Not four weeks before we held our Tech Cocktail Week Startup Mixology Book Launch, Brad Wisler was faced with a dire situation. He had finished investing out of his third fund a year prior, a $1 million fund, and had made a huge bet on EarBits.
The music streaming service had graduated from Y Combinator, had 14,000 bands on their platform, and 800 labels supporting them as well. However, they just didn’t have enough money to execute on their plan.
So, early in the year Wisler and his team decided to sell the company, and over the course of the last six months they got really close with a few suitors. However, in the end they simply didn’t get an offer and Wisler found that his future as a fund manager was in jeopardy.
His wife told him to “get out there and fix it,” but all hope had faded and they hit the end of the runway still on the ground. The site was pulled, the apps removed, and the entrepreneurs went home to lick their wounds.
Yet 24 hours later the phone rang and they got a term sheet to buy the company. In one, single day they went from absolute disparity to securing perhaps the biggest ROI to date.
Every startup has these ‘near death experiences’, even Zappos. The only difference, according to Wisler, is that sometimes the story ends with a turn around and sometimes it ends with failure.
During his talk, Wisler encouraged all the entrepreneurs out there to stop spending their time planning and thinking about what their plan should be. Rather, he urged them to spend their time thinking about what they want their story to be.
Here’s the video: