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

Blog Archives

Trying to Raise Money? Thinking About Gust for Startup Fundraising?

How to Make Your Gust Account Stand Out to Investors

Before you read any further, I want you to know that I’ve personally used Gust to raise money for my first tech startup. I know a lot of other entrepreneurs who use or have used Gust to seek funds, but their profiles don’t always get attention from investors. Below are

Read more >

Raising Capital as a First Time Founder

A year ago, in mid September 2014, I walked out of a Starbucks in San Francisco with the very first check from an angel investor for Glassbreakers. Though it was only $5,000, it was enough to prove to myself and my co-founder, Lauren Mosenthal, that we could actually fundraise for our startup. We already had 1,000 women signed

Read more >

How to Secure a Lead Investor

By Paula Taas, Founder Institute

You’ve created an amazing founding team, you’ve built a brilliant product that has been gaining a lot of traction, and now you’re looking to expand your company. How do you continue to build your business? By searching for a lead investor in your next funding round.

The lead investor is the

Read more >

Why Does Startup Pricing Vary by Location?

Posted by on May 15th, 2015

Entrepreneurs seem genuinely surprised to find that investors in Peoria or Little Rock are not willing to invest in startup companies at Silicon Valley prices.  After all, they just read in TechCrunch that investors funded a company similar to theirs at an $8 million pre-money valuation!

The valuation of startup companies shouldn’t be impacted by location, should they?  Guess again! 

Read more >

What are the most valuable recommendations in order to raise money from VCs connected via Gust?

To begin with, it is important to understand some basic facts about the world of entrepreneurial finance:

There are many more entrepreneurs than there are investors, with the result that only one company out of every 400 that seeks venture funding actually receives it. As such, the competition from an entrepreneur’s standpoint is very, very tough. In order to be

Read more >

When do you suggest startups begin fund raising?

If founding a startup was easy, there would be a lot more of them, and the percentage that are successful would be much higher.

Unfortunately, it isn’t.

The essence of entrepreneurship is creating a new venture where one does not already exist in the market as you find it. As such, the founding process is one in which the entrepreneur

Read more >

Angel Group Syndication of Series A Rounds

Posted by on May 8th, 2013

US angel investors have been a robust source of seed stage capital for years.  More recently, we have experienced significant growth in the number of funded seed stage deals, due to the emergence of accelerators, super angels and new seed stage funds.  Unfortunately, we are now suffering a Series A startup funding crunch, that is, a lack of seed stage

Read more >

Convertible Debt is Bad For Angels

A couple of years ago, Paul Graham (Y Combinator) tweeted “Convertible notes have won. Every investment so far in this YC batch (and there have been a lot) has been done on a convertible note.”

The truth is convertible debt has not won.  Many sophisticated angel investors and angel groups refuse to invest in convertible debt in seed/startup deals.  Why? 

Read more >

Due Diligence Is A Two-Way Street

Investors regularly confuse entrepreneurs with their various approaches to validating deals prior to investment (a process called “due diligence”).   A few seed stage investors (angels, super angels or seed stage VCs) have coffee with an entrepreneur and quickly learn enough to write checks.  Other investors or groups of investors study deals for months before investing.  Why do some investors take

Read more >

Convertible Debt, Priced Equity Rounds and Deal Timing

An impromptu Twitter debate arose among Fred Wilson, Dave McClure, Mark Suster, Chris Dixon and others about convertible debt, priced equity rounds, and the nuances of early stage financing. It was such a good discussion that Fred asked that someone Storify it. I’ve done that here and expanded it with some additional references, background info and light commentary.

http://storify.com/antonejohnson/convertible-debt-priced-equity-rounds-and-timing