Archive for April, 2010

Gasellit Blog is now in a new location (self-hosted WordPress) and www.gasellit.com is pointing to the right location.

You can easily differentiate the old and new blog look&feel: the new one is quite a bit more blueish!


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If you’re a company preparing for a financing round in the near future, you should already know what is a Due Diligence (commonly known also as DD). If not, read on. If you do know what Due Diligence is, you might be interested how to do is cost-efficiently.

Wikipedia defines Due Diligence as follows:

Due Diligence is a term used for a number of concepts involving either the performance of an investigation of a business or person prior to signing of a contract, or the performance of an act with a certain standard of care.

Nowadays there are many kinds of Due Diligences, for example Legal, Financial, Technical, Commercial and Environmental. The scope of the Due Diligence will depend on the size and scale of the transaction and the surrounding risks.

We will focus here  on investment-round related Legal Due Diligence, and more specifically on Vendor Due Diligence which is done by the company itself in the preparation phase of the investment round. Due Diligence prepared for an acquisition is in many aspects similar to what we discuss here, but has naturally its own specific issues.

Legal Due Diligence focuses on showing that the future prospects of the company have a secure legal base. For example, it includes information about intellectual property rights (IPR) and customer as well as employee agreements.

Financial Due Diligence focuses on financial issues, and the most important of these usually fall into the categories of earnings, assets, liabilities, cash-flows, net cash or debt and management. In a typical investment round for a early-stage company these (historical) figures are often NOT the ones where the investment is based on.

Commercial Due Diligence is the process of investigating a company and its markets. It typically gathers information concerning published market information as well as information from customers, competitors and other market participants. While Financial Due Diligence is looking at the history, the Commercial Due Diligence is “forward-looking”.

Vendor Due Diligence is a Due Diligence that is made by the company itself. It’s often likely that your investors will make their own Due Diligence, especially if it’s about a larger amount of money. Vendor Due Diligence and a Due Diligence made by the investors are by no means contradictory. And as crowdfunding-style investment rounds are getting more popular, there is an increasing need for quality-evidence to be shown by the company. Vendor Due Diligence is very good for that.

In practise, a Vendor Due Diligence will be done with the help of a Virtual Data Room. It’s an online, secure storage which will help to store and process all the material, whether it is information filled with template or uploaded PDF’s.

By now you must already be thinking that there is no guaranteed quality in the Vendor Due Diligence. You’re right, and wrong as well. When done properly, the Vendor Due Diligence is completed by a verification by an external, independent lawyer. A properly made Vendor Due Diligence together with qualified verification is very valuable tool as part of an investment round.

We at Venture Bonsai have created a standardized and easy-to-use self-service, on-line Vendor Due Diligence process for small and medium-size software/mobile/Internet companies. You can complete it without extensive legal knowledge and have the information verified by your local lawyer. Its main purpose is to guide you through the most important aspects of the Due Diligence. It’s not fully complete, so to say, for that you still need to hire your lawyers. But the reality is that practically no companies looking for funding are doing any kind of Due Diligence so this will both help you to differentiate and find possible holes to be filled. If you’re interested, please get in touch.

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In the series of “Elevator Pitch on the Video” we are proud to present Fansmagnet!

For more information please visit the website www.fansmagnet.com.

This “Elevator Pitch on the Video” was produced by Venture Bonsai and is made with a specific script for companies looking for funding. With this well-defined script and process the production cost was 80% lower than it would normally be. For each company, there is also another video produced. This second video is “Investor Pitch” , it’s purpose being to answer in more details questions regarding the business and the investment round. It’s about 5 minutes long and access to that video is granted by the presenting company.

Thank you also for our sponsors!

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Last year I got excited when I saw news telling that there will be new mobile service at the skiing resort we were planning to go. You know, while seeing all the hype exactly ten years ago, it’s about time for those services to emerge. Branded as Levi Digit the promise in the story was to give relevant special offers, table reservations, maps and all other information to your mobile.

Now six months later, while actually being at Levi, the skiing resort, it was time to test what they had to offer.

It starts all quite fine. There are ads for the mobile service in the resort magazine as well as in the ski bus. Cool. I enter mobi.levi.fi – a bit too long address for mobile use, but it’s doable (no, m.levi.fi does not work).

First thing I notice is that’s all in Finnish. No English version available. Oh no. Well luckily I happen to understand this language, but the tourists don’t.

The list of the sponsors looks promising. The mobile operator Sonera must have made sure the mobile service is really cool, and hey, Carlsberg could have some location-aware special offers for great skiers!

“Sää” is Weather in Finnish. Let’s see what’s the weather tomorrow.

Not too bad for skiing weather. But this does not tell me should I go to the slope in the morning while it’s still in good shape, and whether I can still cross-country ski in the afternoon.

All right… let’s not make too quick conclusions. I try the remaining pages for general information and slope information. Must say I’m quite disappointed.

Conclusions are clear. This “service” is clearly done by an “ad agency”. No doubt about that.

Hey, remember our Mobile Wizard? What would The Wizard do? Let’s assume our Mobile Wizard for Levi™ would already be ready.

When arriving to the Kittilä Airport, the Wizard greeted me with a welcome message and directed me to the Airport Bus, which I of course could reserve and pre-pay with my mobile.

Mobile Wizard for Levi™ is a multi-platform mobile application for those visiting Levi skiing resort. It’s primary purpose would be helping tourists to take everything out of a vacation here. And for local businesses it would be the most important marketing tool ever invented.

Mobile Wizard for Levi™ features

  • All services a ski-traveller needs, in a single easy-to-use application (in her own language)
  • Wallet Wizard, leave wallet at the cottage (so you don’t lose it) and pay with your mobile
  • Friend Wizard, know where your friends are right now (and hide yourself, if you got lucky)
  • Hot Spot Wizard, know where you should be if you like things hot
  • Weather Wizard, including relevant user-generated weather reports for Downhill Skiing, Cross-Country Skiing, Snowmobiling and Bar Hopping
  • Reservation Wizard for restaurants and other businesses, including Coupon Wizard to get special deals and discounts (or VIP treatment!)
  • General information concerning slope and ski route condition, including User Generated Feedback
  • Event Wizard, with special benefits for Wizard users
  • Local Business Wizard, with Coupon Wizard  – find any business or service you may need

Technical speaking Mobile Wizard for Levi™ is

  • An application for iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Nokia or even a for a browser
  • A multi-lingual for end-users
  • Manageable in each store with a single Apple iPad
  • Compatible with any skiing resort

So is this reality or a vision? If you run a Skiing Resort, or sponsor one, please contact us for to find out how to get this done before your competition does! It’s all about a transactional service, not “mobile marketing”.

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