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Fundraising Now? Remember Morality Impacts Valuation – ReadWrite

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Fundraising Now? Remember Morality Impacts Valuation - ReadWrite


Startup founders are trying to figure out how to fundraise through a pandemic and economic crash. New talk of capital efficiency is gratifying, but there was another lesson from pre-COVID-19 valuation struggles. Morality matters.

Venture capitalists and early-stage investors have told all of us, founders are critical to a startup’s valuation.

These investors also tell you the founder’s role cuts both ways. As a unicorn approaches an exit, the balance sheet needs to make sense. But importantly, headlines around WeWork, Uber, and Juul that may be fading into memory too fast were a signal.

These companies were a signal for founders and their early investors to reexamine their understanding of morality and valuation.

“Morality” is it too strong a word?

Most of us almost never use the word morality when talking about entrepreneurialism. It is a strong word driving deep into what’s in the soul, and publicly at least we work to avoid judging others. Like many of us, I’d rather focus on my own actions, and associate with others who I can learn from, and who I admire.

That’s probably why we don’t hear morality used often at business events. It’s a high stakes word. But we do hear it quietly standing behind other words we use more frequently, like reputation, purpose, brand, optics and litigation risk.

WeWork’s founder was been accused of self-dealing, which in turn has thrown the company’s IPO into question. Investors saw the enterprise’s nearly $50 billion valuation eroded right as they were headed to the public markets.

The founder stepped aside. Juul and its $38 billion valuation came under the spotlight after deaths and illnesses connected with vaping. Juul’s founder resigned.

Uber is still living down reports of its founder’s past behavior, and California pushed to treat drivers like full-time employees and take on the associated costs.

When the pandemic finally evolves into something more predictable, we can only wait for cannabis startups to find their way back into the news.

Whether we believe a company is moral, or not, actually matters. As Marie Ekeland, founder of venture capital firm Daphni has suggested, it matters if a company represents what you want the future to look like. Alternatively, if a company is seen as faking it, tremendous value can evaporate. The conversation boils down further to whether the leaders of these companies can be trusted.

What people say behind your back

Amanda Hesser, the founder of Food52, has talked about this saying when we think about reputation, it’s kind of how people speak about you when you’re not in the room. Columbia University professor Sheena Iyengar has called out authenticity as being at the root of whether a customer, partner, or investor will do business with you.

Iyengar suggests if you know who you are, and why you want to do what you’re doing, then you’re better at explaining it, and also you’re better at being more concrete about what choices need to be made and what you’re looking to do when you make each choice.

These ideas are right. Will people vouch for your character based on what they have seen of your actions. Do they believe you are transparent about your motivations and consistent in honoring what’s at your core?

A cynic can point to the fact that despite headline-grabbing behavior at Uber, the company continues.

Juul got far before events caught up with it. WeWork still does not appear on the verge of folding. The leaders who have caught the spotlight, have not seen their wallets hurt in any substantial way that we can see.

That may be true.

But what’s the logical conclusion of that lesson? Maybe it doesn’t hurt that much to push the line on ethical questions after all. In fact, the founders involved could argue, as could investors, that by pushing the line when others weren’t willing, much was gained. And the founders are only martyrs for the investors they made money for. And they are compensated for their troubles after stepping down.

This may also be true… up to a point.

Investors step in

Investors balking at companies right now, that appear to be morally compromised are not wrong, and there is an alternative. Companies that prompt employees to speak up about ethical lapses tend to be more profitable. Companies ranked by Ethisphere as among the most ethical, outperform the large-cap sector over five years by more than 14 percent.

As Jerome Dodson of Parnassus Investments, Jane Gladstone of Evercore, Julie Gorte of Pax World Funds and others have suggested — there’s tons of research that show companies that care about gender, equality, who care about diversity.

These companies care about the environment and they actually perform better. Because the research is so compelling, the largest investors, BlackRock, Vanguard, State Street, who are all the stewards of index funds — now represent the top three holders of almost every company. These companies have now started voting in sync with that because that’s just what’s best for their shareholders.

Fintech steps up

There are fintech companies that are especially well equipped to help best practices and morality rise to the top. I’ve had the chance to work with many of them to see it firsthand.

Harmonate, based in San Jose has developed private fund data operations tailored to the complexities of tracking social impact investing. One of their investors, JTC Group has developed a specialty in this arena through a recent acquisition.

Trust also comes into play supporting bankers who are now moving vast amounts of stimulus funds out to communities. They are trying to avoid getting it into the wrong hands. Fraudsters, organized crime, and others are stepping up to the trough.

Banks need to weed them out but do so in a manner that does not hurt small businesses. Enterprise AI firm Symphony AyasdiAI has developed a capability to reduce trust-eroding false positives to ensure the money that can have a social impact doesn’t get siphoned away or the wrong person is pilloried.

Property technology company Grace Hill in South Carolina has refined digital training for multifamily housing teams to not just make it through the COVID-19 pandemic with health intact — but by building better relationships with renters.

The action includes training in the full range of customer service skills that bring in revenue. And that includes a better understanding of how to cut out discrimination, sexual harassment, and biases that can destroy the reputation and moral purpose.

Impact

We all have been talking about impact investing for some time. And maybe we’ve been talking about it for so long that we’ve stopped taking it too seriously. Founders building their venture from the ground up, and the venture capitalists that back them as angels and seed investors, should not pay lip service to reputation, brand, or morals.

Economics should not be the driver for morality… but if that’s what it takes. We live in an age where powerful people appear to get away with trying to obscure the truth. But that can be ripped out into the open more than you expect. Bank on it.

Chris Gale

Founder

Chris is the founder of enterprise technology advisory and communications firm Gale Strategies. He’s an integrated communications marketer helping growing businesses and multinationals manage critical issues and tell their story to investors, customers, and consumers.

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Everyday Investors Believe Wall Street is Rigged: How One Man Plans to Change the System – ReadWrite

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Deanna Ritchie


The Occupy Wall Street movement wasn’t the first time economic inequality made the news. But it did call more attention to the disparities in the financial system. The Occupy movement also highlighted how the structure of that system is set up to benefit those who run it. Even though more people make up the 99% or “Main Street,” it’s the 1% who continue to pull ahead.

Delphia, an investment startup founded in 2018, wants to change that system. Through its investment model, which is based on an algorithm that gets smarter the more data it consumes, Delphia hopes to make the stock market work for the everyday investor.

      Delphia’s goal, says CEO Andrew Peek, is to change the system so it can work for everyone.

“To change the system so it can work for everyone” is a statement that may sound overly idealistic and too much like the lofty goal that Occupy Wall Street wasn’t able to fully realize. But Delphia is betting on the combined power of its AI-driven algorithm and the voluntary participation of frustrated Main Street investors. The investment firm hopes to bring fairness back to the market through the concepts of quantitative investing and collective data.

Why Delphia is Different — Changing the System

When most people want to invest, they put money in a 401(k), mutual fund, a money market fund, treasury bonds, or a CD. But Peek describes the world of investing as a simple decision tree. In the first place — a would-be investor needs to decide who is making the investment decisions — them or an investment manager.

No matter what the investor decides, Main Street investors have to place their trust in the data that’s available to them or to the decisions of that manager. Those who go it alone rely on an understanding of how financial markets and investments work. In a lot of cases, this understanding involves an analysis of a stock’s (or fund’s) key performance indicators.

The return profile of a stock or fund can either be in or out of alignment with a person’s investment goals and risk tolerance. Peek argues that investors who are content with average returns should pay the least amount possible to get those returns by using index funds. But investors who want above-average returns have two investment styles to choose from.

Two Styles of Investing

According to Peek, those two styles are fundamental and quantitative investing. Fundamental investing involves deep research on a handful of stocks while using machines to parse terabytes of data. The data can then be used to take small positions in hundreds or even thousands of stocks.

Use an Algorithm

Delphia takes the latter approach using an algorithm developed by its CIO (Chief Investment Officer) Jonathan Briggs, and Head of Research, Emre Konukoglu.

Quantitative Investing from a Mobile App

Delphia believes that this is the first time retail investors have access to quantitative investing from a mobile app. The firm delivers a 200-stock portfolio yet doesn’t charge investors any fees. Instead, it asks everyone to commit to sharing their data to makeDelphia’ss AI smarter.

Voluntary Participation

The value of the stock market is a function of speculation on the part of investors, and the actual performance of the companies within it. Since performance is only revealed every three months, big data has made its way into the speculation side of the equation as investors estimate the actual performance.

Consumers Access to Data

A lot of the data used to estimate company performance belongs to consumers. It can be anything from their purchasing behaviors and financial transactions, to the ways people engage with companies on social media. All of this data can fuel speculation about whether a stock will go up or down.

However, much of the data that can help determine a stock’s value is not available to retail investors. They don’t see where that information is coming from, who controls or is selling it, or even how it’s being used.

Buying Consumer Personal Data

Despite increased stock market investing by Main Street, institutional investors still exercise control over the majority of the market. And that means hedge funds, whom these institutions invest with, have deeper pockets which allow them to buy consumer data and use it to their advantage.”  “Believe it or not,” Peek says, “Delphia’s model was actually inspired by the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

The company’s co-founders recognized the power of personal data, but they were concerned about how the world was weaponizing it against unsuspecting people. So Delphia’s investment model came from the idea of helping people use their personal data to their own advantage instead of to the benefit of WallStreet’ss elite.

The co-founders wanted to build a product that would let people safely benefit from their data, so they created an investment strategy to improve consumer data over time.

You Choose How Your Data is Used

People who choose to make investments through Delphia’s model agree to share their data to help the companys’ algorithm make better predictions.

This data comes from consumers’ social media accounts and credit cards, but investors can choose which information to share. Delphia’s algorithm uses terabytes of data to make its investment decisions.

By measuring things like changes in a company’s sales, the algorithm can predict increases or decreases in a stock’s value. The hope is that data volunteered from Delphia’s own investor base, will help the artificial intelligence behind the algorithm get an earlier read on a company’s performance before it is publicly announced.

Peek saysDelphia’ss vision is to use voluntarily shared data to improve one’s investment returns, thus allowing more people to achieve financial prosperity.

The Future Delphia’s Investment Strategy

Over the past year, Delphia launched its first true quantitative investment strategy, and thus far, 3,000 people have consented to contribute their data, while over 4,000 investment accounts have been opened.

Currently, the strategy achieves its returns using commercially available data. However, as the number of people contributing data to Delphia continues to grow, the firm will eventually rely on a blend of data it buys and data its investors freely contribute.

Enhance Individual Returns

As for the immediate future, Peek envisions contributions that will allow Delphia to develop a proprietary data set to enhance people’s returns further. One way the company plans to encourage those data contributions is through its Data Dividend Rewards Program. The DDRP Rewards Program rewards investors with a chance to win cash each week in exchange for helping Delphia train its AI.

If Delphia’s predictions are correct, the world of investing will shift away from the purchase of consumer data and the absence of informed consumer consent.

On its website, Delphia boldly predicts that hedge funds and corporations will not be able to buy consumer data without consent as soon as 2024. Instead, Corporate America will need to reach out to consumers and directly make the ask. Sound familiar? It’s exactly what Delphia is already busy doing.

To help you better understand our processes — please read our Terms of Service at https://delphia.com/legal

Image Credit: Никита Семехин; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

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Clubhouse Clone audio based app development

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Clubhouse Clone App


All social media apps have formed their own identities, and let’s face the truth: The apps all feel the same at this point. This led to the birth of a new app designed solely to break the wheel and reinvent it.

The Clubhouse is a social media app that lets users finally experience a breath of fresh air in the social media app market. By bearing in mind to differ from the rest, the app focuses on all aspects of social media interaction that haven’t been implemented in the way it was meant to be. The Clubhouse has everything it needs to keep users curious about it, and we’ll discuss what exactly makes it pop out from the dull, monotonous media market.

What is Clubhouse?

Clubhouse, in simple terms, is an exclusive audio-based social media app (appdupedotcom). The app focuses on audio-based interaction and content creation that is available to a very selective audience. The platform allows users to participate in chat rooms, join or host in a new room of their liking.

The apps’ users have to be invited by their contacts. This feature might initially pose a problem, but it promotes exclusivity for the app. The app has over 8 million downloads, and the number continues to increase, which is surprising considering the app is invite-only. Let’s understand how the app became so popular in such a short period.

Why is Clubhouse turning heads?

The main reasons why Clubhouse got popular will be its exclusivity and audio content support implementation. The app is currently available only on iOS, so only Apple users have access to the app, further signifying its exclusivity. In addition, the app focuses on the immediate availability of audio content hosted that will be difficult or impossible to access later on. So the factor of urgency makes users stay on the app so that users won’t miss anything of value.

Several influencers and experts of various industries have made the app much more rewarding to use. In addition, the value of tech communities and start-ups from where such influencers arise would become famous and successful due to the exposure. It’s a win-win for both the general users of Clubhouse and the influencers alike.

How to use Clubhouse?

The app only runs on the iOS platform, so it is necessary to have an Apple device to download the app. Once the user downloads the app, they have two options to gain access to the app.

To register on the app, users have two options:

An existing Clubhouse user has to invite another Apple user to register to the app. Besides the new user feeling special about their invitation to an elite Club, the app also gains users interested in different content, further diversifying the user base and influencing content creators to be unique.

The waiting list is for new user to register their username and wait until their friends who use Apple devices are notified. Then, any of the contacts can add them to the Clubhouse from there.

After registering, the user can either join an ongoing room or host their room. For example, several influencers would be hosting rooms relevant to their niche, which users can join, but will be muted through the duration of the host’s audio conference or stream.

  • The app will direct users to a “Hallway,” which is the app’s main feed. This section contains real-time conversations that are accessible until the host ends the session.
  • The app will have a search bar that allows users to find the influencers they want to listen to.
  • The calendar will contain all upcoming events and important dates marked. The user can freely edit and schedule it according to their needs.
  • The room function is where the main event of all audio streams is. The host can make the event as exclusive as they want it to be, whether for followers only or the public.
  • Users can invite their friends online if they want to with the invite option.

How to use Clubhouse Clone

How Clubhouse slowly becomes a powerhouse of social media platforms

The Clubhouse was launched in May 2020, during the strictest lockdown protocols that were followed worldwide. The app started on one platform, with an invite-only social media platform. So it’s surprising that the app has farmed over 8 million users almost one year later and is still operating only on one platform, iOS. This stat is a remarkable feat no matter the app’s nature, especially an audio-centric social media app.

With the growing number of mobile social media users, this number will grow in the upcoming months and hold its own identity as the best audio-based social media platform, unless you have a better implementation and plan for a similar app idea.

Clubhouse showing other social media apps how it’s done

The massive success of Clubhouse did not go unnoticed. That is an understatement, as it got even the social media industry leaders like Zuckerberg interested in it. As a result, the Facebook CEO is implementing some features of Clubhouse into Facebook and Instagram as well. Likewise, Twitter followed Zuckerberg’s lead to a plan to incorporate some elements of Clubhouse as it would make its platform more diverse and fun.

Instagram has now added live streaming features with up to three more people, which was earlier only 1. This addition opens up a new realm of possibilities for influencers to gain a wider audience and host interactive sessions with fans.

Twitter has created a “Twitter space” feature that allows users to join an ongoing discussion, much like the rooms in Clubhouse. It will also contain hand gestures like raising hands, applauding, and more. It is no doubt that Clubhouse is the new standard of social media interaction, and it has nearly no competition in its field.

Steps to get started on your Clubhouse Clone

To any app development and business, there need to be proper measures for the app not to be another trend that dies off.

There are more than a few factors to figure out before stepping into development. First, the app that will be developed needs to cater to the audience that will enjoy using it. Finding the target audience, the demographic, and how they will interact with the app is crucial before further steps are taken towards developing the app.

Surveys, forms, focus groups, etc., can be used to find out these details.

The app can be free to use or be pay-to-use. While almost all social media is free to use, it is entirely acceptable to charge a fee for using the app. The app can also earn through advertisements.

The right team cuts costs and offers a pleasant experience while working with them and saving time. The business owner can be suggestive of changes while the process is going on, and the results will be worth the time and money invested in

Features of Clubhouse clone app

The Clubhouse clone app contains several immersive features designed to captivate users and make them spend more time on the app. Here are some of the features of the Clubhouse clone script:

  1. Rooms
  2. Hallway
  3. Clubs
  4. Invitation
  5. Upcoming events
  6. Search
  7. Notifications
  8. User profiles

Features of Clubhouse Clone

The boons of an audio-based social media platform

Audio-based social media has an increased percentage of traffic that is more inclined to continue using the app’s service.

  • Maximized user engagement

Users can stay more engaged and involved in the app, as the rooms, once closed, won’t be available to visit again. In addition, the sessions are all real-time, so users will feel missing out if they are not on the app for too long.

Users can connect with other users more efficiently with fewer fingers, images, GIFs, etc. In addition, people can talk to each other instead of text, opening more opportunities for businesses, influencers, and industry professionals.

With an audio-centric platform and invite-only features, users will feel more sophisticated when part of the app. In addition, the app will feel more elite and exclusive due to interacting with influencers directly, rather than feeling left out when watching them through a screen.

How to develop the perfect Clubhouse Clone app for your business?

Partnering with a company or team

This is the simplest method, but it costs relatively more time and effort than other ways of building your app. The company appoints a team of developers to work on your project, which will be discussed in detail, and go through these five iterations of development until it is ready to take over the market:

  • Testing and deployment
  • Maintenance and enhancement

Clone script

Buying a clone app is the fastest and most often the best course of action to build an app for your business. There are brilliant white-label apps that pack all the bells and whistles of the original app, and more features are added and customized to your liking. There are clone app solutions that are highly robust, versatile, and dependable for your business needs.

Hiring a team from scratch

This method costs more time and resources and requires the business owner to play the project manager’s role until the app is ready. Every aspect of the app, such as technology stack, scalability, and features, will be developed by the team from the ground up. The business/app owner covers running and maintaining the servers, testing, and additional costs.

The advantages would include the owner keeping track of progress, staying up to date with the project details, and rectifying mistakes quickly.

How much would it cost to develop a Clubhouse Clone?

The cost of app development is generally high under normal circumstances. Still, some factors heavily influence the cost of development, and they can be researched and reduced to an extent based on the options available. Here are some factors to consider to reduce the cost without compromising on the quality of the app build.

  • Team location and size
  • Experience of team
  • Technology stack
  • Features to be added
  • Platforms it will run on

Wrapping up,

The Clubhouse has only started its journey in the social media game. The app will continue to grow, ushering the new field of audio-based social media to grow more, inviting new competition. So create your Clubhouse clone app that rivals the originals in functionality and performance.

Get ahead of the curve, take advantage of the full customization options with the Clubhouse clone script, and be the industry’s next face-or voice.

Image Credit: All images provided by the author; Thank you!

Jennifer Atkinson

Jennifer Atkinson

Chief Technical Writer

Jennifer is an America-based chief technical writer at Appdupe, who has got the buzz of every faddish development in the technology and app development sector. Her verdict about presenting quick-witted solutions to the current issues and being enigmatic about future trends has led her to become the wizard in her field.

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Check a Cars History before Handing Over Your Hard Earned Cash – ReadWrite

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Debraj Chatterjee


Purchasing a second-hand car can either give you a complete nightmare or a fantastic experience. However, it depends on your knowledge when you sign the deal or offer your hard-earned money to the car seller.

Many used car organizations are well-known in Australia. But there are still a few that will be delighted to sell you slightly fewer cars than you negotiate for. In reality, some individual sellers and car dealers have no car history reports. Also, they have no knowledge about the issues with cars when they provide them to you.

If you seek to shop for a used car and want to feel satisfied with your purchase, this blog is just for you. This blog discusses how to check a used car’s history before purchasing it with the help of car history reports.

The specialist motoring websites always help car buyers get details and understand how essential it is to revs check car history. A lot of issues arrive when buyers do not follow the appropriate process and ultimately regret it.

Purchasing a second-hand car can be exciting as well. At the same time, it could be a costly deal for you if you don’t go for the background checks. So let’s discuss how to revs check the accurate car history reports before investing your hard-earned money!

Purchasing a Second-Hand Car

When it comes to purchasing a second-hand car, you should understand that it has a history. Sometimes this history can be good also, such as no accident, dealer-only service, and low mileage history. If you get such a used car, this will be a great deal for you to purchase a brand new car.

However, not always the same thing happens with a second-hand vehicle that is affordable for anyone. In case you are purchasing a car privately, you only need to depend on the details the seller gives you. Over the years, this has changed significantly, particularly with the launch of Revs check and PPSR search for cars across Australia.

This government-given information helps you make the right decisions about car buying as you can access the appropriate data before investing your hard-earned cash.

Why Should You Know the Real History of a Second-Hand Car?

Will you ever purchase a new device without reviewing its details and specifications? Won’t you check its online reviews so you can have all the details before deciding the final choice? So, if you go through this tedious process to buy something exclusively new, why not go for the same method while purchasing a second-hand product?

Just like how you conduct a study on a product online, ask questions and review its specs before purchasing, you need to follow the same process while purchasing a used car. You should get as much precise info on the used car as you want, just like you get lots of details while buying a new car.

And doing this process is not difficult because you have many online portals to get the answers you require to know the history of a used car.

Which Car History Details are Essential to Know?

The Revs check car history reports contain all the necessary details you need to know before purchasing a used car. And if you receive this information from an official online portal in Australia, you know that you will get the best information to make a comprehensive decision.

Let’s have a look at some details that come from looking into a used car’s history!

1. Finance Check

One of the issues related to purchasing a second-hand car is that there may be a loan attached to it. Hence, if you were to buy the vehicle, the loan would come alongside it, and you would need to return the vehicle to the lender or pay off the outstanding. So, before getting its possession, confirm whether it has been paid off or not.

2. Write-Off Check

A check also unveils whether a vehicle has faced an accident before. Sometimes a car that has been considered a write-off at that point wrongfully goes on to be fixed. The car can often be repaired and written off because it costs more to fix than its actual value. However, sometimes the vehicle’s condition is too bad to think about fixing and could even be hazardous if it was on the road again, yet they can appear on the web.

Car history reports tell you that the car you will purchase is safe. So, it is worth paying a nominal fee that the check demands.

3. Stolen Status

Knowing whether you are buying a stolen car is also the essential information to have before deciding. Every year, many vehicles are reported stolen, and often they are found for sale online. If you check the car history reports before taking over the car ownership, you can be sure that you have signed the right deal.

4. Vehicle Identification Number

To check a car’s history, you need the vehicle identification number. This is found behind the windscreen, on the chassis of the car, and the car body. The seller must permit checking this number. Do not forget to check this to ensure that it hasn’t been tampered with and must match the documentation.

5. Manufacturing Status

Car history reports also help you find the model, manufacturing, and similar types of cars. Moreover, you can find the cars in similar shades at the current date and every color available earlier. Also, you will get to know the date of manufacturing and registration of the car and how many owners it has had previously.

To get car history reports online, you can visit the revscheckreport dotcom online portal that is affordable for anyone. By checking car data, you can get all the essential info and make a detailed decision on car buying.

Furthermore, most used cars that are advertised online are completely legal and authentic. So you can negotiate with the price; however, some indecent people may try to make fun of you. This is why it is essential to check car history reports online on your own.

How Will You Get the Real Car History Reports?

A PPSR search gives you access to govt collected information in one place. This search helps car buyers receive all the necessary details discussed above to know the car before buying. Sometimes, this detail is available via official government channels also.

The revs check online portal gathers all cars in Australia with a VIN (Vehicle Identification Number). You can collect this information from different registries and access it at an affordable cost. Then, you can use this data.

Suppose you are looking for easy-to-read and already available car history reports that are affordable for anyone and an official government-issued PPSR certificate. In that case, you must run a PPSR search through REVS Check Report.

Are You Ready for Your Car History Reports?

Getting car history reports is now easier than ever. You can go online with the REVS Check Report website and check the history of any second-hand car in Australia. This will genuinely help you invest your hard-earned money in the right product.

Image Credit: Provided by the author; Thank you!

Debraj Chatterjee

Debraj is a Founder of Cryptonidea, Coinvouge, CryptonBinary blog Services and oversees strategic, operational, and invest Peng aspects of the company’s wide-ranging digital content & digital revenue activities.

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