As a founder, realize this, you’re presenting the investor with an opportunity.

...it’s NEVER the other way around.

Present the opportunity.

Keep. It. Moving.

And if you have a 10x product on your hands...even better.
Some founders raise crazy rounds and they don’t necessarily have a “10x product”, but they DO have a strong acquisition product on their hands and intelligent investors love that as well.

As a founder, either have a 10x product or a product that solves a fundamental problem...
And has general applicability, whether in a niche market or across multiple markets.

The product may not be 10x better, but if it solves a problem and you’re willing to build for 3-5-7+ years, you should be able to raise a rationale amount.
Case study: @paystack!!! LET’S GOOOOOOOO DIASPORA!!!! 😍😍😍

BABY IM A FIGHTER, NEVER BACKIN DOWN.
Also, be very transparent with firms/investors and board partners on how long you want to be the operating founder/CEO of your company.

If you don’t want to be at the operating helm for too long, you really don’t have to.
You can always fall into an advisory, chairman, or president role long-term.

Just because you’re the founder doesn’t mean you have to be the operator.

You have options my friend.

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More from @timsalau

16 Oct
Fundraising is like dating.

As a founder, you’ll meet a lot of investors.

You’ll pitch them, you may even show them a beautiful demo.

Some will pass.
Some will fail to follow-up.
Some will follow-up and just be very candid. “Pass”.
Here’s the thing...as a founder, you’re actually not waiting for their permission.

You did what you’re supposed to do, you presented the opportunity. You received feedback and hopefully, you kept building.

Great investors are a dime-a-dozen. They always stay top of mind.
As a founder, you’re actually looking for signal, you don’t want non-believers on your cap table.

In fact, you need to be able to parse out here investors from values-aligned investors.
Read 5 tweets
16 Oct
Whenever you’re pitching investors, please do not play the bright eyed happy to be here go lucky founder role lol.

Be candid. Be crisp. Present the opportunity.

Show conviction.
If they pass, they pass.
Some may even pass twice.

So what?

You have a movement to build.
Keep building homie! ❤️❤️❤️
Keep building sis! 🤣🤣🤣.
Read 4 tweets
16 Oct
Good investors, especially the ones at really big firms, actually always pass on companies they really like, but they never stop tracking progress.

Their radar is always on.

They always tend to strike when the start-up is HOT, but honestly they have to fight to...
get a position on the cap table by then.

By then, for some, it’s just too late.

Great investors, specifically the ones at big firms that commit chunky checks, proactively build the relationship overtime.

They know their time is coming. Lol.
Great investors don’t want to be forgotten.

They always stay top of mind. 🤓
Read 5 tweets
16 Oct
As a CEO and Founder, you’re going to have to be ready to tell the story of your company, on the spot.

Don’t be scared to write it down somewhere.

Also, you can just tweet it too you know?

No need to write a novel. Lol.

You’re a founder, not Selena Gomez.
Keep building.
Only write a novel if you want to share and distribute it so more people can learn and come on the journey with you ahah.

Or write a novel if your parents are always badgering you about getting a job with x company while you’re building a WHOLE venture.

Lol. Image
Read 4 tweets
16 Oct
“Tim, you seem like a pretty confident guy. Do you think confidence is important when talking to investors? How do?”

I think conviction is important.

As a founder you need to have conviction.

Conviction is not ego.
It just lets investors know you’re the woman, man, or them who is uniquely equipped and positioned to get the job done.

Don’t pitch an investor if you wouldn’t buy what you’re attempting to sell them.

As a founder, you are the customer.

Have conviction.
How so *
Read 5 tweets
15 Oct
The event that actually triggered me to go all in on Guide was actually when I left WeWork as they failed to IPO.

The event that actually triggered us to pivot Guide was COVID.

External market events can actually change your life...for the better.
Both events brought about leadership lessons that I will NEVER forget.

Thank you WeWork & COVID-19.

Thank you.

You’ve both made me a better leader.
COVID actually expanded our companies pre-money valuation by 1000000000x.

Pre-COVID, our company wasn’t worth a strong investment. We didn’t have a strong business and we were building an app in a commodities market.
Read 5 tweets

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