Thoughts on startups by investors that
fund them & entrepreneurs that run them

Category Archives: How To Fundraise

Should I give my seed investors anti-dilution protection?

What this investor is seeking is called “permanent, full-ratchet, anti-dilution protection”, and that is neither (a) in line with the market, nor (b) practical. Even if you were willing to give it to him, it is highly, highly unlikely to stand up beyond the next financing round, because there’s no way your next investor is going to take a dilution

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Crowdfunding: KickStarter, Indiegogo, AngelList, Gust: How to choose?

First, it’s important to understand that the four platforms you list fall into two very distinct groups.

Kickstarter and IndieGoGo are project-based crowdfunding platforms through which anyone can contribute money, either as a donation or with the promise that they will receive a tangible ‘reward’ of some kind if the project is successful.

Gust and AngelList are equity-based platforms, used by Accredited Investors  to facilitate the investment of money for an ownership interest in a company.

As such,

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What is the worst startup pitch ever?

Take your choice (these are both real, honest-to-God pitches, and I’ve got the originals in my possession):

Contestant A
CluelessCo is an internet startup company seeking $2 million of equity financing to fund our company for at least one year. CluelessCo will become the main consumer outlet for the internet, digital cable and satellite TV, and cell phones and PDAs.

How does someone get a meeting with angel investor David S. Rose?

The most useful meetings with an investor are ones where going in everyone understands that there may actually be a rational reason for the investor to be interested. So even if my own mother asked me to meet with you, and you were pitching me a biotech opportunity for a $10 million investment at a $90 million valuation, I might

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What is the best way to connect with investors?

With Gust, the power of the system is that your completed investor relations profile can now serve as your official application to virtually any organized angel group in the world…all you need to do is share it with them*.  I’d suggest that you browse through the Gust investor search engine for investment groups (and accelerators, incubators, business plan competitions, et al) that are

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What is the best approach to get funding for my startup?

When you create a profile on Gust, you immediately get emailed a link for a free download of Bill Payne’s excellent book “The Definitive Guide to Raising Money from Angels”, which is an excellent overview of the whole process. Good luck!

*original post can be found on Quora @ http://www.quora.com/David-S-Rose/answers *

What are five tough questions that every founder should be prepared to answer in a pitch to VC’s?

How will you make money (and no, advertising is not the answer)?
Who, specifically, is your first customer? Second? Third?
What is your contingency plan for when this seed round is exhausted, and you are unable to raise any more?
What is your API/platform/partnership strategy?
How are you going to sell the company, and to whom, within six years?

 

As an investor, what is the worst presentation that you have seen?

I’ve written on this topic previously, including David S. Rose’s answer to Startups: What is the worst startup pitch ever?. While I’ve never laughed outright during a pitch, I’ve certainly had quite a few occasions where I had to work hard not to wince. The problems with bad pitches tend to fall into the following major categories:

Ten minute-pitch: What to I include in my slide deck since it’s not really an “elevator pitch”?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzDBrMisLm0?wmode=opaque&autoplay=1&autohide=1&iv_load_policy=3&enablejsapi=1]

Is the Marketing Strategy not important in a business plan when pitching to VCs?

Marketing strategy actually is quite important to most investors. The bottom line is that if no one shows up to buy or use your product, it doesn’t matter one whit how cool or great or innovative it is. And investors do not like top-down projections (“we’ll get a 10% market share…”). They very much want to see how you are going to get your first customer,

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