Silicon Valley for Canadian startups

It’s been a year and a half since I moved to Silicon Valley (well, San Francisco, actually) from Montreal. I get a lot of questions from Canadian entrepreneurs — both visitors as well as prospective immigrants — about how to navigate Silicon Valley.

Yesterday, I gave a presentation to the current FounderFuel class on the things I wished I knew before moving to the Bay area. There’s a summary of some of the key points on the FounderFuel blog, and here are the slides:

  • http://www.facebook.com/goodburga Paul Burger

    As a founder that has recently moved to SF (in the last year) this is spot on. Some great points that you don’t hear often around legal structure, SR&ED traps and flying in for a week to fundraise. All round great post! Sharing now :)

  • http://www.favvas.com/ George Favvas

    Thanks, Paul. These are all mistakes I’ve made myself, but if I can help others avoid them then great.

  • http://twitter.com/jacktiantai Jack Tai

    Great post George! Wish this was recorded :)

  • Rob Saric

    Thanks for sharing George!

  • http://www.facebook.com/goodburga Paul Burger

    I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t fallen into a couple of those traps myself :) This post would have saved me some serious time and money a few years ago! Thanks again.

  • Neil Movold

    Thanks for sharing this George. I have flown in and out of SF over the years, but spent 3 months as part of the CTA program at the end of last year and fully experienced what you pointed out. It took me a good 3-4 weeks just to get a sense of the place, the ecosystem etc. From that newly gained perspective, I could set my objectives more appropriately. I love what things like the 48Hours in the Valley are trying to do, but I sat through those events and think that without at least being there for 3 weeks straight or more (more the better), you will be out of sight, out of mind the moment you leave and you won’t have a true pulse on how things work there. I absolutely love SF. I won’t be moving there, but I will certainly be spending more time there in the future as I feel more like a local than a visitor now.

  • http://www.favvas.com/ George Favvas

    Thanks, Neil. You are completely right. I used to think I understood the valley from repeated short trips here, and I was wrong.

  • Dave Mundy

    Any chance someone caught this talk on video?

  • Erica Leendertse

    Hello George! I’m a producer with Fathom Film Group, we’re an award-winning company with Emmy nominations, Canadian Academy wins, and shortlists for the Oscars based in Toronto. We’re currently working on a documentary about biohacking and we’re hoping to find a Canadian recently moved to the Bay Area to profile – someone who might consider nootropics etc. to get ahead. I’m wondering if you happen to know anyone or could suggest places to look? Please email me at erica (@) fathomfilmgroup.com if you have any ideas thanks! Erica