At a recent startup demo event, the event sponsor, who I won’t name, boasted that their “members have been bought by Google, Facebook, Oracle and others” and “have raised over $1 billion dollars in funding”. I assume it was an attempt to gather new members from the audience for the coworking spaces they offer.
Not once did the speaker mention the number of customers that their members have acquired, the amount of revenue generated or even the number of people they’ve helped. In just two sentences, I think they epitomised what’s wrong with today’s startup culture: acquisitions and funding rank higher in people’s priorities than actually helping people or generating money.
In a world where 99% of “start-ups” will never become the next Uber, Google or Airbnb, how exactly is this a sustainable approach to starting and running a business?