Common traits of well-funded start-ups

As I was trying to make up my mind about some modest investment of mine, I went through the recent funding announcements on TechCrunch, CrunchBase and Journal du Net to check what VCs consider hot.

Looking at 2011’s investments into eCommerce start ups, I noticed the following common traits of well-funded start-ups. It seems that the following characteristics make a start-up worthy of a sizable $10M to $100M in one round:

Mobile application. Magic words: iPhone, iPad, Android
Social media component. Magic words: Facebook, renren
Shopping application. Magic words: Coupons, Group Buying, Buying Club
Web-based application. Magic words: Cloud computing
Global footprint. Magic word: China
Localized application. Magic words: Local deals, Geolocalized
Free(-mium) business model. Magic words: Free basic service

From that I concluded that a free global mobile application, also developed for the Chinese market, that would enable Facebook and renren users to automatically geolocalize (without tedious check-in) and get a local shopping coupon to share with friends and other members of a group buying club would be a total hit.

Or would that be another Ford T?

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