WSJ Sees Struggles in 2010 for Entrepreneurs

Collen Debaise of the WSJ wrote a piece predicting tough times in 2010 for entrepreneurs.  Traditional sources of funding (personal savings, friends, stock & real estate assets) have all been hit during the recent downturn.

There is some good data in the story, though I think it a bit odd that they chose to highlight a chef/restaurateur in LA as representative (though he is an immigrant). From the article:

Funding from angel investors, or high-net-worth individuals who provide capital to young companies, fell 30% to $9.1 billion in the first half of 2009 compared with the same period a year earlier. That figure is expected to remain flat for 2010, according to Jeffrey Sohl, director of University of New Hampshire’s Center for Venture Research, which tracks the data.

What is encouraging, Mr. Sohl says, is the number of deals has ticked up slightly. While angels are investing less—$370,000 per deal in 2009, versus $530,000 in 2008—about 24,500 ventures received funding during the first half of 2009, compared with 23,100 the year earlier.

The article is worth reading, but after a decade in high-growth startups and industries, I think there are more struggle years for successful entrepreneurs than there are easy/flush years. 2009 was difficult and 2010 will also be a challenge, but for entrepreneurs, being short of resources and struggling is always part of the deal.