Ways to fund a new venture

I was recently a guest lecturer at Cornell in a class for engineers and scientists with entrepreneurial aspirations. One of the topics that I covered was all the ways I've funded my businesses. Funding is consistently the #1 thing aspiring entrepreneurs ask me about. In business school, we learned a lot about venture capital and angel investors, but that's just one of many options.

Fund this idea

Here's the list:
  • Founder Investment
  • Business Plan Competitions
  • New York State Grants for Growth
  • Vendor Equity Compensation
  • Employee Equity Compensation
  • Employee Investment
  • Angel Investors
  • Venture Capital
  • Community Development Evergreen Funds
  • Federal Government SBIR
  • SBIR Matching
  • Employment Tax Credits
  • Empire Zone Tax Credits
  • Community Development Loans
  • Student Intern Programs
  • Credit Cards
  • Revenues

For awhile our investors referred to us as the magically self-funding company. By being creative with both our sources of funds and how we spent it, we were able to do a lot with a little.