Monday, October 5, 2009
Calacanis Takes On Keiretsu Forum On Fees
Jason Calacanis, CEO of Santa Monica-based Mahalo.com and co-producer of the TechCrunch50 conference--not known for pulling his punches--publicly targeted angel group The Keiretsu Forum today for their presentation fees. According to Calacanis, he's on a campaign to "destroy" the angel group, saying that the group has been taking advantage of startup companies by charging them $4,000 to $6,000 to present to angel investors. The effort highlights and ongoing debate between angel groups who do not charge entrepreneurs to present, and angel groups--and commercial ventures--who regularly charge a steep fee for presentations. The issue seems to be coming to a boil in recent weeks, with another high profile public debate over the issue between TechStars' David Cohen and startup pitching outfit FundUniverse spilling out into the open a couple of weeks ago. That issue was over similar fees--but much more modest fees--being charged to startups to present their pitches at an event. In Calacanis' personal blog, he called for bloggers to launch a public campaign against Keiretsu.