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Enrolled:
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Duration: 1 Hour
Level: Intermediate
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Fundraising for your company via Angel or Venture Capital Investors can be one of the most challenging endeavors for startup founders and early-stage companies.   The difference between a good investor pitch and great investor pitch routinely will make or break a company.  This course walks you through the preparation process and the necessary information to be covered.  The course will help you understand the mindset of the investor, so you can specifically target their interests and avoid common pitfalls.

Intro Video Transcript

Hello, I'm Bruce Schechter and it's my privilege to be here today to talk to you about creating a winning pitch for Venture Capital Investors. If you're involved in any way in the process of preparing for and delivering to investors, then this course is for you. The audience that I am targeting includes those on the finance side, who are very key contributors into this investment pitch strategy, but in particular, the CEO is critical. The CEO is traditionally the prime spokesman in engagements with angel investors or venture capital investment firms. Other founders of the company or key executives may be very interested because they are probably key contributors as well. We will look at both the angel investment early seat stage and the earlier and mid-level fundraising endeavors with venture firms, all the way from so-called Series seed, all the way up to Series A and B. Now we won't really go beyond Series B and beyond because at that level, the fundraising process is very much financially driven and metrics driven, which is actually a very different art form than the early stage that's more dependent on visionary aspects of the pitch, and more on that later. First, let me walk you through the journey that we'll go through in the process today. We'll walk through three key elements of the discussion today. First an introduction, which I call "Art versus Science," second an introduction to key tools for fundraising, and third, discussion of delivery. So first off, I've titled this first section "Art versus Science" because there really is an element of art and an element of science and I'll distinguish the two. I also want to spend a little time distinguishing some of the key terminology as I alluded to earlier, like Seed level, Series A, B, etc. Which maybe rather foreign to people who have not been through this process as yet. The bulk of our time will be spent on the tools that we're preparing. These will range from tools more involved in engaging early interest amongst investors like an elevator pitch and an executive summary, and then once you're able to get in the room and fully engage prospective investors, the PowerPoint deck is your key tool, of course. And there are, I'll mention a little bit about other tools for preparing for due diligence, although most of that would be a discussion for another time. And finally in the last section, I'll talk about delivery skills, you know, the art of presenting yourself in a proper way to engage interest with investors. I want to speak to you a little bit about myself which might set a little context for the discussion. I was lucky enough to spend the first half of my career at Intel Corporation between 1980 and 1997, during boom years of that corporation under the leadership of Andy Grove as CEO and Gordon Moore as Chairman for a large part of that time. Two of, what I would argue, two of the greatest leaders in American business in the last century. And part of that time was spent at a corporate strategy organization and it gave me great visibility into the process of determining what business got funded and what didn't. And little would I know back in those days, that it was preparing me for the world I live in today which I'll talk about here in a moment. I am today, a member of the Band of Angels organization here in Silicon Valley, which is Silicon Valley's oldest organized angel investment group. And, I would argue, the most esteemed of the angel investor groups. And really, the bulk of my day outside of the Band of Angels is spent in advisory roles and consulting roles with startup companies, and inevitably part of my time spent with them is helping prepare for and engage in their investor discussions. Let's face it, raising money for early admin stage companies is one of the most challenging things the CEO and executive team do. With me I find the whole process quite intellectually stimulating. I am also involved in many non-profit activities that are almost all involving the entrepreneurial process. No time to talk more about that now, because we do need to get started. By the way, for any of you who may be active on social media, if you have any comments to make, even pro or con, feel free to jump on Twitter for . . . Here listed is my own Twitter handle as well as that at Illumeo. And in closing of my introductory remarks, I want to mention four things. That my goal is by the end of this presentation, there are four things that you will understand well and will absolutely remember after the fact. First off, it's not about you, it's about them. And this is my catch phrase to say that you have to remember that in every investor engagement, they have their level of their interests and their own strategy for the kinds of investments they want to do, and it's incumbent on us to be prepared to match their needs rather than really the other way around. So, always be aware of who you're talking to. Second, and this will only be clear only after you hear some of the discussion later on. It's a metaphor, focus on the angel, not the marble. And in summary, the idea here is that you need to carve away all the information that you'd be tempted to present that's not fundamentally delivering the message of why your company makes a great investment for them. Third, investors fund companies, not products. One of my big messages for you today is to ask you not to emphasize overwhelmingly your product, but rather emphasize overwhelmingly the company that you are going to build around the product and your ability to build that company. And it's incumbent on you to convince the investors of your ability to do so. And fourth, it's almost funny to say this because you would think it would be obvious, but the message is tell them how they're gonna make a fortune. And surprisingly it's very common for entrepreneurs speaking to investors to leave it as an exercise for the listener to decide how the fortune will be made. And don't make them translate. Don't make them make their own assumptions. You've got to guide them directly to this conclusion, that your company is an opportunity for a huge return on their investment.

Course Collections

This course is included in the following Course Collections:

Learning Objectives

  • Discover how to create the key documents and presentation materials required for effective angel/venture fundraising
  • Recognize how to utilize your network to engage potential investors
  • Identify a framework for presenting your company to investors that will maximize interest and potential for investment

 

 

23 Reviews (59 ratings)Reviews

5
Member's Profile
This course is super helpful with very applicable insights and document templates to craft a compelling story for potential investors. I am constantly reminding myself: 1) do research before meeting a potential investor; 2) "It is not about me, it is about them." It already has helped me on one meeting with a potential angel investor. I was open and receiving enough for him to spend over an hour and twenty minutes with me to help me to clarify my pitch and story. Thanks, Bruce!
4
Member's Profile
Thought it was a great course and drove home many of my own views, plus added some "ah-ha's" that enhanced my own approach (I have some fundraising experience as an entrepreneur). Hit all the major points, although might have had a slightly heavier/deeper dive on some of those points. That said, I would recommend the course to new fundraisers as they start their company/idea journey.
5
Anonymous Author
excellent content, not just limited to VCs for a start-up. These tips apply for presenting a new project or program to internal executives, bankers and more. suggest you change a few slides and title to ..."a winning pitch for xyz.. so that more people watch this course.
5
Anonymous Author
Good course, interesting to get unbiased thoughts from someone on "the other side of the table." Only downside is that 80 minutes is a bit long to only get 1 credit hour based on the 50 minute hour rule
4
Member's Profile
Course sets a really good example of how business should be approached - whether a start-up or blue chip. It all comes back to fundamentals and mission that every employee should understand.
4
Anonymous Author
This is very informative and I come away with information that I can put in use. However, this course runs for 79 minutes and should be given more credit hours should be alloted to it.
5
Member's Profile
Excellent coverage even though the total listening time for all segments exceeded one hour. This definitely complements other VC related courses offered by Proformative.
5
Member's Profile
Even after 18 years in and around startups and investment cycles, I found this a fresh and memorable overview of the essentials in early stage funding success!
5
Anonymous Author
I really enjoyed this presentation. The presenter was clear and easy to follow. I was not too familiar with the topic and feel I learned!
4
Anonymous Author
Basic material and points are common to other advice I have seen, but the emphasis on what's important helps.
5
Anonymous Author
Excellent presentation, easy to follow, perfect detail level, great stories to illustrate points made.
5
Member's Profile
Simple is sophistication, and this presentation achieved that. Very helpful and practical summary.
5
Member's Profile
Great content and excellent moving presentation with great "war stories"
4
Member's Profile
Great summary to help guide your initial corporate fundraising pitch.
4
Member's Profile
great info, perhaps a written bio, instead of the background section?
5
Member's Profile
Very practical and focused on the objective which is fundraising
5
Anonymous Author
Excellent session, engaging instructor and informative content!!
5
Anonymous Author
Having gone through this process this advice is spot on!
3
Member's Profile
should speak about investment process timeline
5
Member's Profile
Good content and well worth the time!
5
Member's Profile
This is an excellent course.
Anonymous Author
Maybe a little too basic.
5
Anonymous Author
very concise

Prerequisites

Prerequisite: Exposure to corporate finance

 

Advanced Preparation: None

 

Education Provider Information

Company:
Illumeo, Inc., 75 East Santa Clara St., Suite 1215, San Jose, CA 95113
Contact:
For more information regarding this course, including complaint and cancellation policies, please contact our offices at (408) 400- 3993 ext. 106, or send an e-mail to .
Course Syllabus
INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
  16:25Art vs. Science of Fundraising
Tools for Investor Prospect Engagement
  7:50Elevator Pitch
  31:33The Art of the Executive Summary
  8:17The Art of the Pitch
CONCLUSION
  9:29Delivery and Course Summary
SUPPORTING MATERIALS
  PDFSlides: Venture Capital Investors
  PDFVenture Capital Investors Glossary/Index
  PDFExecutive Summary Template
REVIEW & TEST
  quizREVIEW QUESTIONS
 examFINAL EXAM