Sequoia Capital’s Elements of Sustainable Companies

| Apr 3, 2008 | comment Leave a comment

Sequoia Capital, one of the most important venture firms that funded startups like Apple, Google, Yahoo, Cisco Systems, Oracle, PayPal and YouTube, recently released a list of principles and key drivers of success for any startup aiming to make their business successful and build a sustainable, enduring company out of it.

Their list goes as follows:

Clarity of Purpose: Summarize the company’s business on the back of a business card.
Large Markets: Address existing markets poised for rapid growth or change. A market on the path to a $1B potential allows for error and time for real margins to develop.
Rich Customers: Target customers who will move fast and pay a premium for a unique offering.
Focus: Customers will only buy a simple product with a singular value proposition.
Pain Killers: Pick the one thing that is of burning importance to the customer then delight them with a compelling solution.
Think Differently: Constantly challenge conventional wisdom. Take the contrarian route. Create novel solutions. Outwit the competition.
Team DNA: A company’s DNA is set in the first 90 days. All team members are the smartest or most clever in their domain. “A” level founders attract an “A” level team.
Agility: Stealth and speed will usually help beat-out large companies.
Frugality: Focus spending on what’s critical. Spend only on the priorities and maximize profitability.
Inferno: Start with only a little money. It forces discipline and focus. A huge market with customers yearning for a product developed by great engineers requires very little firepower.

# Sequoia Capital: Elements of Sustainable Companies

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