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Free Money for Startups

We have added a large new section to the Versatile VC website with some of the best sources of free money for tech-enabled founders. That’s free as in “free beer”, not free as in “free speech”. Free tech accelerators: No equity, no cash Free money and support from the Fortune Global 500 [...continue reading]

How to find the right online communities

The user experience in the big, ungated social networks is getting steadily worse: spam, bots, fake news. There are three main solutions: technology (i.e., anti-bot tools, but that's an endless battle); gating; and/or curation/moderation. One result: I think we’ll see people spending [...continue reading]

Free money for your impact tech startup

Congratulations!  You’ve decided to launch a technology-enabled startup with a positive social impact!  Nearly every major Silicon Valley venture-capital firm has now invested in a B Corp; maybe you will be one of them! Now the bad news: some venture capitalists have a bias against startups with [...continue reading]

How to choose an investment banker…or replicate one

Should you hire an investment banker?  And if so, who? The good news: even if you are a small company and can’t afford a banker, you can synthetically and cheaply replicate a banker. That’s part of the value proposition of an institutional VC; I have been the (unpaid) investment banker for many [...continue reading]

Fundraising Hacks: What type of capital should you raise, and how do you meet investors?

How do you decide which investor you should target and raise capital from?   Venture capital is just one of many options to finance your business, and it’s typically the most expensive. The broader question is: what type of capital should you raise, and from whom? I find many CEOs/CFOs default [...continue reading]

Should you raise traditional VC or Revenue-Based Investing VC?

 Most founders who are raising capital look first to traditional equity VCs. But should they?  Or should they look to one of the new wave of Revenue-Based Investors? Revenue-Based Investing (“RBI”) is a new form of VC financing, distinct from the preferred equity structure most VCs use.  RBI [...continue reading]

Marketing Your Portfolio Companies to Other Investors

One of my most important responsibilities as a VC is recruiting appropriate co-investors and follow-on investors.  See How VCs structure a syndicate and recruit coinvestors for more on this. I’ve provided here a template for sharing profiles of your companies with other VCs.  At every VC where [...continue reading]

Should you co-found a company with your friend? And how do you split the equity?

If you’re talking with cofounders about launching a new business, you’re fundamentally recruiting someone to take the job of partnering with you for the next decade.  I see a lot of founders who do less due diligence than I think ideal before making that long-term commitment. Just knowing one [...continue reading]