What’s the best way to raise the right amount of money?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

First, you need to raise the right amount of capital. A small company shouldn’t raise 100 million dollars, even if Great Late Stage Fund is very eager to cut you a check. Raising too much can haunt you. Map out your operating expenses for one year, multiply that figure by 1.5, and ask for that, as a first approximation.

What’s the best way to raise money?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

There’s a romantic notion that the only thing that matters is product and that you can devote yourself to that entirely. That is false. In fact, fully half of your job is selling the company because the CEO is the only one who can actually pitch effectively (no VC wants to be pitched by the VP of Sales).

What’s the best way to pitch your company to investors?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

Tell a story – and try to do it first without relying on your deck. People like stories. Our brains are wired to respond them. We recall facts better when they are embedded in narrative. Why did you start your company? What do you want to achieve? Then drape the facts around that skeleton.

What’s the best way to pitch your company to investors?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

One of the most important things to understand is that, like all people, VCs are different people at different times of day. It helps to pitch as early as possible in the day. This is not a throwaway point. Disregard it at your peril

What’s the best way to pitch your company to investors?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

Just make an affirmative statement about what you do and why it’s important. SpaceX has a great elevator pitch: “Launch costs haven’t come down in decades. We slash them by 90%. The market is $XXbn.” (Contrast this with: “We’re NASA meets Toyota!”)

What’s the best way to get introductions to investors?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

Tactically, the first thing to do is find someone who does need to make investments. That can mean finding a senior associate or a principal for your first pitch, not a senior partner. This contravenes the conventional wisdom that holds that you should not to pitch junior people.

What’s the best way to get introductions to investors?

Bruce Gibney (Former Partner @ Founders Fund)
Peter Thiel’s CS183: Startup – Class 8 Notes Essay

Another route you could take is the cold pitch. It’s very simple: You just e-mail your deck to submissions@givenVC.com or call their main line. The only problem with this route is that it has an almost zero percent chance of working. Your pitch will be ignored upon receipt.