Thursday, May 21, 2009

Are you one of America's Most Promising Companies?

We all think we're special. Small technology businesses especially think so. Companies who win SBIR awards ARE special! Well, anyhow, they've won a limited funding competition. But does that mean they're going to be successful beyond an R&D effort? Not without having a lot of other factors be aligned. What are those factors? What makes one company more "promising" than another? And how does that translate to future fundability?

Forbes is curious to find out. So they've teamed with The Venture Alliance (TVA) to survey lots of small companies, do some assessment, and "identify the most promising of the bunch".

I read about this today in my issue of NetNews, the weekly newsletter of the National Association of Seed and Venture Funds (NASVF). Here's what it says:

TVA has developed a scoring algorithm based on a range of variables that determine a company's potential--and, ultimately, its worth to investors---including financial projections, current capitalization, market opportunity, intellectual property, management experience and others.

TVA crunches that data (which it collects via the survey) and reduces it to a "fundability score." Companies that score high theoretically have a better shot at raising money than those who don't.

TVA will do an analysis and produce a visual "Radar Graph" mapping that looks like this:

Those with top ratings will be considered for a spot on Forbes' upcoming list of America's Most Promising Companies. They will also be offered the opportunity to raise additional capital through TVA.

Here's the link to the survey:

This is cool stuff! I'm going to combine this with my trademarked Funding Readiness Level (FRL)® index and really be able to provide my SBIR clients with a dose of realism that provides clues to exactly what has to be worked on to improve future "fundability" for commercialization.

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