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See all survey reports: svb.com/startup-outlook-report/ Methodology: The survey was completed between December 4 and 20, 2012 among a national sample of 758 executives of innovation companies withup to $100 million in annual revenues and 500 employees. Over 60% of respondents are President/CEO, 18% CFOs and 19% all other executive titles.OPPORTUNITIES“Increased use of and reliance on socialmedia content expected to open upnumerous opportunities to leverage ourcore analytics technology.”“We feel that a weak macroeconomy providesopportunity to expand the team and ourproduct range at a much lower burn.”CHALLENGESOur challenge: “Ability to hire enoughresources to fuel expected growth.”“Its a bloodbath for engineering talent.”Its a challenge “competing against potentialentrants from larger players such asFacebook and Google.”THINGS ARE LOOKING UP?INTELLECTUAL PROPERTYREVENUE AND PROFITS65%72%78%Say 2012conditions betterthan 2011Generaterevenue17%AreprofitableSay 2013promises to bebetter than 2012ANDBUTOpportunities abound for the fast-moving software sector. Companies in our survey cite expansion intonew markets, the confluence of social, local, and mobile and the increasing demand for cloud computingto handle the explosion of big data as primary growth areas. Hyper-growth makes it difficult to find andretain skilled employees as startups compete for talent with the established companies that can pay topdollar. Technical (STEM) skills are in demand, with sales and marketing a key expertise also needed inthe consumer Internet space.On the policy front, IP is viewed as a valuable strategic asset, but most startups choose speed of innovationrather than IP protection to address competition. All-in-all, the future looks bright. Our software surveyrespondents rated current business conditions as better than last year and believe the future will beeven better.SoftwareA Race to Success59%Choose non-legal means (moving faster)to create competitive advantage39%Say IP is a valuable assetBUTHIRING21%Have women on founding team46%Have foreign-born on founding team91%Plan to hire this year92%Say finding skilledemployees is challengingBUTStartup Outlook 2013