Articles by GroundControl

Innovation Ecosystem
How we co-create corporate startups

Creating and running startups as part of a corporate is hard. It’s because the whole organization of a corporate is heavily optimized on execution. And that is how it is supposed to be! Startups however are searching. Searching for a business model that works and can only start executing when they’ve found that working model. […]


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Innovation Ecosystem
The 24-month journey to product/market fit

How long does it usually take to go through all four phases and what type of investment fits every stage?


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Innovation Investments
Investment should not be the single goal of a founder

“-Can you tell me what you would look for in a startup so I can properly build my MVP?” I am at a Meetup where investors (VC’s mostly) sit around the table with Saas startups. Others are nodding at this question, it is the thing they want to know as well. “-So what do you […]


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Lean Startup
How to turn your risky assumptions into Experiments

Once you have filled in your NEXT Canvas, you are stuck with a pile of stickies filled with assumptions. Do they all need to be tested? Is every single one of them risky? Where do I start?! 1. Determine the impact and evidence of each assumption There are a couple of tools that can help […]


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Lean Startup
Why we stopped building MVP’s

At NEXT we decided to drop the word MVP and use solution experiment, prototype, or first version instead.


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Innovation Investments
Generating change by focussing on revenue instead of the next funding round

Photo credits; Marcos Ojeda As we have mentioned before, one of the beliefs in our investment thesis is: “The time of the unicorn is over. We need revenue-driven and problem-solving startups.” Why is this such an important part of our thesis? The system as it is right now, we feel, is broken. VC’s are steering startups […]


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Innovation Investments
The four criteria we select startups on

At NEXT Amsterdam we believe in helping others. Not only startup founders but also our fellow (informal) investors. That is why we are sharing our knowledge and experience in a series of blog posts about how and why we invest. Two weeks ago we wrote about the investment thesis as the basis of every investment […]


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Innovation Investments
Invest with courage

This is Part 2 of our Investing series. There is often a lot of debate about choices investors make. “Why on earth did Investor X invest in Startup Y?” As an investor, you have to make bold choices. Every investment should have the potential to become really big, otherwise, you will never make up for […]


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Lean Startup
How to apply Agile to validate business models: the Lean Sprint

Most startups are familiar with agile development sprints of 1 or 2 weeks. They try to plan work that ‘belongs’ together and release a new version either at the end of the sprint or when the work is done. That structure works pretty well and helps to build a flow into your company. We used […]


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Measuring Innovation Teams
A deep dive at getting Mixpanel right

Last weekend Diego Menchaca, founder of Teamscope and apparently also a big fan of our blog posts, proposed that I should write a blog post about Mixpanel. “Most blog posts tell what to track on Mixpanel, but it would be great to know what’s your approach when defining events and properties.” We love Mixpanel at […]


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Innovation Practice
Braintrust: a format for powerful peer-to-peer mentoring

For three years in a row, the most valued session during the Rockstart Accelerator programs has been the Braintrust. Esther introduced it as Lean Mentor checkins, based on Salim Virani‘s Braintrust model, but it has slowly evolved in much more and is now a standard part of our proven Lean Startup curriculum. What is a […]


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Measuring Innovation Teams
The Early Adopter from an Analytics perspective

Yesterday we had the first introductory session with a potential portfolio company and tried once again to explain why it is so important to focus first on a clear early adopter. We often compare the early adopter with a person who fell of his bike (we’re from Amsterdam after all) and broke his arm. His […]


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