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TheFunded.com Advice

Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-06

Tags: Preparation Fund Diligence

PUBLIC:

Funds at venture firms are often designed with a narrow focus for both the returns and types of deals they need. On top of that, there is the usual hot areas of interest. Find out what is most interesting to the decision makers and find out not only what they have done by looking at their portfolio, find out what's in the works. Learn what are the reasons for the interest in the active deals. Just ask, they won't tell you the company name, but they'll tell you what is interesting to them in broad sweeps. That will help you see if you fit and also help you revise your pitch to better fit the mold. It also helps you understand what other firms will find interesting. It's copycat all over the place out there. Oh, and if you didn't notice, look for the next thing in clean tech, not in enterprise software or web2.0. Go where the interest is high and the deal competiton is low. Find the firms that get that and don't agree to a meeting until you have qualified them early. Build a target list of the best say 10 firms and figure out how to get introduced to a partner. Narrow focus your efforts and get in there. You should also split your list into two batches, maybe 5-10 in each one. This way if your model bombs in the first run, you still have a chance to clean it up and go again without having polluting your chances by broadcasting that you still haven't gotten funded. Go small and focused and target the exceptional firms and then get in to the key partners or not at all. The more you know about who is interested in your category and type of deal, the more you will know how to leverage one firm against another as you start to get traction. Get one of them to give you a term sheet and the rest will then jump in line to catch up. Then slow down and make careful decisions and your company success may well depend on what you do at that point.

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