Cast Blog: #SILICONVALLEY

Kim Talks Shonova

Ending the Friendship with Sarah

David's GoalSponsors Progress

David's Start-Up Advice

Kim Quits!

Hermione's Start-Up Meltdown

Is Sarah the White Oprah?

Ben and Hermione's Brawl

What's Ben Worth?

Sarah Defines Date-Cheating

A 'When Harry Met Sally' Relationship

Sarah's Guide to Dating Geeks

Sarah, Jay, and Hermione's Love Triangle

"Dating in Silicon Valley Sucks!"

Stuck in Between Sarah and Jay

The SXSW Debacle

How (Not to) Pitch for Investment

Just Say "Yes"

No Such Thing as a Free Lunch

David's 'Twilight'-esque Complexion

Kim Talks Shonova

Find out more about Kim's start-up.

New York and SF: The Valley or the Alley?

What an insane season. Datecheating. Quitting my job. Dwight gets acquired by Facebook. I'm definitely letting him buy dinner now and apparently move all large furniture moving forward.

You meet my beautiful friend Kathryn (founder of an awesome job site for women called The Muse) who gives me advice on whether or not to relocate my company to New York. She currently just moved her company's HQ back to NYC. The New York - San Francisco tech rivalry is basically Tupac vs. Biggie 2.0 but no one dies.

Shonova – WTF is it?

“I need to figure out what the f*ck I am doing.” – one of my more articulate quotes from the season finale

Excellent news. I did! We’re building a fashion site called Shonova. Part editorial. Part user generated content via photos and mini reviews. I’m going to curate all of the best contemporary designers for you and the events you can wear them to from weddings to NBA basketball games. You can show me how it’s done in your neck of the woods whether you are in New York, LA, SF or Gone with the Wind fabulous in Atlanta. I am working closely with some awesome advisors and consultants like mobile expert Gabor Cselle and Libby Leffler from Facebook.

It’s been such an insane whirlwind letting the world see the early stage days of a startup which at it’s core is always just an idea about what the future might look like. Some people will laugh at it. Some won’t understand it. Some will tell you it will never work. And none of it matters.

High end fashion is evolving at a rapid speed and wanted to build something around the changing macro environment that people like me would use.

Fashion bloggers like BryanBoy and ManRepeller are now in the front row at fashion week. OscarPRGirl is leading the modernization of the luxury movement making storied institutions like Oscar de la Renta relevant to a younger audience of Gen X and Gen Y.  Chanel is still not selling clothes online. Stella McCartney has a ski and sports line. Fashion is a fascinating space. The newest high end fashion editors in America are YOU. I’m just going to make it a little easier for you so you to tell your story (and read about others) so you don’t have to build anything.

Fashion is moving towards being influenced more by geography, culture and social context than just trends. The clothes you wear can change your life. I am here to make you happy and make sure you are the best dressed.

When are we launching?

Currently I’m closing out my seed round, securing our first clients who are a combination of large designers and cosmetic brands.

We’re going to be launching Shonova to the public in March. It’s currently going to be in what is called a “closed beta” which you can sign up for here by connecting through your Facebook account.

Thank you so much for all of your support, emails, letters (how did you find my address?!) and kind words. It keeps me going. I love hearing from all of you on our Facebook page. I’m listening!Dating Life. Stealth mode.

Yes, I meet a very cute entrepreneur named Josh in New York. We still hang out and are friends.

And yes there are rumors in the New York Times that I will be relocating to New York. You’ll have to wait and see…

Until we meet again!

xoxo.

Kim

Thanks so much for tuning in to watch Start-Ups: Silicon Valley! Follow me on Twitter (@kimmytaylor) and Like us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ShonovaInc).

Follow me on:
Shonova: www.shonova.com
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/kim03182 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/kimtaylor10

Kim Quits!

Kim dishes on her big decision.

New beginnings and sudden endings! Episode 4 we cover me FINALLY quitting my job to do my first start-up Shonova. Many of you saw this coming. We also cover the less glamorous side of start-up life, which happens to include emotional breakdowns (which we all have). Hang in there, Hermione!
 
Quitting
 
Moving to San Francisco was purely a career move for me. My original plan was to join an education start-up in New York. Like many people who move for work in the beginning, I had no friends, worked insane hours, and was terribly homesick. Most of my friends in Chicago I had known for 10+ years.
 
Quitting was a huge and very personal decision for me, since I felt I sacrificed so much of personal life the past two years for Ampush.
 
My boss Jesse is the best (and last) person I’ll ever work for. Needless to say I was nervous about giving my notice. When you are at an early stage start-up, you become a family.
 
Understanding the risk, I give up half of my equity to leave. A typical vesting schedule at a start-up is 4 years. This means if you own 4% of a company you will vest 1% each year. Equity a big incentive to join a very early stage start-up. You usually take a large pay cut but are also compensated with equity or stock options. If you leave before you are vested you lose the equity.
 
Sometimes you have to give up good for great. I don’t think everyone should quit their job and join a start-up, but in my case it was something I had been planning on doing for 3 years. I want to build a great product (and company) that delights users. I prepared for not being able to pay myself for a year or longer (not uncommon for a start-up founder).
 
Calling Mom: I'm So Gen Y
 
I didn’t tell my parents when I was quitting my job in Chicago to move to SF. Most people told me it was a dumb/terrible decision. It was high risk at the time. However no one understands your situation as well as you do. I'm 30 and it was important for me to make the decision myself. This case was similar.
 
Why leave without a concrete idea? Ideas matter but aren’t as important as you think. It’s more important to solve a problem in a big emerging market. For me it’s luxury fashion. Equally important is building the team and execution.
 
Oh and then I cry over my cabernet. It was an incredibly overwhelming day for me to share on camera. My job was a huge part of my identity and it was strange to be leaving it behind for the unknown. But this place does something to you and you become a product of the environment.Girls’ Night + Dwight: New Beginnings
 
I have a close group of girlfriends I lean on for everything, and yes, we buy our own bottle service! There are amazing start-ups out there that will also help you easily split this cost between friends like Crowdtilt and Pay by Group that can also be more economical options than paying for one off drinks – especially if you drink as much as we do! It's also really easy to get a ride home with Uber or Lyft, which are both computerized dispatch applications.
 
I’m not a big club goer, but I try to go to some a few times a year when I feel like getting dressed up. Dressing up doesn’t happen often in Silicon Valley. At Harlot we toast to “new beginnings, sudden endings, and female domination.” There is no way I could’ve done this without the support of all those women around me.
 
Yup, Dwight is extended an invite to girls’ night. Normally a party foul, but it’s my night, right? We’re really close friends and our relationship is, well, complicated. You’ll have to keep watching!
 
xoxo,
 
Kim
 
Thanks so much for tuning every Monday at 10/9c on Bravo to watch Start-Ups: Silicon Valley! Follow me on Twitter (@kimmytaylor) and subscribe on Facebook (www.facebook.com/kimtaylor10).
 
Follow me on:

Shonova: www.shonova.com
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/kim03182
Facebook: www.facebook.com/kimtaylor10