We don't fund a "one man band"

Unlike a record company, investors don't ordinarily fund one man bands. There's many reasons for this, including the dislike of key man reliance i.e. if the founder gets bored and walks then your investment is screwed. However, it also raises questions about why the owner hasn't been able to persuade anyone else to join them in the endeavour - can't they persuade anyone of the merits of the idea or is the founder unable to work with others? Neither are great for an investor. It's also alleged that no one is good at everything and even if that's not true, can they really do everything simultaneously without compromising on quality?

Someone I met at last week's ContentMixer event at the Savoy in London suggested to me that entrepreneurship is a lonely affair - well, investors prefer it not to be. As they say on "Who wants to be a millionaire", would you like to phone a friend?

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posted by John Wilson @ 11:34 PM Permanent Link newsvine reddit


At 8:42 AM, Blogger Paul said...

Very true - look at all the successfully backed ventures out there - YouTube, Google, Skype, myspace you name it - they're all double acts - Chad and Steve, Larry and Sergey, Niklas and Janus, Chris and Tom.

At 9:24 AM, Blogger Hawkeye said...

Whilst I think your comments are in general correct I would add that occasionally you find someone who is able to collaborate with only a few people (if at all)because of the nature of their character. If they are also capable of original thought and thus do come up with a great idea then in all likelihood it will be a great achievement and worth investing in. Einstein possibly fitted this bill as does Felix Dennis the publisher. Who would want to work with Donald Trump or Alan Sugar? But they have been successful in many things. They have had their spectacular failures as well and probably because they did not have anyone they would listen to, warning them of the errors at the time. There are many other examples like this, but they would be the exception rather than the rule.


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