The “Startup Genome Report” released this week from seed accelerator blackbox collected data from 650+ startups to analyze factors that led to a company’s  success or failure.  I’m adding it to my recommended must-read list for early stage entrepreneurs.  The authors (Max Marmer, Bjoern Lasse Hermann and Ron Berman) have summarized 14 indicators of success and have made the full report available for download here (in return for providing some basic information).  It’s great to have a relatively large, current data set, rather than the more limited view we each get, in our roles as service providers to startups, founders, VCs, etc., from our companies, clients and portfolio investments.  A few of the findings that struck me as interesting:

  • Premature scaling is the most common reason for startups to perform poorly.
  • Founders significantly overestimate the value of IP before product market fit.
  • Startups need 2-3 times longer to validate their market than most founders expect.

7 signs of failure for Internet startups, a short piece by Bjoern Lasse Hermann, co-founder of blackbox highlights some of the study’s results.  Some dramatic differences show up in a couple of categories:

  • Founders who do not work full time on their startups raise only a tiny fraction of the money that full time founders do, and
  • Startups that track their metrics and incorporate feedback from customers, have 400% more users.

You can read about the study’s methodology in a post by Ron Berman on his blog Startup Malfunction.