Amazon Takes A 25% Stake In Colis Prive To Ramp Up Its Delivery Network In France

A good expansion, and taking a good stroll into the scale of Le Web.

TechCrunch

E-commerce giant Amazon has reportedly made its first investment into the French market: it has acquired a 25% stake in Colis Privé, a delivery company that competes in France against the likes of state-owned La Poste, and global giants TNT, DHL, UPS and FedEx to deliver parcels. The news was first reported by the French blog le Journal du Net, and we are reaching out to both companies for confirmation.

Terms of the investment were not disclosed.

If accurate, the move makes a lot of sense for a number of reasons. In the U.S. Amazon has built up a formidable logistics operation. But to improve margins and general efficiency, it has been slowly working on ways of extending that even further, with reports last week that it is testing a parcel delivery service in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. Last-mile delivery is something that companies like Google…

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Plan for Three Years of Personal Runway

I guess it depends on the number of dependents and lifestyle to boot the fixed should more or less be well within the three-way mark. Otherwise, i’d probably do six.

David Cummings on Startups

For years I thought that entrepreneurs should plan for two years of personal runway to have sufficient time to iterate on an idea and get to break even. Looking back on it, I was wrong. After starting a few companies and investing in several more, I now believe entrepreneurs should plan for three years of financial runway.

Here are a few reasons why entrepreneurs should plan for three years:

  • Pardot took three years and Hannon Hill took four years to clear $1 million in revenue ($1 million is a great milestone for sustainability as well as the ability to pay a decent salary for the founders)
  • Almost all successful companies go through at least one pivot (see examples)
  • Finding product/market fit often takes 1-2 years and building a repeatable customer acquisition process often takes 1-2 years, making the prospects of solid revenue in less than three years unlikely…

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Welcome To The Unicorn Club: Learning From Billion-Dollar Startups

TechCrunch

Editor’s note:Aileen Lee is founder of Cowboy Ventures, a seed-stage fund that backs entrepreneurs reinventing work and personal life through software. Previously, she joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in 1999 and was also founding CEO of digital media company RMG Networks, backed by KPCB. Follow her on Twitter @aileenlee

Many entrepreneurs, and the venture investors who back them, seek to build billion-dollar companies.

Why do investors seem to care about “billion dollar exits”? Historically, top venture funds have driven returns from their ownership in just a few companies in a given fund of many companies. Plus, traditional venture funds have grown in size, requiring larger “exits” to deliver acceptable returns. For example – to return just the initial capital of a $400 million venture fund, that might mean needing to own 20 percent of two different $1 billion companies, or 20 percent of a $2 billion…

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