David Smith

David Smith’s business podcast

Selling Your Patent

This episode explains why companies buy patents, what they’re looking for in a patent, what patents are most sellable, and what prices patents collect on the market. It guides patent holders through the process of selling a patent, and helps them navigate the legal minefields along the way.

Venue–Where to File Suit Against Companies Infringing your Patents?

How the small town of Marshall in Eastern Texas became the battlefield for patent lawsuits and how the T.C. Heartland case has shifted cases to courthouses in other states, like Delaware, that don’t want to hear them.

Patenting by Numbers

Understand the bizarre patent marketplace through looking at the numbers. For example, 98.5% of patents are never asserted. This translates to $60bn spent on patents that are never used. Podcast covers cost of prosecution, maintenance, litigation, inter-parte review (IPR) as well as statistics on fee shifting and other topics.

Why Startup Valuation is Not Startup Valuation

This episodes explains how startups are valued and presents the argument as to why venture capital investments in startup ventures should not be used as the basis to place a valuation on the company.

Preferred Pizza Toppings

This episode explains how venture capital investors get preferred stock, and founders get common stock. Preferential toppings provided to investors include liquidation preferences, veto rights, board rights, anti-dilution rights, co-sale and drag-along rights. David Smith talks to Mark Cameron White, founder of the White Summers law firm, about the terms Mark’s seeing in Silicon Valley and elsewhere today.

Patent Trolls, Corporate Lobbying & Misleading the American Public

How large corporate interests have lobbied Washington, misled the American public and seriously damaged the US patent system at the expense of inventors and small startups.

Forming the Startup Company and Partnering with Co-Founders

David talks to Mark Cameron White, Harvard-educated lawyer who founded and financed hundreds of Silicon Valley startups, about forming the company and forming the founding team.

Interview with Paul Kallmes, Entrepreneurship and Angel Investment Expert at the Vault, San Francisco

Paul Kallmes discusses entrepreneurship, international expansion, managing risk, pitching investors, raising finance from venture capital investors, angel investing and even rock climbing in this interview from the Vault, an innovation ecosystem and global network of startup accelerators and collaborative workspaces with a facility in the heart of San Francisco.

Interview with Justin Kan, Co-Founder of Twitch

Justin Kan talks about how he became an entrepreneur, got into the Y-Combinator program, started live streaming his whole life, created Twitch and sold it to Amazon for $970m. Justin talks about his new startup, Atrium, a tech-driven law firm servicing startups and high growth companies from its base in San Francisco.

The Startup Journey–Targeting your Destination

If you don’t know where you’re going, what chance do you have of getting there? This is the first in a series of episodes on the startup journey and today we’re talking about targeting your destination. Future episodes will deal with other aspects of your journey like generating momentum, gathering your provisions, setting and achieving milestones and selecting your travelling companions.

In this series on the startup journey, you’ll learn that you’re most likely to reach your destination if you know exactly where you’re going, you have sufficient fuel to get there, you plan for contingencies, maintain momentum and assemble a winning team.

This episode looks at some of the alternative destinations you might want to select for your startup.  We’re going to talk about independent survival, where you build a business independent of outside investment, with the goal of generating profitable revenues, for years to come.

We’ll talk about IPO, where you build a company that has its shares traded on the public markets.  “IPO” stands for “initial public offering”.

Then we’ll divide a sale of the company into two types. Cash flow sale is where you sell the company as a profitable going concern. The buyer is getting a cash-flow generating business.

The term “asset sale” has a more specific meaning in legal jargon, but for the purpose of our startup journey, we’ll use this to refer to a situation where a buyer acquires your company for your product or technology.  In Silicon Valley, there are situations where unprofitable companies are acquired when they have a hot product, or some unique technology or asset that will enhance the buyer’s business.

In this episode you get to learn the basics of how venture capital investment funds operate, how they select startups for investment and what types of companies are suitable for venture capital investment.

This is an important episode as it provides a foundation for future discussions we will have on this podcast series.

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