An online community devoted to helping start-ups duel with venture capitalists is opening an institute to train technology entrepreneurs how to build top-notch businesses.
TheFunded.com has recruited 25 successful chief executives, among them Jason Calacanis of human-driven online search tool Mahalo.com, to be mentors or teachers at an institute to open in Silicon Valley in the coming months.
"Starting a great company has become increasingly difficult over the last 15 years that I have been an entrepreneur," said Adeo Ressi, who launched TheFunded in 2007 as an online forum where entrepreneurs learn ways to swim among financial sharks and not be devoured.
Ressi believes the Institute will bring about "the next wave of quality high-tech start-ups" and said the aim is to "simplify the process of launching a new company."
TheFunded lets start-up chief executives rate venture capitalists and share stories of dealings with them.
The Institute's four-month sessions are to include lessons in creating business plans, getting financial backing, and guarding against being ousted by investors eager to reap profits.
Institute partners include Microsoft's business incubator unit BizSpark, according to Ressi.
TheFunded now claims more than 11,000 chief executives as members and the website lists more than 4,000 funding sources for start-ups.
(c) 2009 AFP
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