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News
Stage

Adopting a Private Equity Approach to Venture Capital Investing

Stage GP Krista Morgan was a featured guest on The Private Equity Podcast hosted by Alex Rawlings. In this episode, Krista and Alex talked about:

– How PE firms take over companies and lead them to growth
– What it’s like to work in a female-led investment fund
– Why most start-ups fail
– The publicity and business that comes with winning awards

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News
Stage

Is it time to fire the founding CEO?

Tough times means investors are likely to become more assertive across the board, and the question of replacing founding CEOs is going to come up more often. Early-stage investors are usually reluctant to get involved, but as companies face difficulty raising cash, fiduciary responsibility becomes more important and board members will feel increasingly accountable to the other shareholders.

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Stage

Economic pressures stress payment fintechs

Payments players PayPal, Klarna and Bolt all recently moved to restructure their businesses in the face of new economic pressures, and another peer, Fast, shuttered altogether, highlighting the emerging macro-economic perils for fintechs. Stage GP Krista Morgan comments on Lynne Marek’s recent Payments Dive piece on payment fintech firms.

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News
Stage

Innovation of the Venture Studio Model

A venture studio is a model for entrepreneurship that combines company building with venture funding. Given the success of venture studios for startups and investors, the number of studios has grown to over 560 worldwide. What differentiates the venture studio model? And what is the next innovation of the venture studio model?

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News
Stage

Rethinking Startup Failure: An Alternative to Series B

2021 was a banner year for early-stage investments; venture funding doubled year over year to $200 billion across 8,000 startups. The uncertainty and disruption of a global pandemic did not compress valuations as initially expected, and the amount of funding per round means an average Series A company has now raised over $20 million. And yet, amidst this investment fervor, 50% of Series A companies will fail to raise a Series B round, taking them off the venture path.

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News
Stage

Stage wants to catch the Series B knife

Stage Fund is raising $50 million for its second fund to buy startups that are struggling to raise their Series B rounds.

About half of the companies that raise Series A never go on to raise another round, but between 20% and 30% are still good businesses, according to Stage’s Krista Morgan.

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News
Stage

Meet the GP’s – Dan Frydenlund

Dan Frydenlund, Founder, Chairman, CEO & General Partner of Stage Fund, joins us for our third episode in our “Meet the GPs” series.

Dan speaks about
– developing the Stage Fund model
– building a female-led private equity fund and
– the evolution of Stage for their first and second fund

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News
Stage

How to Survive the Gap in Funding Rounds?

A 2019 report from the Bureau of Labor concludes that 21.5% of startups fail in the first year, 30% in the second year, 50% in the fifth year, and 70% in their 10th year. We talked with Brett Jurgens, CEO & co-founder of Notion, about his advice for other founders looking to make it to past Series A.

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News
Stage

How to Cut to Breakeven

As founders, we all want to grow to breakeven by achieving scale, but sometimes your only option is to cut your way to breakeven. Here is Krista Morgan’s practical guide for founders & CEOs to build and execute a successful breakeven plan.

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News
Stage

Meet the GP’s – Ingrid Alongi

We are back with the second of our three part series introducing the General Partners of Stage Fund. 

We sat down with Ingrid Alongi to learn
– her perspective on the “technical co-founder myth”
– guidance and advice for women in tech and
– the technical evaluation and diligence process for Stage Fund on acquiring B2B SaaS tech platforms

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2021
News
Stage

2021 Year in Review

With 2021 coming to a close, we reflect on a year of building and for many, shifting from the disruption of 2020. We are excited to share our Year in Review as we look back on what the year offered for opportunity and growth. We head into 2022 with great momentum, an expanded Stage team, and an excellent outlook on Fund I performance.

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News
Stage

How to extend your runway. Indefinitely.

A friend (and founder) called and said he was in a tough spot. An investor had committed to a sizable round, signed subscription docs, and then…bailed. With 6-weeks of cash, my friend wanted to know his options. The company was close to breakeven, but he needed a short runway to get there.

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worklete
Acquisitions
Stage

Stage Fund Acquires Worklete, an AI Based Data Platform for Injury Prevention

Worklete, founded in 2015, is a mobile device enabled solution that provides injury prevention training for frontline workers anytime, anywhere. The Worklete platform has proven to reduce preventable musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries up to 50% with less than five minutes per day utilization. The Company counts well-known Fortune 500 brands as clients.

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Acquisitions
Stage

Stage Agrees to Acquire Needle, a Leader in Ecommerce Live Chat

Needle is a technology and service platform for e-commerce brands who utilize advocates for live chat and customer engagement. Founded in 2010, Needle has an impressive list of brands that use their service to provide a differentiated ecommerce chat experience including TaylorMade, Stuart Weitzman, Sonos, and Bare Necessities. 

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Archives
Stage

Coops & Feathers Add Amy Ranae Schwarz as VP of Sales and Marketing; Product Expansion Planned for 2022

Coops & Feathers is a U.S. based pet products company dedicated to improving the lives of animals and their pet parents. The Company offers unique chicken coops and functional accessories, as well as all-natural chicken treats, water additives and treatment sprays under its Healthy Hen product line. Coops & Feathers products can be found in big box retailers, eCommerce channels and major rural lifestyle retailers in North America.

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Archives
Stage

Stage Closes Fund to Acquire Early-Stage Companies Moving off the Venture Path

Stage’s playbook is a hybrid model integrating best practices from venture capital, private equity, and the venture studio model for shared services. With five portfolio companies already part of the Fund, early performance has dictated Stage to close Fund I early and begin the process of raising Fund II to scale their unique approach.

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stage_kristaMorgan
Archives
Stage

How a failure to raise turned me into a GP

We had what I thought was good traction, unique competitive positioning, tech to help us scale, and a strong team. With nearly two years of hindsight, I now know that it’s not that we weren’t good, it’s that we weren’t good enough to raise our Series B.

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Archives
Stage

Year in Review

As the door closes on a strange and unpredictable 2020 and the cramped hands of historians get a few moments rest – the world collectively breathes a sigh of relief and is cautiously hopeful. Now, in the quiet of the holiday season, which both eases the strain of the year and magnifies just how different our zoom-infused, socially distanced, sanitized world has become, we reflect.

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