• Proves you can implement !
• Shows faith in yourself ! If you don’t
invest in yourself, why do you expect
investors to ?
• Guerilla marketing
• Your customers are your best source of
• If you can get paying customers, the
investors will follow !
Ideas, Implementation and
• Ideas are a dime a dozen. Don’t fall in
love with your ideas – most are bad !
• Generate lots of ideas ! This improves
your chances of stumbling on the right
• Don’t worry anyone will steal your
ideas. Share them and ask for criticism,
so you can polish them !
• Passion is necessary but not sufficient
Finding investors – simple, not
• Cold email
• Warm introduction
• Establish yourself as a thought leader –
get them to come to you !
• The purpose of the first contact is to get
permission to get a second meeting
Have realistic expectations !
• Investors are busy
• Get flooded with pitches
• Default response is always – No !
• You need to be persistent and patient !
• Respect them – learn to empathise
• Ask for a NDA
• Use DCF for valuation
• Try to bluff
• Refuse to accept criticism and
• “ Wannabe entrepreneurs”
• Only an idea, with no
• Hockey stick curve for revenue
• “ No competition”
• No skin in the game
• Too many buzz words, such as AI
• Due Diligence Checklist
• Term Sheet
• Our preferred option – CCPS, in
tranches, based on milestones
• Term sheets
• Focus on areas of agreement
• Use standard templates
• Find a startup friendly lawyer
Whom do I fund ?
• Fall in love with the team
• Non-financial reasons
• LOI vs ROI
• Integrity, Curiosity, Humility
• Willing to teach – and to learn
• Paying customers
Smart money vs dumb
• Not all investors are the same
• Do your homework before
• Treat the money with respect –
raising funds means taking on lots
Pearls of wisdom
• Beware of investors :
– asking how much return you can give them
– not respecting your time
• Don’t push-sale your company, get investors
to come to you
• Follow up till investors give you an answer. If
it’s a No , ask why they rejected you
• Learn to negotiate - Don’t be too rigid and
don’t be too flexible
Pearls of wisdom
• Funding is no validation for a business – only
repeat paying satisfied customers are
• Vanity metrics are a trap
• “No”s are not a personal rejection
• Don’t compare yourself with the unicorns –
they are outliers !
• Investors are optional – you can always
Angels vs VCs
• Angels invest personal money. Come in all
shapes and sizes, because they have different
• When did they sign their last cheque ?
Interview their founders
• VC structure – GPs and LPs
• Institutional imperative – decision making by
• Most startups fail
• No one knows which startups will fail
• It’s a numbers game
• What goes up usually went down first
• All companies always need more money
• Be prepared for failure
• Learn to be resilient
• Can be a great journey - will
teach you a lot about yourself –
and about the world !
• Lots of emotional angst
• Hard to convince your family that
you want to chuck up a safe job !
• Need to find support
• Other founders are the best source
The role of mentors and
• Mentor vs Consultants vs Investors -
big difference !
• Many parasites in the startup
• Advisory board
Key ingredient for success – Learn!
• To sell
• To tell stories
• To lead a team
• To get your hands dirty
• To be patient and persistent
• To work in a startup – the best way to
learn a lot very quickly !
Books for Entrepreneurs
• Financial Intelligence for Entrepreneurs by
• Hot Seat by Dan Shapiro
• Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a
Successful Startup by Bill Aulet
• Bootstrapping your Business by Greg
• Start-Up Guide for the Technopreneur:
Financial Planning, Decision Making, and
Negotiating from Incubation to Exit by David
Please buy this book !