Kevin Stevens

Why We Invested in Ensemble

Today, I’m excited to announce that we are welcoming Ensemble Energy into the Intelis Capital portfolio to help them continue their mission to enable renewable energy sources to become more competitive by implementing more efficient operations and maintenance. Through their machine learning platform developed from...

Kevin Stevens

Death of the MVP

It’s possible I exaggerated a bit on the title above, while the Death of the MVP might be extreme, the days of the “minimum” (i.e. move fast and break things) approach to building high-growth software are long gone and we're now in the golden age...

Kevin Stevens

Marketplace Evolution

This thread on Twitter about the evolution of marketplaces is well worth a read to anyone working in that space.  Most of the low barrier, high-frequency markets have been built and marketplaces are now moving into managed services which are much more difficult. Managed marketplaces are...

Kevin Stevens

2019 Predictions for SE Innovation

2018 was the year big tech announced it was leaving the west coast and moving to the middle of the county the other coast.  Apple, Amazon, and Google all announced expansions of their campuses in other locations and since Austin was the only city to...

Kevin Stevens

Is Winter Coming? Does it Matter?

Recently, a good friend sent over the TechCrunch article "VC's Urge Their Portfolios to Prepare for Winter". Obviously, I'm new to this and as an operator have only known a bull market, but I suspect some market cyclicality will be introduced in the infancy of my...

Kevin Stevens

Why You?

If you ask most early-stage VCs their number one criteria for investing in a startup, the answer you will get is "team."  Even market first investors, like us, want to know why the team is best suited to tackle the problem. In a fundraising environment that is...

Kevin Stevens

Is “Peak Valley” Inevitable?

By now you’ve likely seen this week’s The Economist cover story entitled Peak Valley, which features quotes from Claire Haidar.  Claire is CEO of WNDYR, an Intelis Capital portfolio company. The article highlights a mixture of outrageous costs-of-living, poor local government, and high operating costs as...

Kevin Stevens

The Future of Work is Changing

Last week, Slack announced it had reached a deal with Atlassian to acquire its Slack competitors Hipchat and Stride.  First, it's important to note that as a part of this deal Atlassian made a small equity investment in Slack as well.  Imagine being so far ahead...

Kevin Stevens

Ethics in Flyover Ecosystems

Yesterday, I had the privilege of attending my first AUTM conference after being invited by Kerri Smith of the OWL Accelerator in Houston.  The topic of my quick 10-minute talk was "Ethics in Flyover Ecosystems" and it was part of a broader discussion on "Ethical...

Kevin Stevens

Accuracy is Good, Precision is Best

Directionally correct startups could be considered successful depending on the amount of capital raised, but ultimately fail to live up to their potential.  For most, the pull of the market ends early and the next phase of growth requires precise allocation of capital internally. Subsequently, growth expectations...

Kevin Stevens

Venture Ecosystems

Pitchbook has released a new study on startup ecosystems and a few things immediately stand out to me: 1) TX has anemic local capital per venture backed startup. It's WAY behind states with growing ecosystems like Tennessee, Utah, Michigan, Missouri, and Colorado. Some might argue the number...

Kevin Stevens

Thinking Big

I had the privilege this week of participating in a panel focused on developing startup ecosystems as part of the ITTN Cross Border Technology Summit in Suzhou, China. The spirit of the conference was to encourage entrepreneurs to think globally about their opportunity and build relationships...

Kevin Stevens

Our Investment in Wndyr

  Today, Intelis Capital is excited to announce our seed investment in Wndyr ( \ ˈwən-dər \), a company providing operational clarity to businesses by helping them become more efficient with the tech stack they already have in place. Socrates is credited with the quote "Wonder is the...

Kevin Stevens

Conviction and Discipline

Recently, the tweet below from Austen Allred has shown up on a few separate occasions in my feed. One of the responses was from Leo Polovets who is one of my favorite VC’s to follow both on Twitter and at his blog. Seed VC funds that...

Kevin Stevens

How Our Diligence Is a Signal of Partnership

When we first started thinking about starting Intelis, we found capital was readily available in the locations we wanted to focus. However, it was from angel investors who'd achieved massive success in other industries and most did not want the role of the investor of...

Kevin Stevens

Building a Reputation

One of the biggest challenges of building a venture capital firm is putting together a reputation from scratch.   When we first started Intelis, I naively believed that building a reputation would be as easy as blogging regularly and pointing people to the values statement we...

Kevin Stevens

Reference Check Potential Investors Like Employees

In October, we published The Operations of Fundraising (Part 1 and Part 2).  One small section of the series covered how to identify the best potential investors for your startup.  These posts covered the basics like: 1) Average check sizes 2) Industries of interest 3) Understanding fund lifecycles 4)...

Kevin Stevens

Bitcoin and Regulated Industries

Recently, Jonathan coined the phrase "the drag of orthodoxy" as it relates to regulated industries and their inability to quickly adopt new technologies even when they provide the best use cases.  Often, this is due to both the inability to implement new technology (easier to...

Kevin Stevens

The 3 Regulated Industries Poised for Disruption from Outside Silicon Valley

For decades, incumbents in industries such as energy, healthcare, and finance have enjoyed the luxury of being protected by regulation. This has provided a moat against competition and eliminated the need for innovation leaving behind inefficient businesses and frustrated consumers. However, customer expectations are changing rapidly...

Kevin Stevens

The Operations of Fundraising Part II

A few days ago, I published a post on the importance of setting up internal processes for fundraising.  Part II focuses on identifying the correct potential firms, interacting with them during the process, and finally closing the deal.  Let's jump in. Raising capital, like any sales...