Accelerating Great Companies

POSTED ON December 16, 2019

At Marker Seven, we’re privileged to work with companies of all sizes across a nearly infinite variety of vertical markets. But as a company with a strong entrepreneurial drive, we have a special affinity working with early-stage startups. 

Don’t get us wrong, we love working with the big guys, too. Robust product suites, user research, refined processes, established brand guidelines, and clearly defined strategic goals – it’s amazing to work with clients who’ve got a lot to work with. 

But early-stage start-ups have none of those things. What they do have is an entirely unique suite of nascent challenges – ones that we thrive on solving.

In our experience, startups typically have just two tangible assets: a visionary founder and a minimum viable product (MVP). The challenge is solving everything else, not the least of which are nebulous business models, rough pitch decks, and lack of connections to the right funding sources. 

If these issues aren’t figured out quickly, game-changing ideas that can have global impact may never see the light of day. Fortunately, Marker Seven can help with all of that.

One of our recent success stories is Sylvatex, a start-up with a vision to reduce fossil fuel consumption – and global emissions – via its novel chemistry. The company developed a process for producing an inexpensive, organic, renewable, bio-additive for diesel that reduces particulate matter by 40%, and also promises to reduce global emissions by 12% per the Paris Climate Accord. But it doesn’t stop there: the technology also holds great promise to make production of electric vehicle fuel cells more efficient and thus cheaper. Truly game-changing technology for such small company. But after years of fundraising and pitching with moderate success, the company was running out of avenues to move forward and was at risk of fading away like so many startups do.

When we engaged with Sylvatex, Marker Seven’s first step was to partner with a highly experience advisor from our curated network of leaders in the business accelerator and VC communities. After some quick discovery, it was clear the business needed a more tightly focused business model and new avenues to connect with investors. After spending several intensive weeks crafting a new approach, the major deliverables were compelling:

  • Streamlined business model
  • Solidification of multiple revenue streams
  • Explanation of proprietary chemistry in layman’s terms
  • Go-to-market strategy
  • Identification of appropriate funding amount
  • Development of compelling pitch deck
  • Presentation coaching

The results of our work are twofold for Sylvatex. It now has:

  • A laser-focused, highly compelling business case for investors
  • An entirely new platform and approach to how it communicates its authentic story

At Marker Seven, we love any business challenge. But when we have the opportunity to breathe life into a great idea and a clear a new path forward, it’s especially rewarding.   

  • John Clauss
    Partner