Defining a startup

A friend of mine said something recently that I didn’t have an answer to at the time, and I’ve been thinking about since. “I have friends,” he said,” whose companies are 5 or 10 years old and they’re still talking about them as startups. When does a startup stop being a startup?”

Now thanks to this great “things I’ve learned” post from Tren Griffin I have an answer that makes sense:

“A startup is a temporary organization designed to search for a repeatable and scalable business model.” Any analysis of this statement should start with a definition of “business model.” I like the Mike Maples, Jr. definition: “The way that a business converts innovation into economic value.” Steve Blank has his own definition: “A business model describes how your company creates, delivers and captures value.”