In the News
December 1, 2013 – Washington Business Journal - The project has a legion of vocal supporters, including Mayor Vincent Gray and former AOL chief Steve Case. That’s not to say all of D.C. tech is lockstep behind it. In its short existence, 1776 has become the subject of both great hope and lingering doubts. Fulfilling its stated mission would mean a ground-up transformation of the startup scene.
December 3, 2013 - Washington Post - AOL co-founder Steve Case stressed the need for the United States to remain innovative Tuesday at an event hosted by the Aspen Institute in Washington. “We kind of led on the digital information revolution. We need to lead in the next revolution, otherwise our economy will start stagnating and we’ll never be able to solve some of the fiscal problems,” Case said. He spoke with optimism about American entrepreneurship and the economy, provided policy on immigration and innovation remains forward thinking. He cited Detroit as a warning of the dangers of complacency.
December 03, 2013 - BIC Alliance - During an Academy of Achievement interview, Steve Case, former CEO and chairman of America Online (AOL), once said this when referring to people, team and vision, "I’d say people are the most important [factor], and if you’ve really got the right people and you’ve got them working together as a team, whether it’s in business, whether it’s in science, whether it’s in politics, you can make a big difference. If you don’t have the right people, no matter how smart you are, no matter how good your idea is, you’re not going to get very far.” Most CertifiedSafety clients agree with Steve Case. They often say to CertifiedSafety managers, "The people you bring to our site are going to make the biggest impact on our project.”
December 3, 2013 - US News & World Report - Increasing access to government data can help tech startups disrupt outdated business models in the health and education industries and offer personalized services to consumers, said AOL Co-Founder Steve Case. The increased access to data about everyday life and trends made possible by cloud computing can help startups meet the consumer demand for personalized health care solutions, Case said on Tuesday during an event organized by the Aspen Institute and Bipartisan Policy Center think tanks in Washington, D.C. The education sector is also ripe for disruption by tech companies because that business system "has not really changed that much in 100 years," Case said.
December 2, 2013 - The Hill - Intel, the Aspen Institute and the Bipartisan Policy Center have teamed up for a Friday event about “the implications of the big data ‘information revolution’ for innovation, economic growth, privacy and security in our increasingly connected world.” The event will begin with a keynote interview including Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and former AOL CEO Steve Case. The rest of the day will include remarks by U.S. Deputy CTO Nick Sinai and former Rep. Jim Turner (D-Texas).
GUEST MENTOR Steve Case, chairman and CEO of Revolution and co-founder of AOL: Consider this scenario: I’m an entrepreneur with a promising concept for a business. I need to raise capital so that I can hire a team, develop my product and buy some equipment. What are my options? Banks won’t give me a loan because I have no revenue and no collateral. Venture capital firms consider my company “too early” to back. Friends and family may be willing to help – if they have cash to spare. But they have to be millionaires under federal law to be “accredited investors” – and I can’t appeal to the public at large for help.
National Journal - November 18, 2013 - The capital's economy is so much more than just the federal government. Deputy Mayor Victor Hoskins explains how that happened……For years, Maryland and Virginia just assumed they could pick off D.C. Well, they don't think that anymore. But that just means we need to figure out the next innovation to stay ahead of them. This year for the first time we went down to South by Southwest. It was so great because we had 35 area CEOs down there—from little companies, as small as 10 guys and gals, to people like Steve Case [the former CEO of AOL] and Michael Chasen, from Blackboard. We also did a tech meet-up and 550 people signed up. The mayor was there, Evan Burfield from 1776 was there
Financial Times - November 18, 2013 - Last month the Securities and Exchange Commission, the US regulator, put flesh on the bones of this part of the legislation by proposing rules that wouldgovern equity crowdfunding in practice. It is sensitive territory for the SEC. Even advocates of equity crowdfunding admit that the new financing method raises investor protection questions. But many supporters – such as Steve Case, the co-founder of AOL – see these as surmountable problems, while arguing that the deregulation could increase entrepreneurship. “Twenty years ago – when e-commerce first took off – the sceptics took a similar tack. They said people will never enter their credit card over the internet. Well, they were wrong. Companies like AOL, Amazon, eBay and others made it safe and over time earned consumers’ trust. The same will happen with crowdfunding,” Mr Case says.
MIT Technology Review - November 18, 2013 Case is no buzzword-dropping futurist. He’s practical, with a sharp eye for Main Street’s needs and, he says, “big ideas that are still small companies.” So it’s significant that his fund has bet most heavily so far on e-commerce startups. Its largest investment, $40 million, went to BigCommerce, a company that brings “Amazon-like capabilities” to any merchant. The pool of potential customers is huge: 95 percent of retail establishments in the U.S. consist of a single store. MIT Technology Review spoke with Case about his search for the next big idea in e-commerce.
Sport Business Daily November 13, 2013 - Leonsis said digital and online efficiencies today have made it a great time to be an entrepreneur because people can take traditional businesses and make them more efficient. His investment group, Revolution Growth, has invested in several online companies that are digital iterations of other businesses. Groupon is a company that digitized the coupon. Zip Car digitized the car rental business. And CustomInk, which just received a $40 million investment from Revolution Growth, is digitizing the apparel business. “It’s never been a better time to be an entrepreneur,” Leonsis said. “It’s never been a better time to start a company. The consumers are there. The devices are there. The tech is there. The capital is there. It’s just waiting for someone to launch these businesses.”
Washington Post - November 12, 2013 - Revolution Growth, the local venture fund known for its tech-savvy founders Steve Case and Ted Leonsis, is making a $40 million bet on a very low-tech investment: Northern Virginia-based T-shirt company CustomInk. CustomInk allows customers to design T-shirts for family reunions, small businesses, religious groups or student associations online. Picture 50 T-shirts emblazoned with “The Smith Family Reunion” or 150 baseball caps marking the local 5K fundraiser.
Tech Crunch - November 12, 2013 - Custom apparel company CustomInk just raised a whole lot of money, bringing on $40 million from Revolution Growth, the investment fund from Steve Case, Ted Leonsis, and Donn Davis. Along with the funding, Leonsis will join the company’s board as it seeks to expand and go after new opportunities. This isn’t your usual tech startup funding story. Founded nearly 14 years ago by a bunch of friends who had gone to school together, CustomInk was built to scale the world of custom printing on the Internet. Raising just $600,000 to get off the ground, it survived the first dot-com crash and, after some time, even flourished.