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Hi, I’m Brad Feld, a managing director at the Foundry Group who lives in Boulder, Colorado. I invest in software and Internet companies around the US, run marathons and read a lot.

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Entrepreneurs – Don’t Be Afraid of GDP Growth Rate

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All the economics and newscasters like to talk about GDP Growth Rate (and its importance to life, the universe, and everything).  Whatever.  One of my very smart LPs sent me this the other day. 

gdpgrowth

He sent the attached note:

This is not meant to be exhaustive or to suggest any correlation – only a reminder that great companies continue to be created at shitty times.  It is, however, interesting to think about what attributes might lead companies founded in shitty times to go on to be successful.  How about: single-mindedness of purpose, frugality/capital efficiency, and more sweat than equity.

The list of companies started during periods of negative GDP Growth include Wang, TI, DEC, Fairchild, EDS, Compuserve, Intel, Atari, CA, Apple, Microsoft, Amdahl, Autodesk, Sun, Compaq, Cisco, 3Com, Genzyme, EMC, Amgen, Lotus, EA, Adobe, AOL, Dell, Cisco, and Network Appliance.  I know the startup story of many of them and it includes single-mindedness of purpose, frugality/capital efficiency, and more sweat than equity.

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