What founders should worry about


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A presentation on the key characteristics of a fundable startup and the ways founders should pitch their company (and how they should not do it).

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What founders should worry about

  1. 1. What startups should worry aboutPhilipp MoehringPrincipalSaturday, 25 May 13
  2. 2. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALWe see a lot of startups2Saturday, 25 May 13
  3. 3. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALWe work with a lot of startups3Saturday, 25 May 13
  4. 4. CONFIDENTIALWe know what founders...4are proud ofare excited aboutlike to spend time onSaturday, 25 May 13
  5. 5. CONFIDENTIALAlso what they...dismiss as unimportanttry to hide but can’tworry about5Saturday, 25 May 13
  6. 6. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALWhat’s important?6Saturday, 25 May 13
  7. 7. CONFIDENTIALFounders are constrained by7Time&MoneySaturday, 25 May 13
  8. 8. 8Time will always be scarceMoney is accessible when things go wellSaturday, 25 May 13
  9. 9. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIAL 9Solution:Be faster!Saturday, 25 May 13
  10. 10. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALNaval Ravikant"People spend a surprising amount oftime on things that will contribute little orno value to getting them to a seed round"10Saturday, 25 May 13
  11. 11. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALWhat you shouldactuallyworry about11Saturday, 25 May 13
  12. 12. CONFIDENTIALWhat makes a fundable startup?121. Traction - Customers and users2. Team - You and your people3. Product - MVP or more4. Social Proof - From other investors & advisors5. Pitch/Presentation - Talking about the right thingsSaturday, 25 May 13
  13. 13. CONFIDENTIALShow traction. Any traction.We don’t expect:We have 2 million in recurring revenue.We have 200.000 paid downloads for £ 20 eachThis might be good:We have 5 customers who use our product across the company200 beta testers have invited more than 40 people each.An investment offer from our first trial customer.13Saturday, 25 May 13
  14. 14. CONFIDENTIALExplain why your team is specialBad:We are all really smart. Look at this joke I made. You’re goingto love us. Also, Tim Ferris is my Idol.Good:We’ve been working for the industry leader for 3 years. All ofus learned to code, and built the prototype in 2 months.14Saturday, 25 May 13
  15. 15. CONFIDENTIALBuild a product. Even a small one.Bad:You have no technical cofounderYou “just need money to build this”You haven’t even hacked together a prototypeGood:A basic prototype (even paper or email) someone usesA beautiful, but simple first version15Saturday, 25 May 13
  16. 16. CONFIDENTIALSocial proof is a forcing functionBad:An “angel investor” owns 65% of the business.We’re using our previous employers’ IP and codeGood:We’re building an email startup. Paul Buchheit is an advisor.I convinced 2 facebook cofounders to quit and work with me(not the Vinklevoss Twins)16Saturday, 25 May 13
  17. 17. CONFIDENTIALPitch: Work on your description17Transferwise is a Seedcamp companyBad:We are a a B2C and B2B peer to peer FX platformmatching mid market rates across the EMEA market.Good:We are the cheapest and easiest way to exchange currency.Saturday, 25 May 13
  18. 18. CONFIDENTIALPitch: show market numbersBad:The FX industry is 45 trillion dollars big*. If we just take 1%, weare rich.Good:There are < 2m UK residents who send more than £ 1.000 toEurope each month. We can save them £ 50 per transaction.18* I made this up for the presentationSaturday, 25 May 13
  19. 19. 1/25CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALSome more best practices19Saturday, 25 May 13
  20. 20. CONFIDENTIALBuild a processReach outMake a first meeting countFollow up professionally and fastDrive decision as much as you canDon’t lean back and wait20Saturday, 25 May 13
  21. 21. CONFIDENTIALMake a market21Test drive the pitchUnderstand the investor (!)Pitch investors simultaneouslyFind a lead early and treat them wellLeverage commitmentsUse the right toolsSaturday, 25 May 13
  22. 22. CONFIDENTIALGrow internationally22Be international - show potentialTravel international - be top of mindHire international - build a first class teamPartner international - more customers and co valueFundraise international - better investors, money, exitsSaturday, 25 May 13
  23. 23. CONFIDENTIALCONFIDENTIALCLOSE and get back to work!23Saturday, 25 May 13