• Profile picture of Lighthouse Labs

    Lighthouse Labs is a non-profit, mentor-driven startup acceleration program connecting promising founders with proven mentors, investors, support services, working space and lean startup education to move from idea to viable high growth venture in three months.

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4

  • Profile picture of Activation Capital VA Bio Tech Park
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  • Profile picture of Tech Center Research Park

    Tech Center is a 100-acre, mixed-use development in Newport News. By promoting the growth of a creative-minded community, Tech Center will become a place to collaborate, exchange ideas and encourage high-tech entrepreneurship.

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

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  • Profile picture of NRV

    NRV is an early stage growth fund focused on Series A-ready companies scaling in the healthcare/healthy lifestyles space, as well as technology solutions that democratize entrenched industries.

    Sector(s): Education, Financial Services, Health, Information and Communication Technologies, Other

    VIRAL Level(s): 7

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VIRAL Level 5: Solidifying the Business Model

You’ve got a revenue model in place and are making money.

Your team has strong sales and operations capability and you’re actively building a strategy to bring down your customer acquisition costs.

What investors at this stage are likely to like about your business:

  • Your business model.

    You’re making money and beginning to grow your customer base. You’re building increasing evidence through sales that you’re solving a significant problem in the market and that you’re differentiated enough that people are paying you for your solution.

  • Your product.

    You’ve nailed user experience in your product – it’s easy to use and your customers are continuing to use it.  Your team has a deep understanding of the customer’s pain points, what features need to be improved, and have a product roadmap to address those concerns.

  • Your sales/distribution strategy.

    You’re in promising conversations with potential partners for sales and distribution to take your product to market at scale. You might even have such partnership in place already, and it’s important to emphasize this to investors as it’s what enables you to beat your competition in gaining market share.

What investors at this stage are likely to ask questions about:

  • Customer base:

    Investors will want to see that you can move beyond early adopters to a larger customer base. When do you think your sales will start mapping to projections and what’s your strategy to get there?

  • Customer Acquisition cost:

    While you’ve thought about how to reduce cost of acquiring new customers, what are you actively doing to bring this cost down? What’s your marketing strategy to move away from push sales to pull?

  • Regulatory/IP Challenges :

    What’s your strategy for protecting your IP (if applicable) and regulatory hurdles?

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