3 Things You Should Know About Small Business: August 23
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- What's happening in small business today?
1. Is venture capital hitting roadblocks? Twenty-five year venture capital veteran Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures, who has backed Twitter, Zynga(ZNGA) , Kickstarter and Foursquare, among other companies, says venture capital funds have gotten too big these days.
In an interview with Technology Review, Wilson expresses concerns about the industry, starting with the lack of returns generated compared to the 1990s. He questions the value the funds generate for society these days. Wilson says the biggest issue facing the VC industry is trouble raising money because of the "mediocre" returns.
That being said, Wilson says there is too much money sitting in too few hands.
"So when six white guys in suits control two and a half billion dollars, that's not a good thing. Instead of being allocated just to one firm, it would be better if that two and a half billion dollars was allocated to 25 firms at $100 million each. It would lead to more diversity or people trying more things: data sciences, urban sciences, transportation, energy, materials science, and many others," Wilson says, according to a transcript of the interview.
2. Multi-unit franchisee has lofty goals. There is an increasing amount of multi-unit franchising in the quick-service industry, but one Charley's Grilled Subs franchisee wants to go even further by owning 10% of the company's entire system, a rarity in the franchising world, says QSR Magazine.
Franchisee Mario Contreras already is the company's largest unit owner. He has 26 stores in the U.S., Panama, Venezuela and the Dominican Republic. Through the stores he employs 400 employees and nine of his own corporate staff members.
Contreras' lofty goal of reaching 10% of the system's units means he plans to open 300 more Charley's locations.
And corporate headquarters is supporting him.
The International Franchise Association says an ambitious franchisee such as Contreras is good for the company. Executives can rely on these franchisees to help test new products, store designs or marketing strategies.