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In a world where the cost of launching products and companies continues to plummet, we believe lethal talent is more valuable than cash capital. Like most people investing in early-stage businesses, we also believe that finding and hiring the right talent represents the greatest risk factor to an early-stage company’s ultimate success.
Unlike everyone else investing in early-stage businesses, we solve the talent problem first and apply it with ruthless abandon. Right now. To identify the specific market, product and demand generation strategies that are most likely to create a winning outcome. To execute those strategies in time frames faster than otherwise possible. To remove risk from the pursuit of victory.
We invest lethal talent like normal VCs invest cash. Every year we meet 250 companies. We work with 50 of them. We aim to invest in a minimum of 10. They can be pure startups. Late stage opportunities. Anything in between. They just need to have the potential to be category leaders in big markets, and the vision to embrace a better model for getting there.
One way we invest our talent is through our Earned Equity program. In these situations, we work with businesses to define the most valuable operational outcomes that can be achieved within a 90 – 180 day period. We scope that body of work based on the diverse Thinktiv talent that will be tapped to execute. If we decide we want to invest we determine the full price of those deliverables, and then dramatically discount it so the client can preserve capital. We apply the value of that discount to purchase equity in the client’s business, typically warrants on the company’s common stock.
When our involvement in a business reveals and makes possible a truly exceptional market opportunity, we make more strategic investments. In these situations, we will invest key talent – at no charge – to cement the investment hypothesis. We then activate the Thinktiv Network, our hand-picked community of trusted high net worth individuals and operational badasses, who believe our model offers a better mousetrap for generating early-stage investment returns. The Thinktiv Network invests the capital required to aggressively pursue category leadership – funding the existing team and Thinktiv’s work.
Since January 2011, we have been scaling our Ventures model:
1011 San Jacinto Blvd. #202
Austin, TX 78701 (map)
111 N. Whitfield St., 3rd Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15206 (map)
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