companies. Dimensions typically measured are quality, time and cost. - Investopedia

Beneficial Owner

A beneficial owner is a person who enjoys the benefits of ownership even though the title to some form of property is in another name.

It also means any individual or group of individuals who, either directly or indirectly, has the power to vote or influence the transaction decisions regarding a specific security, such as shares in a company. - Investopedia


1. This is a testing stage followed by the internal full alpha test cycle. This is the final testing phase where the companies release the software to a few external user groups outside the company test teams or employees. This initial software version is known as the beta version. Most companies gather user feedback in this release. – Software Testing

2. Beta measures the volatility of an investment. It is an indication of its relative risk.- Investopedia

Big Data

Big data refers to the large, diverse sets of information that grow at ever-increasing rates. It encompasses the volume of information, the velocity or speed at which it is created and collected, and the variety or scope of the data points being covered. Big data often comes from multiple sources and arrives in multiple formats. - Investopedia

BM - Business Model

1. A business model describes the rationale of how an organization creates, delivers, and captures value, in economic, social, cultural or other contexts. The process of business model construction and modification is also called business model innovation and forms a part of business strategy. - Wikipedia

2. The term business model refers to a company's plan for making a profit. It identifies the products or services the business plans to sell, its identified target market, and any anticipated expenses. Business models are important for both new and established businesses. They help new, developing companies attract investment, recruit talent, and motivate management and staff. Established businesses should regularly update their business plans or they'll fail to anticipate trends and challenges ahead. Business plans help investors evaluate companies that interest them. - Investopedia

BOD - Board of Directors

1. A group of influential individuals, elected by stockholders, chosen to oversee the affairs of a company. A board typically includes investors and mentors. Not all startups have a board, but investors typically require a board seat in exchange for an investment in a company. – Tech Republic

2. An independent outside director is a member of a company's board of directors (BoD) that the company brought in from outside (as opposed to an inside director chosen from within the organization). - Wikipedia


1. Bootstrapping usually refers to a self-starting process that is supposed to proceed without external input. In computer technology the term (usually shortened to booting) usually refers to the process of loading the basic software into the memory of a computer after power-on or general reset, especially the operating system which will then take care of loading other software as needed. - Wikipedia

2. Bootstrapping is building a company from the ground up with nothing but personal savings, and with luck, the cash coming in from the first sales. The term is also used as a noun: A bootstrap is a business an entrepreneur with little or no outside cash or other support launches. - Investopedia

Bridge Loan

1. Also known as a swing loan. Short-term loan to bridge the gap between major financing – Tech Republic

2. A bridge loan is a short-term loan used until a person or company secures permanent financing or removes an existing obligation. It allows the user to meet current obligations by providing immediate cash flow. Bridge loans are short term, up to one year, have relatively high interest rates, and are usually backed by some form of collateral, such as real estate or inventory.- Investopedia


1. A bubble describes a moment in an economic cycle where an industry or company does not realize that it might be overvalued and over-inflated. When a “tech bubble” bursts, it means that a lot of startups go bust and investors lose their money.- Medium

2. Bubble theory is an informal financial hypothesis that presumes the possibility of rapidly rising prices as investors begin buying beyond what may seem like rational prices. The hypothesis include the idea that the rapid rise in market prices will be followed by a sudden crash as investors move out of overvalued assets with little or no clear indicators for the timing of the event. - Investopedia

Burn Rate

1. The amount of cash you are spending each month in relation to your capital. Divide your capital amount by your burn rate to determine the lifespan of your company (at least until the next funding round) - We Work  

2. The burn rate is typically used to describe the rate at which a new company is spending its venture capital to finance overhead before generating positive cash flow from operations. It is a measure of negative cash flow. - Investopedia


1. A common exit strategy. The purchase of a company's shares that gives the purchaser controlling interest in the company.- Tech Republic

2. A buyout is the acquisition of a controlling interest in a company and is used synonymously with the term acquisition. If the stake is bought by the firm’s management, it is known as a management buyout and if high levels of debt are used to fund the buyout, it is called a leveraged buyout. Buyouts often occur when a company is going private.- Investopedia


1. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is the cost of winning a customer to purchase a product/service. As an important unit economic, customer acquisition costs are often related to customer lifetime value (CLV or LTV). - Wikipedia

2. The cost of acquisition is the total expense incurred by a business in acquiring a new client or purchasing an asset. An accountant will list a company's cost of acquisition as the total after any discounts are added and any closing costs are deducted. However, any sales tax paid is not included in this line item. - Investopedia

Cap Table

1. A capitalization table (or cap table) is a table providing an analysis of a company's percentages of ownership, equity dilution, and value of equity in each round of investment by founders, investors, and other owners.- Wikipedia

2. A capitalization table, also known as a cap table, is a spreadsheet or table that shows the equity capitalization for a company. A capitalization table is most commonly utilized for startups and early-stage businesses but all types of companies may use it as well. In general, the capitalization table is an intricate breakdown of a company’s shareholders’ equity. – Investopedia

Capital Under Management

1. The amount of capital, or financial assets, that a venture capital firm is currently managing and investing. – Tech Republic

2. Capital under management (CUM) is the total market value of the investments that a person or entity manages on behalf of clients. Assets under management definitions and formulas vary by company. - Investopedia

Capped notes

1. Refers to a "cap" placed on investor notes in a round of financing. Entrepreneurs and investors agree to place a cap on the valuation of the company where notes turn to equity. This means investors will own a certain percentage of a company relative to that cap when the company raises another round of funding. Uncapped rounds are generally more favourable to an entrepreneur/startup – Tech Republic

2. A floating rate note with an agreed upper limit coupon rate on it. For example, an investor may be promised a LIBOR coupon of 125 basis points over a three-month LIBOR. - Investopedia

Cash Flow Positive

1. Cash flow positive is accountant speak meaning that more money is coming in than going out. When you deduct your expenses from your earnings, you have a positive amount in your bank account. Staying in the black, especially when you are self-funded is the name of the game! - Medium 

2. Positive cash flow indicates that a company's liquid assets are increasing, enabling it to settle debts, reinvest in its business, return money to shareholders, pay expenses and provide a buffer against future financial challenges. Companies with strong financial flexibility can take advantage of profitable investments. They also fare better in downturns, by avoiding the costs of financial distress. – Investopedia

Churn Rate

1. Churn rate (sometimes called attrition rate), in its broadest sense, is a measure of the number of individuals or items moving out of a collective group over a specific period. It is one of two primary factors that determine the steady-state level of customers a business will support. - Wikipedia

2. The churn rate, also known as the rate of attrition or customer churn, is the rate at which customers stop doing business with an entity. It is most commonly expressed as the percentage of service subscribers who discontinue their subscriptions within a given time period. It is also the rate at which employees leave their jobs within a certain period. For a company to expand its clientele, its growth rate (measured by the number of new customers) must exceed its churn rate- Investopedia.

Cliff Vesting

1. Cliff Vesting is a process where employees are entitled to the full benefits from their firm’s qualified retirement plans and pension policies on a given date, as opposed to retirement plans where the employee’s ownership of the funds vests gradually. In most cases, there is usually a four-year vesting schedule plan with a one-year cliff. Upon completing the cliff period, the employee receives full benefits, compared to a vesting schedule plan where the amount is released over a scheduled period. - CFI

2. Companies often give their employees equity as part of their overall compensation package. Equity represents partial ownership of the company, and offering ownership is a way to incentivize employees—to encourage them to stay and to perform well. However, a company is unlikely to give an employee stock until they have earned it. And that takes time. - Investopedia

CLV - Customer Lifetime Value

The lifetime value of a customer, or customer lifetime value (CLV), represents the total amount of money a customer is expected to spend in your business, or on your products, during their lifetime. This is an important figure to know because it helps you make decisions about how much money to invest in acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones. - Shopify


1. If a founder sets up a company with other people, they are both a founder and a co-founder. So Larry Page is not only Google’s founder, but also a co-founder with Sergey Brin. Co-founder is a term that exists to give equal credit to multiple people who start a business together.

2. A co-founder may be part of the vision of a startup from the get-go, or they may be brought on very early by the original founder because they have skills the founder is lacking. For example, the founder may have design skills, but no engineering skills. In that case, it greatly benefits them to bring on a technical co-founder early in the process of launching their startup. – Startups.com

Common Stock

Common stock is a security that represents ownership in a corporation. Holders of common stock elect the board of directors and vote on corporate policies. This form of equity ownership typically yields higher rates of return long term. However, in the event of liquidation, common shareholders have rights to a company's assets only after bondholders, preferred shareholders, and other debt holders are paid in full. Common stock is reported in the stockholder's equity section of a company's balance sheet.

Convertible Debt

1. This is when a company borrows money with the intent that the debt accrued will later be converted to equity in the company at a later valuation. This allows companies to delay valuation while raising funding in it's early stages. This is typically done in the early stages of a company's life, when a valuation is more difficult to complete and investing carries higher risk. – Tech Republic 

2. A convertible bond is a fixed-income corporate debt security that yields interest payments, but can be converted into a predetermined number of common stock or equity shares. The conversion from the bond to stock can be done at certain times during the bond's life and is usually at the discretion of the bondholder. - Investopedia

Convertible Note

1. A note is worth a percentage of equity ownership in a company. Some business owners use convertible notes if they want to attract angel investors without having to put a valuation on the company. The note turns into equity as soon as another investor comes in. – We work

2. A convertible bond or convertible note or convertible debt (or a convertible debenture if it has a maturity of greater than 10 years) is a type of bond that the holder can convert into a specified number of shares of common stock in the issuing company or cash of equal value. It is a hybrid security with debt- and equity-like features. It originated in the mid-19th century, and was used by early speculators such as Jacob Little and Daniel Drew to counter market cornering. - Investopedia


1. Usually used in the creative industry, copyrights protect your music, art and film. It allows the creator to have exclusive rights for its use and distribution. - Medium

2. Copyright is a type of intellectual property that gives its owner the exclusive right to make copies of a creative work, usually for a limited time - Investopedia


1. Crowdsourcing is getting information for free from people on the internet or using a survey. - Medium

2. Crowdsourcing involves obtaining work, information, or opinions from a large group of people who submit their data via the Internet, social media, and smartphone apps. People involved in crowdsourcing sometimes work as paid freelancers, while others perform small tasks on a voluntary basis. For example, traffic apps encourage drivers to report accidents and other roadway incidents to provide real-time updated information to app users. - Investopedia

Debt Financing

1. This is when a company raises money by selling bond, bills, or notes to an investor with the promise that the debt will be repaid with interest. It is typically performed by late-stage companies – Tech Republic

2. Debt financing occurs when a firm raises money for working capital or capital expenditures by selling debt instruments to individuals and/or institutional investors. In return for lending the money, the individuals or institutions become creditors and receive a promise that the principal and interest on the debt will be repaid. The other way to raise capital in the debt markets is to issue shares of stock in a public offering; this is called equity financing. - Investopedia


A Decacorn is a company valued at over $10 billion. The top ten Decacorn Companies as of January 2019, comprise Bytedance, Uber, Didi Chuxing, WeWork, Lu.com, Airbnb, SpaceX, Palantir Technologies, Stripe and JUUL Labs. - Investopedia


A deck is a presentation that covers all aspects of your business in a succinct and exciting way. If you ever need inspiration for a good deck, check out how Elon Musk uses his to demonstrate the TESLA Powerwall - Medium


Demographic is an expression that is frequently used in marketing to describe the age, gender, income, schooling and occupation of your ideal customers. - Medium
Digital Nomad

1. A digital nomad is typically a web or app developer who travels the world while coding. There are forecasted to be $1 billion digital nomads by 2035 – Medium

2. Digital nomads are people who are location-independent and use technology to perform their job. Digital nomads work remotely, telecommuting rather than being physically present at a company's headquarters or office. The digital nomad lifestyle has been made possible through a number of innovations, including content management software, cheap Internet access through WiFi, smartphones, and Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) to keep in contact with clients and employers.. - Investopedia


Dilution (also known as stock or equity dilution) occurs when a company issues new stock which results in a decrease of an existing stockholder's ownership percentage of that company. Stock dilution can also occur when holders of stock options, such as company employees, or holders of other optionable securities exercise their options. When the number of shares outstanding increases, each existing stockholder owns a smaller, or diluted, percentage of the company, making each share less valuable. - Investopedia

Discounted Cash Flows (DCF)

Discounted cash flow (DCF) is a valuation method used to estimate the value of an investment based on its future cash flows. DCF analysis attempts to figure out the value of an investment today, based on projections of how much money it will generate in the future. This applies to both financial investments for investors and for business owners looking to make changes to their businesses, such as purchasing new equipment. – Investopedia


1. “The selling of a cheaper, poorer-quality product that initially reaches less profitable customers but eventually takes over and devours an entire industry,” from 1997’s The Innovator’s Dilemma, by Clayton M. Christensen. Disruptive has since become a way to describe a product or technology that will change its marketplace.- We Work 
2. A market disruption is a situation wherein markets cease to function in a regular manner, typically characterized by rapid and large market declines. Market disruptions can result from both physical threats to the stock exchange or unusual trading (as in a crash). In either case, the disruption creates widespread panic and results in disorderly market conditions.- Investopedia

Disruptive technology

1. Disruptive technology is any tech that takes an industry, forces consumers to think differently and then adopt that technology as the new norm. Examples include Uber, Lyft, Airbnb and JetSmarter - Medium

2. Disruptive technology is an innovation that significantly alters the way that consumers, industries, or businesses operate. A disruptive technology sweeps away the systems or habits it replaces because it has attributes that are recognizably superior.- Investopedia


1. Dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where a store doesn’t keep the products it sells in stock. Instead, when a store sells a product using the dropshipping model, it purchases the item from a third party and has it shipped directly to the customer. As a result, the seller doesn’t have to handle the product directly.

2. The biggest difference between dropshipping and the standard retail model is that the selling merchant doesn’t stock or own inventory. Instead, the seller purchases inventory as needed from a third party—usually a wholesaler or manufacturer—to fulfill orders. – Shopify

Due Diligence

1. An analysis an investor makes of all the facts and figures of a potential investment. Can include an investigation of financial records and a measure of potential ROI.- Tech Republic

2. Due diligence is an investigation, audit, or review performed to confirm the facts of a matter under consideration. In the financial world, due diligence requires an examination of financial records before entering into a proposed transaction with another party - Investopedia

Early Adopters

1. Early adopters are the first users of your product. They will typically be key influencers and active on social media. They will give you your most honest and sometimes overly direct feedback. If you can identify these people effectively and have them interacting with your startup from an early stage, you can get lots of free exposure.- Medium

2. An early adopter (sometimes misspelled as early adapter or early adaptor) or lighthouse customer is an early customer of a given company, product, or technology. - Wikipedia

EBIT - Earning Before Interest & Taxes

Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) is an indicator of a company's profitability. EBIT can be calculated as revenue minus expenses excluding tax and interest. EBIT is also referred to as operating earnings, operating profit, and profit before interest and taxes. - Investopedia


Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization, is a measure of a company's overall financial performance and is used as an alternative to net income in some circumstances. – Investopedia


Ecommerce, also known as electronic commerce or internet commerce, refers to the buying and selling of goods or services using the internet, and the transfer of money and data to execute these transactions. - Shopify

EIR - Entrepreneur in Residence

1. A seasoned entrepreneur who is employed by a Venture Capital Firm to help the firm vet potential investments and mentor the firm's portfolio companies – Tech Republic

2. An Entrepreneur in residence, or Executive in residence (EIR), is a position most often held by successful entrepreneurs in venture capital firms, private equity firms, startup accelerators, law firms or business schools. - Wikipedia

Equity Crowdfunding

1. Equity crowdfunding is just like regular crowdfunding but instead of getting money in return for a fee, you pay a fee to the crowdfunding site and a % of the company to investors. – Medium

2. Equity crowdfunding is the online offering of private company securities to a group of people for investment and therefore it is a part of the capital markets. Because equity crowdfunding involves investment into a commercial enterprise, it is often subject to securities and financial regulation. Equity crowdfunding is also referred to as crowd-investing, investment crowdfunding, or crowd equity - Wikipedia

Equity Financing

1. The act of raising capital by selling off shares of a company. An IPO is technically a form of equity financing.- Tech Republic

2. Equity financing is the process of raising capital through the sale of shares. Companies raise money because they might have a short-term need to pay bills or they might have a long-term goal and require funds to invest in their growth. By selling shares, they sell ownership in their company in return for cash, like stock financing. - Investopedia

Exit Strategy

1. The way you envision getting money out of your company. It’s another way of thinking about your future plans for the company. Either you want to sell it, get acquired (or acqui-hire), merge with another company, go public, or liquidate the business completely. Having this answer now will keep you a step ahead. – We work 

2. An exit strategy is a contingency plan that is executed by an investor, trader, venture capitalist, or business owner to liquidate a position in a financial asset or dispose of tangible business assets once predetermined criteria for either has been met or exceeded. - Investopedia


Financial technology (Fintech) is used to describe new tech that seeks to improve and automate the delivery and use of financial services. At its core, fintech is utilized to help companies, business owners and consumers better manage their financial operations, processes, and lives by utilizing specialized software and algorithms that are used on computers and, increasingly, smartphones. Fintech, the word, is a combination of "financial technology". – Investopedia

FMA - First Mover Advantage

1. The first to market is not always the first to capitalize on the industry. One reason for this is that it can cost a fortune to educate potential users or customers. That said, if you are a company like Disney, you lead and by innovating you stay ahead of the pack. This is called first mover advantage. - Medium

2. First-mover advantage (FMA) is the advantage gained by the initial ("first-moving") significant occupant of a market segment. First-mover advantage may be gained by technological leadership, or early purchase of resources. - Investopedia


A founder is a person who comes up with an idea and then transforms it into a business or startup. Founders can set up a business on their own, or they can do it with others. For example, Larry Page is a founder of Google. – Startups.com


1. A freemium approach is when give your basic product away for free and then try to upsell other features to your customers. It is a common and proven technique to acquire more users. – Medium

2. A combination of the words "free" and "premium," the term freemium is a type of business model that involves offering customers both complementary and extra-cost services. A company provides simple and basic services for free for the user to try; it also offers more advanced services or additional features at a premium - Wikipedia     

Front End Load

A front-end load is a commission or sales charge applied at the time of the initial purchase of an investment. The term most often applies to mutual fund investments, but may also apply to insurance policies or annuities. The front-end load is deducted from the initial deposit, or purchase funds and, as a result, lowers the amount of money actually going into the investment product. – Investopedia

Fund of Funds

1. A mutual fund that invests in other mutual funds.- Tech Republic
2. A fund of funds (FOF)—also known as a multi-manager investment—is a pooled investment fund that invests in other types of funds. In other words, its portfolio contains different underlying portfolios of other funds. These holdings replace any investing directly in bonds, stocks, and other types of securities. – Investopedia


1. If you gamify something, you add a game layer to your product that encourages people to use it with rewards of various kinds. See Foursquare and how they used virtual badges and the “Mayor” badge to encourage people to use their app.- Medium

2. Gamification describes the incentivisation of people's engagement in non-game contexts and activities by using game-style mechanics. Gamification leverages people's natural tendencies for competition, achievement, collaboration, and charity. Tools employed in game design, such as rewarding users for achievements, "leveling-up," and earning badges, are carried into the real world to help motivate individuals to achieve their goals or boost performance. There are many examples of gamification, the most well-known perhaps being frequent flyer rewards programs offered by airlines. The important measurable metrics of success from gamification include the level of engagement, influence, brand loyalty, time spent on an activity, and the game's ability to go viral. – Investopedia

Going Public

1. A company’s IPO, or initial public offering. Think of it as just another way to raise funding. You are offering shares of your company for purchase to the public. It could make you rich but it could also cost a lot. IPO deals are structured by investment banks, and your company is valued by analysts. There are pros and cons to going public and only a small percentage of millions of U.S. companies actually do it. Investment in IPOs can be risky but can pay off big for some investors. – We Work

2. Going public refers to a private company's initial public offering (IPO), thus becoming a publicly-traded and owned entity. Businesses usually go public to raise capital in hopes of expanding. Additionally, venture capitalists may use IPOs as an exit strategy (a way of getting out of their investment - Investopedia    

Growth Hacking

1. Growth Hacking was a term first used by Sean Ellis (Dropbox) to describe a marketing technique that focuses on quickly finding scalable growth through non-traditional and inexpensive tactics such as the use of social media. Other companies that have effectively used this technique are Airbnb and Foundr. – Medium

2. Growth hacking is a relatively new field in marketing focused on growth. It started in relation to early-stage startups who need massive growth in a short time on small budgets, but has since then also reached bigger corporate companies. – Investopedia

Hockey Stick

1. Hockey stick growth is used to define a growth pattern that a company experiences which starts on a linear trajectory, and then once a certain point is hit, growth takes off astronomically. When charted on a graph, the image looks like a hockey stick. – Digital Astronauts

2. A hockey stick chart is a line chart in which a sharp increase occurs suddenly after a short period of quiescence. The line connecting the data points resembles a hockey stick. Hockey stick charts have been used in the world of business and as a visual to show dramatic shifts, such as global temperatures and poverty statistics. – Investopedia

Inbound Cash Flow

1. Currency received by a company or an individual from participating in a transaction with another party or entity. This cash flow may be in the form of sales revenue from sales or services performed, amounts won in a legal proceeding, or refunds that are received from suppliers. – Business dictionary

2. Inbound cash flow is any currency that a company or individual receives through conducting a transaction with another party. Inbound cash flow can include sales revenue generated through business operations, refunds received from suppliers, financing transactions and amounts awarded as a result of legal proceedings. Lack of inbound cash flow can stunt growth, force a company to use costly lines of credit and even cause operational issues. – Investopedia


1. Startup incubators are groups that support chosen entrepreneurs and/or their    businesses with mentorship and funding. In exchange, the incubator takes an equity stake in the company. Increasingly popular and competitive in the tech world, incubators have been touted as the new business schools – We Work 
2. A business incubator is a company that helps new and startup companies to develop by providing services such as management training or office space.[1] The National Business Incubation Association (NBIA) defines business incubators as a catalyst tool for either regional or national economic development. NBIA categorizes their members' incubators by the following five incubator types: academic institutions; non-profit development corporations; for-profit property development ventures; venture capital firms, and combination of the above – Wikipedia


A legal term that means one party agrees to compensate another party for loss or damage that has already occurred, or guarantees, through a contractual agreement, to repay another party for loss or damage that occurs in the future. Indemnification clauses are common in corporations and LLCs: often a company will agree to indemnify its shareholders, members, officers and Directors for actions they take in such roles on behalf of the company.

IP - Intellectual Property

1. Intellectual property covers patents, trademarks and copyrights. It is a good way to protect your “secret sauce” – Medium

2. Intellectual property (IP) is a category of property that includes intangible creations of the human intellect.[1][2] There are many types of intellectual property, and some countries recognize more than others – Wikipedia

IPO - Initial Public Offering

1. Initial public offering. The first time shares of stock in a company are offered on a  securities exchange or to the general public. At this point, a private company turns into a public company (and is no longer a startup). – Tech Republic

2. An initial public offering (IPO) refers to the process of offering shares of a private corporation to the public in a new stock issuance. Public share issuance allows a company to raise capital from public investors. The transition from a private to a public company can be an important time for private investors to fully realize gains from their investment as it typically includes share premiums for current private investors. Meanwhile, it also allows public investors to participate in the offering. – Investopedia


1. Iterate means to try something, refine it, try again and keep trying using small steps until successful. – Medium

2. Iteration is the repetition of a process in order to generate a (possibly unbounded) sequence of outcomes. The sequence will approach some end point or end value. Each repetition of the process is a single iteration, and the outcome of each iteration is then the starting point of the next iteration. – Wikipedia

KPI - Key Performance Indicator

1. A performance indicator or key performance indicator (KPI) is a type of performance measurement.KPIs evaluate the success of an organization or of a particular activity (such as projects, programs, products and other initiatives) in which it engages – Wikipedia

2. Key performance indicators (KPIs) refer to a set of quantifiable measurements used to gauge a company’s overall long-term performance. KPIs specifically help determine a company's strategic, financial, and operational achievements, especially compared to those of other businesses within the same sector – Investopedia


A launch is a when you start a company, website or app. It is the euphoric moment when you feel that the blood, sweat and tears was worth it. Companies can either have a “soft launch” (minimal press exposure and staying in beta) or celebrate with a “launch party” which can be at major startup events like CES or a Startup Week – Medium
Lead Investor

Partner or investor with the largest share of capital in a syndicated financing arrangement. A lead investor is usually the initiating venture capitalist who takes charge of the deal, and who may also act on behalf of the other investors. – Business Dictionary

1. Lean startup is a methodology for developing businesses and products that aims to shorten product development cycles and rapidly discover if a proposed business model is viable; this is achieved by adopting a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning. – Wikipedia

2. The term "lean enterprise" refers to a production principle stating that any component of a business enterprise that fails to directly benefit a final product is superfluous. Lean enterprise focuses on value creation while eliminating waste and non-essential processes. The most valuable elements of a product or a service are largely decided by consumers, based on the discretionary income they are willing to pay for an item. – Investopedia

Licensing Agreement

A licensing agreement is a legal contract between two parties, known as the licensor and the licensee. In a typical licensing agreement, the licensor grants the licensee the right to produce and sell goods, apply a brand name or trademark, or use patented technology owned by the licensor.


1. The process of dissolving a company by selling off all of its assets (making them liquid).- Tech Republic

2. Liquidation in finance and economics is the process of bringing a business to an end and distributing its assets to claimants. It is an event that usually occurs when a company is insolvent, meaning it cannot pay its obligations when they are due - Investopedia

LTV - Loan to Value

1. The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is a financial term used by lenders to express the ratio of a loan to the value of an asset purchased. The term is commonly used by banks and building societies to represent the ratio of the first mortgage line as a percentage of the total appraised value of real property. - Wikipedia

2. The loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is an assessment of lending risk that financial institutions and other lenders examine before approving a mortgage. Typically, loan assessments with high LTV ratios are considered higher risk loans. Therefore, if the mortgage is approved, the loan has a higher interest rate.- Investopedia

Market Sizing

Market Sizing is the process of estimating the potential of a market. Understanding the potential of a market is important for companies looking to launch a new product or service. Using a wide variety of secondary market research sources and databases, we synthesize results from previously published research and other data sources to help define: - Optimization blog

The total size (or potential size) of a market
The major competitors in a market by category
The composition and profile of a target customer
The products/services available in the market
The most significant trends in the market

Media Kit

1. A media kit is a public relations tool for influencers, brands, and organizations to raise awareness, explain services and provide essential information for prospective partners. – Learning Hub

2. A media kit is a package of information, assembled by a company, to provide basic information about itself to reporters. The media kit is a promotional public relations tool that can serve several functions, including promoting the launch of a new company, promoting the launch of a new product or service by an existing company, giving a company a way to present itself as it would like to be seen, and/or saving time, by eliminating the need for a company's employees to repeatedly answer the same questions. – Investopedia

Merchant Banker

A merchant bank is a company that conducts underwriting, loan services, financial advising and fundraising services for large corporations and high net worth individuals. Unlike retail or Commercial banks, merchant banks do not provide services to the general public. They do not provide regular banking services like checking accounts and do not take deposits.

These banks are experts in international trade, which makes them specialists in dealing with multinational corporations. Some of the largest merchant banks in the world include J.P. Morgan, Goldman Sachs, and Citigroup - Investopedia

Mezzanine Financing

1. Mezzanine financing is a hybrid of debt and equity financing that gives the lender the right to convert to an equity interest in the company in case of default, generally, after venture capital companies and other senior lenders are paid.- Investopedia

2. A form of hybrid capital typically used to fund adolescent and mature cash flow positive companies. It is a form of debt financing, but it also includes embedded equity instruments or options. Companies at this level, which are no longer considered startups but have yet to go public, are typically referred to as "mezzanine level" companies.- Tech Republic

NDA - Non Disclosure Agreement

1. Non-disclosure agreement. An agreement between two parties to protect sensitive or confidential information, such as trade secrets, from being shared with outside parties – Tech Republic

2. A non-disclosure agreement is a legally binding contract that establishes a confidential relationship. The party or parties signing the agreement agree that sensitive information they may obtain will not be made available to any others. – Investopedia


A neobank is a kind of digital bank without any branches. Rather than being physically present at a specific location, neobanking is entirely online.
It’s a wide umbrella of financial service providers who beseech today’s tech-savvy customers. Neobanks can be called fintech firms that provide digital and mobile-first financial solutions payments and money transfers, money lending, and more.
Neobanks don’t have a bank license of their own but count on bank partners to provide bank licensed services. - Razorpay

Nodal Account

Nodal account is a special bank account required to be opened by businesses (intermediaries) holding money on behalf of vendors and customers. A nodal account ensures that money does not legally belong to the intermediary, at any point in time.

The rapid evolution of the digital age has paved the way for new and complex business models. These include a marketplace, payment gateway providers, aggregators, etc., that connect consumers to the vendors and hold money on their behalf.

These intermediaries hold a certain commission. After that, disburse the rest to entities such as vendors and logistic partners.

Few real-world examples on intermediaries are Udacity and Lybrate – Cashfree blog

Open Source

1. Open source products include permission to use the source code, design documents,or content of the product. It most commonly refers to the open-source model, in which open-source software or other products are released under an open-source license as part of the open-source-software movement. Use of the term originated with software, but has expanded beyond the software sector to cover other open content and forms of open collaboration. – Wikipedia

2. Open source refers to a software program or platform with source code that is readily accessible and which can be modified or enhanced by anyone. Open source access grants users of an application permission to fix broken links, enhance the design, or improve the original code.- Investopedia

Outbound Cash Flow

1. An outbound cash flow occurs whenever you are required to pay money. The opposite of an outbound cash flow is an inbound one. For example, when a company issues bonds to raise funds, they receive an initial inbound cash flow. However, when they are required to service this debt by paying coupons on the bonds, they company will experience an outbound cash flow. – Accounting tools

2. Outbound cash flow is any money a company or individual must pay out when conducting a transaction with another party. Outbound cash flows can include cash paid to suppliers, wages given to employees and taxes paid on income. – Investopedia

Phantom Shares

A phantom stock plan is an employee benefit plan that gives selected employees (senior management) many of the benefits of stock ownership without actually giving them any company stock. This type of plan is sometimes referred to as shadow stock. - Investopedia

Pitch Deck

1. A pitch deck is a brief presentation, often created using PowerPoint, Keynote or Prezi, used to provide your audience with a quick overview of your business plan. You will usually use your pitch deck during face-to-face or online meetings with potential investors, customers, partners, and co-founders. – Improve Presentation

2. A pitchbook is a sales document created by an investment bank or firm that details the main attributes of the firm, which is then used by the firm's sales force to help sell products and services and generate new clients. Pitchbooks are helpful guides for the sales force to remember important benefits and to provide visual aids when presenting to clients. – Investopedia

Portfolio Company

1. A company that a specific Venture Capital firm has invested in is considered a "portfolio company" of that firm – Tech Republic

2. A portfolio company is a company or entity in which a venture capital firm, a buyout firm, or a holding company invests. All companies currently backed by a private equity firm can be spoken of as the firm’s portfolio- Investopedia

Post-Money Valuation

1. Post-money valuation is the value for the company plus the funding. Again, sounds simple, but how you value your company compared to the size of the investment can quickly dilute your shares. Valuation happens at every round or stage of funding.- We work

2. Post-money refers to how much the company is worth after it receives the money and investments into it. Post-money valuation includes outside financing or the latest capital injection. It is important to know which is being referred to, as they are critical concepts in the valuation of any company. – Investopedia

Preferred Stock

1. A stock that carries a fixed dividend that is to be paid out before dividends carried by common stock. – Tech Republic

2. The term "stock" refers to ownership or equity in a firm. There are two types of equity - common stock  and preferred stock. Preferred stockholders have a higher claim to dividends or asset distribution than common stockholders. The details of each preferred stock depend on the issue. – Investopedia

Pre-Money Valuation

1. How much your company is worth. But that’s putting it simply. There are several different formulas for determining the valuation of your company when you plan to sell shares. Pre-money valuation is how much a startup company is worth before funding. – We work 

2. Pre-money valuation refers to the value of a company not including external funding or the latest round of funding. Pre-money is best described as how much a startup might be worth before it begins to receive any investments into the company. This valuation doesn't just give investors an idea of the current value of the business, but it also provides the value of each issued share. – Investopedia

Product Life Cycle

Product life cycle is the progression of an item through the four stages of its time on the market. The four life cycle stages are: Introduction, Growth, Maturity and Decline. Every product has a life cycle and time spent at each stage differs from product to product. – Shopify

Proof of concept

1. A demonstration of the feasibility of a concept or idea that a startup is based on. Many VCs require proof of concept if you wish to pitch to them – Tech Republic

2. Proof of concept or proof of principle is a realization of a certain method or idea in order to demonstrate its feasibility,or a demonstration in principle with the aim of verifying that some concept or theory has practical potential.A proof of concept is usually small and may or may not be complete.- Investopedia


1. A corporate reorganization of a company's capital structure, changing the mix of equity and debt. A company will usually recapitalize to prepare for an exit, lower taxes, or defend against a takeover- Tech Republic

2. Recapitalization is the process of restructuring a company's debt and equity mixture, often to make a company's capital structure more stable. – Investopedia

ROI - Return on Investment

1. This is the much-talked-about "return on investment." It's the money an investor gets back as a percentage of the money he or she has invested in a venture. For example, if a VC invests $2 million for a 20 percent share in a company and that company is bought out for $40 million, the VC's return is $8 million – Tech Republic

2. Return on Investment (ROI) is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or compare the efficiency of a number of different investments. ROI tries to directly measure the amount of return on a particular investment, relative to the investment’s cost. To calculate ROI, the benefit (or return) of an investment is divided by the cost of the investment. The result is expressed as a percentage or a ratio. – Investopedia


1. Startups raise capital from VC firms in individual rounds, depending on the stage of the company. The first round is usually a Seed round followed by Series A, B, and C rounds if necessary. In rare cases rounds can go as far as Series F, as was the case with Box.net. – Tech Republic

2. The term A round financing refers to funding that a startup or other young private company receives from private equity investors or venture capitalists. New companies raise funds in a series of stages. The A round is normally the second stage of financing that a company receives, and is also the first major funding round in the venture capital stage. In many cases, investors who provide A round financing typically receive convertible preferred stock. – Investopedia

Run Rate

1. The run rate concept refers to the extrapolation of financial results into future periods – Accounting tools

2. The run rate refers to the financial performance of a company based on using current financial information as a predictor of future performance. The run rate functions as an extrapolation of current financial performance and assumes that current conditions will continue. The run rate can also refer to the average annual dilution from company stock option grants over the most recent three-year period recorded in the annual report. – Investopedia


1. Software as a service (SaaS) (also known as subscribe ware or rent ware) is a software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted. It is sometimes referred to as "on-demand software", and was formerly referred to as "software plus services" by Microsoft.] – Wikipedia

2. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is a software licensing model in which access to the software is provided on a subscription basis, with the software being located on external servers rather than on servers located in-house. Software-as-a-Service is typically accessed through a web browser, with users logging into the system using a username and password. Instead of each user having to install the software on their computer, the user is able to access the program via the internet. – Investopedia

SAFE - Simple Agreement for Future Equity

A SAFE (simple agreement for future equity) is an agreement between an investor and a company that provides rights to the investor for future equity in the company similar to a warrant, except without determining a specific price per share at the time of the initial investment. The SAFE investor receives the futures shares when a priced round of investment or liquidation event occurs. SAFEs are intended to provide a simpler mechanism for startups to seek initial funding than convertible notes. – Wikipedia

Secondary Public Offering

1. When a company offers up new stock for sale to the public after an IPO. Often occurs when founders step down or desire to move into a lesser role within the company. – Tech Republic

2. A secondary offering is the sale of new or closely held shares by a company that has already made an initial public offering (IPO). There are two types of secondary offerings. A non-dilutive secondary offering is a sale of securities in which one or more major stockholders in a company sell all or a large portion of their holdings. The proceeds from this sale are paid to the stockholders that sell their shares. Meanwhile, a dilutive secondary offering involves creating new shares and offering them for public sale – Investopedia


1. The market that a startup companies product or service fits into. Examples include: consumer technology, cleantech, biotech, and enterprise technology. Venture Capitalists tend to have experience investing in specific related sectors and thus tend not to invest outside of their area of expertise – Tech Republic

2. A sector is an area of the economy in which businesses share the same or a related product or service. It can also be thought of as an industry or market that shares common operating characteristics. Dividing an economy into different sectors allows for more in-depth analysis of the economy as a whole. – Investopedia

Seed Round/Seed Funding

1. The first round of venture capital funding for a business venture. This is for the development stage, just past the angel round, and can be up to $1 million of capital. Subsequent rounds are referred to in terms of Series (Series A, B, C, D, E) or stages (startup stage, formative stage, mezzanine stage) – We Work

2. Seed money, sometimes known as seed funding or seed capital, is a form of securities offering in which an investor invests capital in a startup company in exchange for an equity stake or convertible note stake in the company. The term seed suggests that this is a very early investment, meant to support the business until it can generate cash of its own (see cash flow), or until it is ready for further investments. Seed money options include friends and family funding, seed venture capital funds, angel funding, and crowdfunding. – Wikipedia

3. The term seed capital refers to the type of financing used in the formation of a startup. Funding is provided by private investors—usually in exchange for an equity stake in the company or for a share in the profits of a product. Much of the seed capital a company raises may come from sources close to its founders including family, friends, and other acquaintances. Obtaining seed capital is the first of four funding stages required for a startup to become an established business. – Investopedia

Series A / Series B

Series A financing (also known as series A round or series A funding) is one of the stages in the capital-raising process by a startup. Essentially, the series A round is the second stage of startup financing and the first stage of venture capital financing. – CFI

Series B financing (also known as series B round or series B funding) is one of the stages in the capital-raising process of a startup. Essentially, the series B round is the third stage of startup financing and the second stage of venture capital financing. - CFI

Shareholders Agreement

An agreement among a corporation’s shareholders describing how the company should be operated, and setting forth the shareholders’ respective rights and obligations, as between themselves. A shareholders agreement includes information on the regulation of the shareholders’ relationship, the management of the company, ownership of shares and privileges and protection of shareholders.


1. The stage of development a startup company is in. There is no explicit rule for what defines each stage of a company, but startups tend to be categorized as seed stage, early stage, mid-stage, and late stage. Most VCs firms only invest in companies in one or two stages. Some firms, however, manage multiple funds geared toward different stage companies. – Tech Republic

2. Stage refers to the first phase in the life cycle of a new business. During the development stage, companies focus on establishing themselves through activities such as market research, product development, and the construction of new manufacturing facilities. – Investopedia

Startup Ecosystem

1. As with an ecosystem in nature, a startup ecosystem has its food chain. There are the hunters, the herd and the bottom feeders. Work out where you are and where you want to be then get involved in your startup ecosystem. If they city you are in doesn’t have incubators, accelerators, co-working spaces, mentors and investors, you should a). move to another city, or b). start your own ecosystem. – Medium

2. A startup ecosystem is formed by people, startups in their various stages and various types of organizations in a location (physical or virtual), interacting as a system to create and scale new startup companies. These organizations can be further divided into categories such as universities, funding organizations, support organizations (like incubators, accelerators, co-working spaces etc.), research organizations, service provider organizations (like legal, financial services etc.) and large corporations. Local Governments and Government organizations such as Commerce / Industry / Trade departments also play an important role in startup ecosystem. Different organizations typically focus on specific parts of the ecosystem function and startups at their specific development stage – Wikipedia

Sweat Equity

1. Sweat equity is a party's contribution to a project in the form of labour, as opposed to financial equity such as paying others to perform the task. – Wikipedia

2. The term sweat equity refers to a person or company's contribution toward a business venture or other project. Sweat equity is generally not monetary and, in most cases, comes in the form of physical labour, mental effort, and time. Sweat equity is commonly found in real estate and the construction industry, as well as in the corporate world—especially for startups. – Investopedia

Tag Along Rights

These rights assure a minority shareholder in a company that if a majority shareholder negotiates to sell his or her shares to an outside third party, that minority equity holder will be allowed to join the transaction and also sell his or her shares on the same terms and conditions. These rights protect minority shareholders.

Target Market

1. Target market is the end consumer to which the company wants to sell its end products too. Target marketing involves breaking down the entire market into various segments and planning marketing strategies accordingly for each segment to increase the market share. – Economic times

2. Target market refers to a group of potential customers to whom a company wants to sell its products and services. This group also includes specific customers to whom a company directs its marketing efforts. A target market is one part of the total market for a good or service. – Investopedia


1. A unicorn is a term in business world to indicate a privately held startup company valued at over $1 billion.The term was coined in 2013 by venture capitalist Aileen Lee, choosing the mythical animal to represent the statistical rarity of such successful ventures. Decacorn is a word used for those companies over $10 billion, while hectocorn is used for such a company valued over $100 billion. – Wikipedia

2. A unicorn is a term used in the venture capital industry to describe a privately held startup company with a value of over $1 billion. The term was first popularized by venture capitalist Aileen Lee, founder of CowboyVC, a seed stage venture capital fund based in Palo Alto, California. – Investopedia

Valley of Death

The term "death valley curve" describes the period in the life of a startup in which it has begun operations but has not yet generated revenue. It is commonly used among venture capitalists (VCs). 
It is derived from the shape of a startup company's cashflow burn when plotted on a graph. During this period, the company depletes the initial equity capital provided by its shareholders. - Investopedia


1. The process by which a company's worth or value is determined. An analyst will look at capital structure, management team, and revenue or potential revenue, among other things – Tech Republic

2. Valuation is the analytical process of determining the current (or projected) worth of an asset or a company. There are many techniques used for doing a valuation. An analyst placing a value on a company looks at the business's management, the composition of its capital structure, the prospect of future earnings, and the market value of its assets, among other metrics. – Investopedia

Value Proposition

1. A value proposition is a promise of value to be delivered, communicated, and acknowledged. It is also a belief from the customer about how value (benefit) will be delivered, experienced and acquired. – Wikipedia

2. A value proposition refers to the value a company promises to deliver to customers should they choose to buy their product. A value proposition is part of a company's overall marketing strategy. The value proposition provides a declaration of intent or a statement that introduces a company's brand to consumers by telling them what the company stands for, how it operates, and why it deserves their business. – Investopedia

VC - Venture Capitalist

1. A professional individual who invests money in businesses in exchange for an equity share of the company. Because VCs and venture capital firms invest institutional dollars (for investors, funds, and pension plans, etc.), they usually focus on proven or later-stage startups and invest greater amounts of money (typically at least $2 million per round) – We work

2. A venture capitalist (VC) is a private equity investor that provides capital to companies exhibiting high growth potential in exchange for an equity stake. This could be funding startup ventures or supporting small companies that wish to expand but do not have access to equities markets. Venture capitalists are willing to risk investing in such companies because they can earn a massive return on their investments if these companies are a success. VCs experience high rates of failure due to the uncertainty that is involved with new and unproven companies – Investopedia


1. The schedule under which founders and employees must remain in the company before receiving their full share of the equity. For example, if you have a five-year vesting schedule you may get access to 0% in year one, 25% in year two, 50% in year three, 75% in year four, and 100% in year five. A vesting schedule helps to instil staff loyalty and keep the company together for a certain period of time. Cliff vesting is when someone becomes fully vested on a specified date.- We work

2. Vesting is a legal term that means to give or earn a right to a present or future payment, asset, or benefit. It is most commonly used in reference to retirement plan benefits when an employee accrues nonforfeitable rights over employer-provided stock incentives or employer contributions made to the employee's qualified retirement plan account or pension plan. – Investopedia

White-Hat Hackers

1. The term "white hat" in Internet slang refers to an ethical computer hacker, or a computer security expert, who specializes in penetration testing and in other testing methodologies that ensures the security of an organization's information systems.- Wikipedia

2. White-hat hackers use their powers for good. They help out organizations that might have security breaches before the organizations get hacked. Hacking doesn't always mean hacking into someone else's system.- Investopedia