AngelList’s Big Four Benefits for Investors

Anyone who regularly reads this column knows I love AngelList. It’s the matchmaker service between promising startups and early stage investors which has revolutionized angel and maybe even VC investing.  There has been a slew of recent articles on AL, including good ones from Venture Hacks, Venture Beat, and BostInnovation.  But while there are a few guides on how to hack AngelList from a startup’s point of view, almost nothing exists for angels looking to get … Read More

How First-Time Entrepreneurs Can Establish Credibility: 3 Case Studies

Last week I had a conversation with an eager young first time entrepreneur (let’s call him Joey) just out of school who was looking for funding. If desire equaled fundability, this guy would have raised $50mm already. I try to make it a point to always respond, even though the bulk of those responses will be a “I’m not interested, here’s why, and here’s a thought for what might be good to do.” In his case, I had to roll … Read More

My Next 8 Months of Angel Investing: One Fund and a Half Dozen Startups

OK, the title of this post has ensured that I’ve gone and blown any shreds of suspense. But I’m writing this to get feedback from all of you, so feel free to pick apart my logic.

Angel investing itself is 100% bottom-up, i.e., picking the right companies. However, in order to figure out how much I have to spend, I need to think top-down, or macro.  I start by figuring out how much is a proper amount to go into … Read More

Changing from No to Yes

I recently changed course and invested in a (unnamed for the time being) green energy-related company.  I see all sorts of startups related to green energy, all of whom previously got a thumbs down. Most often the no is on the team or on capital inefficiency questions, just as in any other sector.

I had seen “X Company” present at angel meetings or conferences three times before, and I never regretted passing on them. So what changed my mind and … Read More

Why I’m Investing in CardMunch

This post will replay some of my thought process prior to investing in CardMunch. I’ll attempt to discuss not just the standard checklist features (“Is beta built?” “How much revenue?”) but also the intangibles that led me to jump in.

At startup presentations, I initially have interest in probably 1 in 4 deals, but in most cases any infatuation goes away after a little due diligence on the team and market. In the end, the actual hit ratio ends … Read More