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Startup Stages: Idea to Revenue

Our focus is on teams that are bootstrapping. We typically see them go through five distinct stages of evolution:  idea and team formation, open for business, early customers, finding a niche, and scaling up.

Formation ICON The Idea and Team Formation stage starts with one or more ideas and may end with a team formed around a working consensus on how to evaluate the technical and market feasibility of the idea(s).
Open for Business ICON In the Open for Business stage you have a business ownership structure, and you have the necessary documents and tools in place to transact business: e.g. business license, Federal Tax ID, software license, etc…
Early Customers ICON Early Customer stage is where you develop your first customers. First sales are generally to friends who know and trust you. These customers can act as a reference for future customers.
Niche ICON The next stage, Find Your Niche, is where you find are core set of customers and establish your first niche. These core customers reference each others buy decisions and act as useful references for additional customers.
Scaling Up ICON In the Scaling Up stage you grow a sustainable business by growing your core customer base and expanding into new niches. Cash flow has become more stable and predictable. You need to expand from a small team of generalists to a collection of specialists.
This is Sean Murphy for SKMurphy, Inc.  I want to talk to you about our startup stages model and understanding that risk reducing milestones that separate each stage.We break the startup journey into five stages.  In each stage you will explore different options and converge on a key risk reducing milestone. Starting from idea or formation, moving through open for business, early customers, finding your niche,  and scaling up.
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