Reena Jadhav nterviewed Tod Francis of Shasta Ventures at Vator Splash. Tod’s enthusiasm is infectious as he shares his insights on the next billion dollar space. He's excited about Mobile computing, Mobile advertising, Mobile commerce and innovation in the Enterprise space.
When asked about Groupon, he states we’re seeing the first wave of email driven commerce and he predicts the next wave will be layered with social. Should Groupon have sold? He states they made a good call to stay independent given the strength of their business model.
Some of his favorite startups: Instagram, Formspring, Quora in Social, Pixaaza in Photo and Lithium in SAAS.
The biggest mistake entrepreneurs make when pitching is to wait too long to get to demo and customers. His team is very focused on the customer experience so he suggests leading with a demo after initial introductions.
In terms of fundraising climate, he points out that high priced rounds are an exception. While there is money available, funding is still tough since there is a lot less money available overall. So take fundraising efforts seriously but overall he sees very positive trends for technology companies!