9 Nigerian startups secure funding after being named finalists of energy challenge – Disrupt Africa

9 Nigerian startups secure funding after being named finalists of energy challenge  Disrupt Africa
“startups when:1d” – Google News

[Virgin Hyperloop One in Digital Trends] Sara Luchian on being the first Virgin Hyperloop passenger

From the Digital Trends CES Experience center, Ariana Escalante and Andre Stone continue our coverage of CES 2021 with Sara Luchian, head of passenger experience with Virgin Hyperloop.

Read more here.

The post [Virgin Hyperloop One in Digital Trends] Sara Luchian on being the first Virgin Hyperloop passenger appeared first on OurCrowd Blog.

OurCrowd Blog

After being awarded €4.8M by EU Commission, this Dutch scaleup aims to make quantum computers scalable

Quantum computer

Quantum computing, a phenomenon, which was impossible a decade back, is now on the verge of becoming a reality. Numerous tech giants — Google, IBM, Alibaba Group, Accenture, and more, globally are racing towards building the first quantum computer. 

According to the experts, Quantum computing can potentially tackle problems even today’s supercomputer cannot cope with. To make it simpler, Quantum Computers can solve a problem within a minute, that would take conventional computer years to solve. 

However, to build a stable and commercially viable Quantum Computer, various challenges must be conquered, regarding the scalability and the correction of computational errors. 

This is where Qblox, a Dutch company comes into play. Based out of Delft, the company has developed the next generation of qubit control hardware named the ‘Cluster’ series.

Innovation award and €4.8M funding

Recently, the Dutch company announced that it has won CES 2021 Innovation Award honoree for the next generation of qubit control hardware – the Cluster series.  

On the other hand, the company also secured €4.8M in seed funding from the European Innovation Council – Horizon 2020.

Current prototype limitations

At the heart of quantum computing are so-called quantum bits or ‘qubits’. The quantum processor is a ~ 1cm chip on which calculations are performed. 

Qubits are fragile and extremely sensitive to imperfections in the control signals, making it highly complex to control even a handful of qubits. 

Current prototype quantum computers use off-the-shelve electronics for this purpose, which has its limitations due to cost, size, and complexity. 

How Qblox Cluster benefit companies?

In this regard, Qblox focuses on the control electronics, the ‘control stack’, of the quantum computer. It’s worth mentioning here that, control stack generates control signals and interprets algorithm outcomes.

According to the company, the new Qblox Cluster is a scalable and modular 19″ rack system that can control up to 20 qubits from a single device. 

Integrating several functions into one device, the company squeezes bulky equipment into a single handy little box, improving cabling problems as well. 

The Cluster enables Quantum computer developers with dedicated qubit control equipment that offers massive scalability, ultra-low signal noise, and low-latency feedback.

And by cascading multiple Cluster systems together, it leads to integrated quantum control capabilities for unprecedented numbers of qubits. 

Spinoff of quantum technology institute

Qblox was founded in 2019 by Niels Bultink and Jules van Oven, and  the spinoff of QuTech – the advanced research centre for Quantum Computing and Quantum Internet. It is a Dutch Quantum technology scaleup that offers patented solutions for scalable control of quantum computers. The company is on a mission to build the control hardware stacks that can manage the upcoming generations of quantum processors.

Startups – Silicon Canals

Am I being screwed over or is it a fair deal?

So rewind 2 and half years ago to around summer 2018 and I agreed to help build a tech start-up (I'm a dev) with a contact (CTO) I'd worked with before. An external contact within the industry (which the tech is for) reached out to him (CTO) with an idea and he agreed it was good and decided to source two devs: myself and somebody else. The CTO is a fairly successful entrepreneur and decided to part fund it himself. I have a very good working relationship with him.

I was able to agree 2.5% equity and a modest salary of 50k pa. No pension, private health care etc. I was actually on 50k at that point already so there was no increase in pay and no additional benefits. 50k pa and 2.5% equity.

The other developer agreed 60k and some additional for private health care. He wasn't awarded any equity.

This was very new to me, and hindsight is a wonderful thing. Perhaps I should've negotiated a better salary and additional for health care etc as well.

The agreement was I was the main guy and had input in everything. I was the first "employee".

Over the 2 years we built the application, but the other dev completely butchered the backend and there were so many issues with scalability and performance. It went live last summer and while we did secure paying customers, there were far too many issues so the plug was pulled temporarily.

Since that time, this dev was furloughed indefinitely and a new dev was brought in to rebuild everything. Unfortunately, despite my stuff (front-end) being flawless (I had a lot of praise and compliments for it), I naturally had to refactor a lot to conform to the new backend so I've essentially had to do the same job twice because the furloughed dev completely murdered the backend. I understand startups can be rocky at times so I just knuckled down and got on with it although clearly I wasn't pleased with having to refactor everything when it was fine. I don't think anybody would be but it is what it is. There was a clear road ahead at this point and it was positive.

This is where I'm starting to question everything.

This new dev that was brought in is a lot older than me and more experienced in backend development. That's fine. This new dev had also worked with the CTO for the past 20 years on different projects etc so my feeling is while he's come in to rebuild the backend, he's clearly the "main guy" now. Perhaps I'm being paranoid I don't know? I know he negotiated a very good deal and his bargaining power was already huge due to his history with the CTO. I know he negotiated a very good deal because he told the furloughed dev during some knowledge transfer calls.

Is it reasonable to think he's got a better deal than me? He's literally come in after everything has been built so there have been no unknowns etc as the codebase was already there for him to know how things work etc, yet I've been there from day one.

My current salary is 50k still which is so far below market rate now it's insulting. No pension, health care etc. I should've negotiated that and that was my mistake. I've looked at other jobs across the UK and I could be making easily 100k+ with far less stress and a solid pension and private health care.

I know I have the equity, but I have to actually be able to live and living costs/utility bills etc have all increased massively yet I've had no increase at all. I'm aware how in-demand developers and VPs are and this has further exacerbated my feelings on it.

Have I got a good deal or am I being taken for a ride? I was always positive about it until the new dev was brought in and now I feel like I'm not the main guy anymore, I have no input or say, I'm grossly underpaid and I even feel like the equity is too low now. I've had to do the same job twice because of the furloughed dev's incompetence but I've not seen any benefit at all. It's been constant stress and under appreciation.

I asked about an increase etc as I know I'm grossly underpaid now with no pension etc, but I'm told we have to wait until we're in revenue. I understand that, but it's okay for the new dev to agree a really good deal yet I've been there from the beginning, have had to do the same job twice in that time, but get no increase etc?

I'm not sure how to feel? Is it reasonable to feel like I've been usurped at the last minute by the new dev who has a better deal than me yet I've been there from day one?

Tldr;

  • Agreed to build tech startup with CTO in summer 2018 as the first dev. Agreed 50k pa and 2.5% equity. Agreement is I'm the "main guy".
  • Second dev agreed 60k pa and additional for private health care. No equity.
  • We go live last summer but have many issues with backend so the second dev is furloughed and a new dev is brought in to rebuild it.
  • New dev has 20 year working relationship with CTO and agrees very good deal. I don't know what exactly, but I know he had to be persuaded.
  • Now I feel like I'm no longer the main guy, have any say or input, and the new dev has a better deal than me even though I've been there from day one and he's only been there a few months.
  • Asked about increase etc but told to wait until generating revenue, yet new dev agreed very good deal and has only just come in yet I've been there from day one.
  • Is it reasonable to feel like I've been usurped at the last minute by the new dev who has a better deal than me yet I've been there from day one?
  • Have I got a fair deal? Am I being screwed over? My salary is grossly underpaid but I do have 2.5% equity. Am I paranoid to think the new dev was given more equity/salary? (I don't actually know hence paranoia).

Thanks all. I'm just super confused and feel like I'm in too deep to just walk away, yet at the same time feel like the goal posts have moved so much that I'm now getting a poor deal.

I would love to know your thoughts and opinions.

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

I’m being asked to help create a property management startup as its CEO. Can’t find much on CEO negotiations; what are some reasonable models to think about in this situation? (Texas)

My background is mostly Fortune 500s in consulting and mid-level management. My focus is on aligning people/systems/tech to growth/revenue goals. For the past year I'm VP of IT at another early-stage startup and making a reasonable salary and a small equity %; I've had a lot of success in my domain but the org is stagnating and I sense the founders are losing interest.

Two guys I know are asking me to join as CEO to create and grow a not-yet-existing property management company. They are the board, I'm the employee: haven't gotten into specifics yet but my guess is they are going to highly overvalue their future equity and try to make a modest % be a substantial part of my compensation.

They've said they can bring 500 units in the next 6 months (including their own) which would be very foundational. I don't know what else what they are bringing yet in terms of money or resources.

I am comfortable describing the value I'd bring / walking away from this if it doesn't feel favorable, but I'd love to know more about some models that are common in this scenario to help me evaluate and negotiate their offer. Do startups bring a CEO to help found the business but not treat/compensate them as a co-founder? Is that common? Reasonable to ask for an equal cut as the founders? etc…

submitted by /u/LaphroaigAndRibeye
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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

How to present an Augmented Reality demo without being copied ?

I have an app that could improve the workflow of a certain type of business.

I am thinking of contacting a number of different companies and showing them a video of the demo and asking them if they would like to meet and discuss more.

The problem is that the demo and idea is quite simple to implement. So they could forward the email to someone and ask them for an implementation.

How should I approach this ? Should I avoid showing the demo? But then they might just say no. When it comes to AR it is usually better if you can visualise demos, rather than writing them down.

submitted by /u/thowawayforadog
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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

Billionaire investor Chris Sacca mocks ‘Robinhood bros’ for being reckless: ‘Stonks never go down!’ – Business Insider India

Billionaire investor Chris Sacca mocks ‘Robinhood bros’ for being reckless: ‘Stonks never go down!’  Business Insider India
“startups when:1d” – Google News