Startup company

Startup company

A startup company or start-up is a company with a limited operating history. These companies, generally newly created, are in a phase of development and research for markets. The term became popular internationally during the dot-com bubble when a great number of dot-com companies were founded. A high tech startup company is a startup company specialized in a high tech industry.

Evolution of a startup company

Startup companies can come in all forms, including those that are simply life-style companies, but the phrase "startup company" is often associated with high growth, technology oriented companies. Investors are generally most attracted to those new companies distinguished by their risk/reward profile and scalability. That is, they have lower bootstrapping costs, higher risk, and higher potential return on investment. Successful startups are typically more scalable than an established business, in the sense that they can potentially grow rapidly with limited investment of capital, labor or land.

Startups enjoy several unique options for funding. Venture capital firms and angel investors may help startup companies begin operations, exchanging cash for an equity stake. In practice though, many startups are initially funded by the founders themselves. Factoring is another option, though not unique to start ups.

A critical task in setting up a business is to conduct research in order to validate, assess and develop the ideas or business concepts in addition to opportunities to establish further and deeper understanding on the ideas or business concepts as well as their commercial potential.

If a company's value is based on its technology, it is often equally important for the business owners to obtain intellectual property protection for their idea. The newsmagazine The Economist estimated that up to 75% of the value of US public companies is now based on their intellectual property (up from 40% in 1980). [See generally A Market for Ideas, ECONOMIST, Oct. 22, 2005, at 3, 3 (special insert)] Often, 100% of a small startup company's value is based on its intellectual property. As such, it is important for technology oriented start up companies to develop a sound strategy for protecting their intellectual capital as early as possible. [For a discussion of such issues, "see, e.g.," Strategic management issues for starting an IP company, Szirom, S.Z., RAPID, HTF Res. Inc., USA (ISBN:0-7695-0465-5); What Business Owners Should Know About Patenting, Wall Street Journal, available at (Interview with James McDonough, Intellectual property attorney), ]

Startup companies, particularly those associated with new technology, sometimes produce huge returns to their creators and investors – a recent example of such was Google, whose creators are now billionaires through their share ownership. However, the failure rate of startup companies is very high. Based on a research, founder CEOs of high-tech companies can typically expect their stock to be worth about $6,500,000 (statistical average) if the company succeeds in going public(in 1997) [ [ "High Tech Start Up, Revised and Updated: The Complete Handbook For Creating Successful New High Tech Companies", John L. Nesheim] ]

While there are startup businesses created in all types of businesses, and all over the world, some locations and business sectors are particularly associated with startup companies. The Internet bubble of the late 1990s was associated with huge numbers of internet startup companies, some selling the technology to provide internet access, others using the internet to provide services. Most of this startup activity was located in Silicon Valley, an area of northern California renowned for the high level of startup company activity.

A company may cease to be a startup as it passes various milestones, such as becoming profitable, or becoming publicly traded in an IPO, or ceasing to exist as an independent entity via a merger or acquisition.


"Startupers" is a term used in the software industry to describe people involved in the creation of high tech startups. Typically, startupers are entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, software engineers, web developers, and others involved in the ground level of a new high tech venture.

ee also

* Business incubator
* Business plan
*dot-com company
* Entrepreneurship
* Exit strategy
* Factoring (finance)

* Liquidity event
* Not Just For Profit
* Private Equity
* Silicon Valley and Green Technology Valley
* Stock market bubble
* Venture capital

Further reading

Technical guides

*New Venture Creation, Jeffry A. Timmons, ISBN 0-07-287570-4
* [ How to Start a Startup] , by Paul Graham
* [ Why Not Not Start a Startup] , by Paul Graham
* [ 11 Golden Tips to Cut Costs when Launching a Startup] , by Businesshackers
* [ The Flipping Start-Up Guy] by Michael De'Shazer
* [ Amazing Startups] by Amazing Startups

tartup biography

*"High Stakes, No Prisoners: A Winner's Tale of Greed and Glory in the Internet Wars" Charles Ferguson, ISBN 0-8129-3143-2
*"Startup: A Silicon Valley Adventure", Jerry Kaplan ISBN 0-395-71133-9
*"Burn Rate:How I Survived the Gold Rush", Michael Wolf, ISBN 0-684-84881-3
*"Go BIG or Go HOME: How the next generation of startup companies think BIG, grow FAST, and dominate markets overnight", Wil Schroter, ISBN 1-599-71274-1
* Hervé Lebret, "Start-Up : what we may still learn from Silicon Valley", CreateSpace, 2007, ISBN 1-434-82006-8


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