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« October 2010 | Main | January 2011 »

December 27, 2010

Consulting gigs to bootstrap your startup ?

Consulting services can be a good way to make some cash. But is it really a good way to bootstrap your startup? I would say the answer to that question is not a simple yes or no.

I come from a tech background and will speak about tech startups in general.

In theory the idea looks excellent. You have a great product idea. You need money to get that idea to the market. You do consulting to generate some cash that pays for the development and other expenses. I wish it was that simple in practice.

First off, it takes time and some money to find the right consulting projects. What I mean with "right" is a project where you have sufficient margin to generate some good money. Such projects are not easy to find esp if you are just starting in the industry. One way to find such projects is to do consulting in a particular niche. For eg, if you are in the tech consulting and an expert in ipad applications, you may want to find projects in ipad application development rather than focus on broader technologies such as Java.

Secondly, consulting eats your time. In a startup, founder's time is very critical resource. You need to be completely focused on your product development effort instead of troubleshooting client issues. May be hire a consultant to take care of the consulting projects? Well that's a dangerous path to tread into. Sooner than you realize, you have transformed into a fully service consulting company.

Also, investors consider consulting income as a distraction. Many of them would want you to completely stop consulting before they would even consider your business for funding.

This does not mean that consulting is not a way to bootstrap your startup. There are product companies that have used consulting gigs to bootstrap their product development effort. In fact a consulting company is exposed to lot of customer pain points and could be a platform for innovation.

Posted by manish at 06:47 PM | Comments (0)

« October 2010 | Main | January 2011 »

December 25, 2010 acquires

Recently announced that it was shutting down operations. I wondered why until I came across a US Federal court ruling giving permanent injunction against LimeWire. The ruling effectively means that LimeWire will shut down its operations and probably be liable for monetary damages.

For those who are not aware, Limewire is a P2P software which is usually used for sharing music. This may probably be the reason why was also shut down (its a subsidiary company of the parent that owns LimeWire).

The good news is that announced that it has acquired services including users & projects.

Posted by manish at 08:53 PM | Comments (0)

« October 2010 | Main | January 2011 »

December 17, 2010 shutting down?

I was surprised to receive a communication from few weeks back which stated that they are shutting down the site effective December 30, 2010. operated in a fiercely competitive space of Online freelancing and job posting website. While most of its features were modeled along the lines of, the USP of the website was very low fees. Probably that may be one reason for the shutdown. LimeExchange invested heavily in advertising and search engine optimization. They ranked pretty well for some of the generic keywords of the industry. The company didn't divulge any reasons for the shutdown. Pasted below is the communication received from the website

We regret to inform you that and all associated services will be shutting down effective on December 30, 2010. LimeExchange will stop accepting new projects and user registrations effective immediately. If you already have any open projects you will need to complete them and withdraw your earnings from wallets on or before December 24, 2010, as we will no longer be able to support your projects after that date. Any funds remaining in wallets will be released to Buyers following the December 24, 2010 cessation of services. We strongly urge all buyers and service providers to continue to honor the project agreements they have made with each other even after we have ended the LimeExchange service. To be clear, all LimeExchange services (including the Affiliate Program) will cease operation on December 30, 2010. Please feel free to reach us at for any help regarding withdrawals, escrows , project status and payments.

Posted by manish at 08:51 PM | Comments (0)