The Problem: Startup Lessons

The Problem: Startup Lessons

A couple of weeks ago, Baltimore visionary Dave Troy lamented on the shallowness of startups that form when there's an increased availability of investment capital. He wrote:

“Consumer-facing, peer-to-peer commerce start-ups are hot, but how many tie-sharing services does the country really need? (Yes, there is hot competition in this space.) Ideas like these are attractive because they are easy to act on quickly. But harder problems like truly innovative biotechnology and next-generation manufacturing cannot be incubated in a few weeks by Red Bull-drinking, Ramen-eating young programmers. We run the risk of creating the cult of the McStartup.”

This passage touches upon one of the more problematic reasons that companies form in the first place: because there is money to be made in a certain sector. This results in products and services that may not necessarily be innovative, but that answer an existent demand and might create some jobs in the process.

The problem, of course, is that this demand rapidly fades once the market fully matures. We’ve recently seen this happen with

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