Running Scared? Big Companies Increase Innovation Spending

To read the entire article writter by Lou Kerner click here

Established companies increasingly fund startups and take numerous measures as they seek to create innovative new businesses.

Just based on the numbers, you wouldn’t think established companies would be scared by the $50 billion invested this year in the U.S. by venture capitalists. The companies themselves will collectively spend over $330 billion this year on research and development, according to R&D Magazine.

Yet VC money is funding aggressive newcomers like Uber and Airbnb, and aims to create the next Teslas, Facebooks and Googles. Insurgent startups seem to be targeting every industry and even inventing new ones. The startups are wielding the weapons of the Internet—cloud, mobile, social, and data analytics—and deftly taking advantage of connectivity and the flattened business environment it enables.

Posted in M&A, Research, Venture Capital | Leave a comment

How Is Twitter Keeping Its Individual Users?

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Nov. 7 (BloombergTV) –- SoftTech VC Founder Jeff Clavier and Social Internet Fund  Founder Lou Kerner discuss Twitter timeline views and engagement. They speak on “Bloomberg West.”

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Snapchat Is a Very Good Bet for Yahoo: Kerner

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Oct. 22 (BloombergTV) — Lou Kerner, founder of the Social Internet Fund, and Bloomberg’s Sarah Frier discuss reports that Snapchat has closed an investment from Yahoo and is continuing to raise more money. He speaks with Bloomberg’s Brad Stone on “Bloomberg West.” (Source: Bloomberg)

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The Disruptive Technologies Speaker Series: Friday October 24th 2pm-3pm EST

To listen to the call click here

Lou Kerner Presents

 Angel Investing

How Big, How Fast, How Disruptive?


Gil Penchina

Largest Syndicate on Angel List


Jon Medved

Founder & CEO, OurCrowd


Brian Cohen

Chairman, New York Angels


When:        Friday, October 24th, 2014, from 2:00PM-3:00PM EST

Where:     Conference Call – Please email for dial in information

Please join us for a conference call featuring three thought leaders on the current state and future direction of Angel Investing. Click here to get the slides for the call (on the 24th).

Investopedia describes an Angel as “An investor who provides financial backing for small startups or entrepreneurs. Angel investors are usually found among an entrepreneur’s family and friends”.  That definition is quickly becoming outdated driven by the rise of platforms like Angel List, OurCrowd, and SeedInvest; and the increasing professionalism of groups like the New York Angels and Tech Coast Angels. And Angel Investing is no longer just for the seed rounds. Life360, a successful mobile app for staying connected with family members is raising $500,000 of a $50 million Series C on AngleList, where the leading syndicates (like those led by Gil Penchina) are “backed” by over 500 investors that can combine for over $4 million in any one deal. The OurCrowd platform has raised over $65 million for 50 companies over the past two years, including $3.3 million for ReWalk. The last round for ReWalk was raised in July, two months before its IPO, which had a first day rise of 113%, making it the top performing IPO in the 3rd quarter.

How is this dramatic growth of these new investing platforms changing the VC landscape? How have Angel groups evolved to more effectively meet the market needs? What companies should take advantage of these capital sources? How can investors sift through all the choices? What returns should the investors expect? What are the industry trends that the broad market is unaware of? Are Angels concerned that we’re in a Bubble or that burn rates for many companies are too high? How are the pending regulations going to change the industry dynamics? These questions and others will be addressed by our panel of crowdfunding experts.


Speaker Bios

Gil Penchina – Largest Syndicate on AngelList. Gil is a serial entrepreneur and prolific angel investor. He currently runs 6 venture funds via AngelList with more launching every month. The funds are crowd-sourced from 1,000+ influential angels. He is a co-founder of Fastly, and board member at Vouch Financial. Previously he was CEO of Wikia, now a top 50 website and was a member of the pre-IPO team at eBay. Before eBay, Gil worked at General Electric, Bain & Co. and started two small technology companies. He has a Bachelors in Engineering from the University of Massachusetts and an MBA from Kellogg.   In addition, Gil has been an active angel investor in 70 companies over the last 12 years including firms such as Linkedin, Paypal, AngelList, Datanyze, Contactually, Indiegogo, Evite, ZipRealty, Plusmo, Couchsurfing, Songpop, Wealthfront and many others. His portfolio is available at:


Jon Medved – Founder and CEO of OurCrowd a leading equity crowdfunding platform for accredited investors, having raised almost $70M for 51 portfolio companies since its launch in February 2013. Medved has been both an entrepreneur and investor: He has been part of the founding teams at several successful Israeli startups, and as a venture and angel investor over the past two decades he invested in over 150 startup companies, helping to bring 15 of them to values in excess of $100Million. Between 2006-2012, Medved was the co-founder and CEO of Vringo, a leader in the innovation, development and monetization of mobile technologies and intellectual property. Medved led Vringo to a successful completion of its IPO in June, 2010. Medved was previously the founder and General Partner of Israel Seed Partners, one of Israel’s leading venture capital funds, with exits including (acquired by Ebay) and (Nasdaq: ANSW, acquired by Summit),


Brian Cohen – Chairman of the New York Angels – As Chairman of the New York Angels, Brian oversees the leading NYC seed capital investor network, which has invested over $100 million into more than 110 early stage technology companies. Among his numerous early stage investments, Brian was the first investor in Pinterest. As a new author, Brian‘s book entitled “What Every Angel Investor Wants You To Know To Raise Smart Money For Billion Dollar Ideas” was published by McGraw Hill and is now available in multiple languages around the world. Brian also co-founded, with his son Trace, the first direct-to-customer, self-publishing Event news platform called in May 2012. As an educator, Brian created the AIMS (Advanced Internet Media Studies) Program, a college semester program where students will be trained to use the internet smartly and professionally. He also advises entrepreneur students at NYU and Columbia University. Brian holds a Masters Degree in Science Communications from Boston University’s School of Public Communications and is the recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award.

RSVP to to get dial in information


The content of this broadcast/ presentation does not involve the rendering of personalized investment advice and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell, or a solicitation of any offer to buy or sell the securities mentioned herein it is for and is for informational or discussion purposes only. Nor does it reflect the adoption or endorsement of the views of the individual presenters.


This background information contains only news, facts, and commentary on information previously reported from a news source believed to be accurate and reliable by the author.

Posted in Angel Investing, IPO, Private Shares, Research | 1 Comment

How to leverage the metrics of attractiveness


Fo read full article click here

…Lou Kerner, the founder of The Social Internet Fund, and I met in the elevator, which is always a good networking place. Lou invests in the primary and secondary shares of rapidly growing social media and mobile companies. I asked him what he’s attracted to when investing in a company. “Data! I focus on companies that customers love and I determine the level of my interest by looking at their user data.” Lou goes on to say that “I involve myself in every stage. We’ve invested in companies very early as well as just months away from IPO.”

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Heidi Messer, Alan Patricof, Lou Kerner, Others on What It Takes to Grow in NYC


A panel that followed Messer trumpeted New York as a place for startups to grow—with some caveats. “I don’t think there is going to be a ‘next Silicon Valley,’ but New York can be a tremendous tech hub,” said Lou Kerner, founder of The Social Internet Fund.


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Announcing the 2014 Power Players in Digital Media

The AlwaysOn Power Players in Digital Entertainment list honors the most influential people in the banking, venture capital, legal, talent, government, and accounting world supporting digital media startup entrepreneurs who are bringing massive technology breakthroughs to the world of media, advertising, marketing, social commerce, branding, and public relations. 

See the entire list here

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I was thrilled to Co-Host Incubate2104 at the beautiful Filoli Estates in redwood City.  The event that brought together over 200 executives from industry leading Incubators, Accelerators, and VC firms.  We are in the process of planning Incubate2015.  You can see the 2014 Agneda here and the 2014 list of speakers here

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Twitter dives into e-commerce

Internet Retailer

For full article click here

….It’s a good strategy because it doesn’t force users to change the way they use Twitter, says Lou Kerner, a social media analyst and investor at The Social Internet Fund.

“Twitter is about what’s happening right now, and so as long as e-commerce follows that approach, using sales with a short lifespan or that offer a limited number of items, it should work extremely well,” he says.

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As Online Video Surges, the .TV Domain Rides the Wave

New York Times

Full article can be found here

…..“The original vision upon which DotTV was founded is coming true before our eyes,” Mr. Kerner said. “It’s just taken longer than we thought, but it could be even bigger than we thought.”

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