I have the distinct pleasure of owning and advising many startups that have received “Terms Sheets” from would be investors. Some are good, some are bad, and then there are some have hidden catches that make you lose millions. It all depends on how badly the investor wants your stock or product. I’ll be the first to admit that not every company I have created was a home run on the first pitch, usually there are long innings and stretches you are not sure you will survive and a single or double is what keeps you in the game. But by far the best term sheet you will ever get is a Bill of Sale.
This is why Crowdfunding intrigued me at first. Through crowdfunding, not only do companies gain customers and drive some revenue, but it also engages a conversation around the product, drives awareness, and funds the next version. I initially reviewed Kickstarter, IndieGogo, Perti Dish and a few other crowdfunding sites to list FairCareMD on. The problem I sought to solve was that while FairCareMD has been visited by one in 1,000 American, it has failed to get on the radar for the other 999. Similarly, I needed a way to help my 400,000 searches find more doctors. We had already developed version 3, but to buy enough servers and man the phones as needed, a small capital raise seemed like a good idea. I had previously gone to Angels and VCs and gotten a great deal of “talk to us when you have more success” or “sorry, we just don’t know your sector well enough.” The bottom line, no one really wants to take a chance on a product or company until it is obviously successful. This is smart and right, otherwise their investment portfolios would depreciate rapidly. Not every company is facebook or Amazon. So I understand the situation, but I wasted a tremendous amount of time and neglected other key aspects of what I needed to do.
So in a small startup you have three choices of what to do with your far too limited time:
- Raise Capital
- Make Sales
- Make Product and Ship!
One of these is not revenue generating. All three are important but without # 2 the rest are irrelevant.
These three activities are also why CrowdFunding is so perfect for healthcare startups. The big companies that control most of the money in the healthcare system are so far removed from innovation that they can’t do it on their own very well. Aetna alone bought 1.5 Billion dollars worth of startups last year, for example.
Why can’t big companies innovate?
Several reasons: They are too big to “experiment” beyond a certain level. Second, it isn’t in their DNA. They may have an innovation division, but after a while even the most entrepreneurial leaders lose their innovator mojo. I know, it happened to me and I had to relearn entrepreneurship. Your brain gets stuck in a “thinking inside the box” mode and you need to drill out the hinges to escape, or do like my friend Jack did and make with the tin snips. Finally, innovation takes faith and it is hard to really believe in change if your business is not built on it. This is also why post-acquisition failures are common too. Money can’t but that kind of faith.
On the other hand, if you have a great idea and can engage with the public on it, then Money Can Be Invested on Faith and this makes all the difference. That is why we created MedStartr, to help bridge the gap between idea and commercial success. To help innovators get the best possible term sheets – Bills of Sale. Our partner program also enables large companies to back an idea and super-enable the entrepreneur to Fund Raise, Sell, and Ship all in one click after an hour or two of effort. The partner wins too since they buy access to the technology only on a successful crowdfund. For more information email The MedStartr Partner Program.
Give me a bill of sale any day over a term sheet. Give me enough of them and I never need to raise capital and can keep the vision going on the most important terms – those of my customers.
FairCareMD on MedStartr
You will now find the FairCareMD project on MedStartr. If you are a doctor or hospital or any allied health professionals and want more patients ready to pay a fair price for your work, we have several levels of rewards at a discount designed just for you.
If you are a Patient and need help saving 10-75% off your care using our system, we have an offer for you.
If you are a Payor and would like to try to determine how you could Pay less by letting patients Shop, we have an offer for you as well!
And if enough people support the project we will spin up few more servers and really get this site jumping. We are helping thousands per month, but we could be helping millions get great care for fair prices. If the crowd wants it, it will be done.