Update on Selling an Idea - Scott Adams' Blog

Update on Selling an Idea

Several months ago I did a little experiment in which I tried to “sell” a business idea in return for equity in what I hoped would be the resulting start-up. It was mostly just an experiment to see if I could sell an unpatented idea. You might be wondering how that turned out.

The whole thing started because I had an idea that I thought could fundamentally change the foundation of civilization, in a good way. And it wouldn’t require any new technology; it’s a straightforward combination of existing systems. I guessed it would cost $10 million to get the idea off the ground,

I previously reported that the first well-placed VC-type with whom I spoke liked the idea a lot. But he wanted an indefinite amount of time to do further research, so I moved to the next investor who had expressed interest in hearing the idea.

The second investor was highly qualified too, and if you follow the technology industry you would recognize the name. He loved the idea and pitched it to his board. They liked it too. We reached a tentative verbal agreement and the investor sent me contracts to review. But before we executed the contracts the investor called to say there was a change in priorities on their end, caused by external events, and they wouldn’t be able to devote the necessary resources to the idea, so they offered to release it.

That’s where it stands now. I might circle back to it at some point.

At the moment I’m busy trying to launch a different start-up that my partners and I have been working on for the past year. This one is designed to solve one of life’s most common problems. Our goal is to save the world a million hours of wasted time. I’ll tell you more in a few weeks.

If you want a sneak peak, we’re looking for some volunteers to try the beta version. Just email me at dilbertcartoonist@gmail.com and I’ll send you the URL in a week or so when we’re ready. All I ask is that you give me your opinion on what you like or don’t like about it. And if you find a bug, I’d like to know about that too.