Both Sides Must Be Fair in a Term Sheet Negotiation

After being an active angel investor for about fifteen years, I realized that many of the discussions I was involved in were virtually identical to ones I'd had many times before.

Looking for Investment? Understand Startup Valuation

How much equity do I have to give to angel investors? If you’re a startup founder looking for angel investment, you need to understand...

How Do I Make a Good Pitch Deck for Investors?

Don't confuse the two: A pitch to be read must be very different from a pitch that supports a live presentation with you talking. Different media, different styles.

Searching for Stephs: Identifying the Greats in Early-Stage Startups

At my investment firm, we look for “Stephs” — as in NBA player Steph Curry for the Golden State Warriors. Why? He’s the underdog...

What’s the Difference Between Angel Investor and VC?

I see this confusion a lot: People use the terms "venture capital," "venture capitalist," and "VC" to apply to any outsider investing in a startup. However, it's really useful to draw some distinctions in this area, between three important classifications: venture capital, angel investors, and anybody else.

Investors Consider These 7 Elements to Be High Risk

If you aren't willing to take some risk as an entrepreneur, then don't expect any gain. Yet everyone has limits, and every investor implicitly has similar limits on what makes a startup investable, or one to avoid at all costs. If you need investors, it's important that you understand their filters, and even if you are funding your own efforts, you need to recognize the red flags.

10 Entrepreneur Milestones That Make Funding Easy

Every investor expects to see some business traction, both before and after a funding event. If you have been working 20 hours a day, and spent your last dollar, but have no results to show, investors will be sympathetic, but will probably tell you that your dream doesn't have wheels. Traction means forward progress.

Do Investors Back First-Time Entrepreneurs?

Investors do indeed back first-time entrepreneurs, but it's clearly their second choice. Most investors prefer to find an entrepreneur who has a proven track record—at least one successful venture—and then bet that the success can be repeated. Their mantra is: "We back the jockey, not the horse."

Don’t Be Fooled by All the Hype for Crowd Funding

The new hot topic for entrepreneurs the last couple of years is crowdfunding, which is anticipated to at least supplement, if not replace, the slow and mysterious process of current Angel and venture capital investors. The problem is that crowdfunding means something different to everyone, and even I have been confused by the different ways the term gets used.

Avoid the Race to Zero

When do you sell your company? Obviously we all want to sell at the top. And there is the problem. How do you know...

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