Hear What This Techstars Partner Learned Selling His Company & Running Techstars Austin

On this episode of Startup Slingshot Radio I have Jason Seats. Jason is currently a Partner at Techstars where he invests out of a $150M early-stage venture fund. In our time together, we dive into his experience building Slicehost, a company he sold to Rackspace, as well as his time running the Techstars Austin accelerator program. The knowledge Jason shares in this episode is sure to help you shortcut your path to startup success. Enjoy!

Have comments, questions, ideas, or feedback? I want to hear it. Tweet me at william_griggs.


Topics Covered In This Episode

  • Building Slicehost
    • What was Slicehost?
    • How were you able to land your early sales?
    • What’s one lesson you learned at Slicehost that has stuck with you?
    • Looking back, what’s one thing you wish you could change about the experience?
    • What’s the one story from your experience building Slicehost that you share most with early-stage founders?
    • What was your proudest moment?
    • Why sell?
    • How much did Rackspace end up paying for Slicehost?
    • What due diligence did you all do on Rackspace before agreeing to terms?
    • What’s the experience of an acquired founder inside a large company?
  • Running Techstars Austin
    • What’s the right stage to apply to Techstars?
    • What’s the biggest value add to Techstars participants for participating in the program?
    • Why Techstars over 500 Startups or Y Combinator?
    • What does Techstars look for in founding teams they accept into their program?
    • What can the members in our audience do/show to guarantee admission into the next Techstars cohort?
    • How do you advise founders to deal with mentor whiplash?
    • Who are a couple of the most helpful mentors in the ATX group of mentors? What do they do that’s so unique?
    • How do some mentors get it wrong? What should founders be wary of?
    • How can founders get the most out of their accelerator experience?
    • What does Techstars do to increase the likelihood of success for the companies in its programs?
    • What do early-stage startups struggle with most?
    • How do smart companies use the funding provided by Techstars?
    • What do companies inside Techstars need to prove to raise a Series A today?


Jason Seat’s Bio

jason-seats-potraitJason Seats is a partner at Techstar Ventures.

Prior to joining TechStars, Jason was a founder of Slicehost, an early cloud computing hosting company. In 2008 Slicehost was acquired by Rackspace and became the core for the initial Cloud Servers product. Jason continued on at Rackspace until 2010 as VP of software development for Rackspace Cloud, managing the cloud engineering teams.

Jason has a B.S. in Computer Science and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology at Saint Louis University.


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About William Griggs

William Griggs

William Griggs is a product and customer acquisition strategist who has helped numerous startups including companies backed by Andreessen Horowitz, FLOODGATE, & 500 Startups. In addition to his consulting work, he has written for Mashable, VentureBeat, & ReadWrite. You can check out his podcast on iTunes (The Startup Slingshot TV) or follow him on Twitter @william_griggs for Tweets chock-full of delicious knowledge nuggets.

In addition to everything tech startups, William loves breakfast tacos, dogs, short emails, and Amazon Prime. He currently resides in Austin, Texas with his beautiful wife Elizabeth.

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