Building For Founders
Anonymous fund & investor partner reviews by founders for founders.
NPS scores for VC's.
Anonymous fund & investor partner reviews by founders for founders.
NPS scores for VC's.
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It is post-COVID, and meetings are held over calls. By far the worst call ever. He was terribly late, turns out he was in a very noisy environment, declines to postpone, asks us to share data. Investors are busy, so are founders. To my belief, the solution is mutual respect. Just say you're not interested and move on.
Wes was very respectful and honest from the very beginning. He gave great feedback on the business, told us what he likes, what is worrying. It turned out that we do not have an immediate alignment, and Wes was upfront about this. He also went ahead and look for intro potential within his network. No ghosting, engaged with our company updates, upfront about his decision.
Julian is the most genuine, supportive, and helpful investor I have met in my career. He led my company’s Seed round, and made time to chat with me every Tuesday morning for two full years - that’s an incredible commitment compared to every other investor I’ve ever worked with. I fondly remember our conversations - he was bursting with energy and full of ideas for us, from new features we could add to the product to marketing strategies we could try to get the word out. I would leave our calls feeling excited, motivated, and ready to win. When the going inevitably got tough, Julian was our rock - he helped us stay on course and guided us through various difficult times and situations. For that, I am forever grateful. As the years went by and I eventually started a new company, Julian continued to stay in touch and he made numerous helpful intros for me. He had nothing to gain directly from being so helpful, but that speaks volumes about his character - he truly wants to help entrepreneurs succeed. I couldn’t have asked for a better lead investor, and I wholeheartedly recommend him to anyone looking for a partner who will have your back as you build your company.
He cancelled our 2-weeks in advanced scheduled call last minute and sent a mass Bcc style email to every founder he just cancelled. In his email, he said he decided to take a few vacation days that week and will unfortunately not be able to make the meetings. Since he doesn't think he has any remaining meeting time available that month, he will open more slots for the founders when he returns. I guess the founders are supposed to check his calendar periodically to make sure they have a 15 minutes call with him in case he opens up more slots. He must be delusional. Respect for others' time: 0, Communication Skills: 0
Mo is one of those up-and-coming VCs that you don't hear about until you do, and then they're speaking with every notable founder in the blink of an eye. His firm is young (less than a year old) but they've already done about 10 investments. In other cases, this might mean they're rushing - but having gone through many conversations with him and his brother & business partner Ammar, I can say they're thorough and very very informed. I'm not sure if it's their size, the age of the team, or just sheer grit, but these guys do their homework. They come ready with questions and prepared on the industry. I can't confirm, but I'm pretty sure they even did a reference check on me before our first conversation. They seemed to know a lot about me, my business, and who I know. More than the casual LinkedIn glance. My favorite thing about Mo and Ammar is their speed. When they like something, they move on it. It's really just the two of them - no big IC, no board, no annoying slow GPs always in Tahoe - just two hard working VCs who can write a check the same day they decide they want to do the investment. No approvals required. A huge factor here is that Mo and Ammar have run and are actually running businesses while running Adapt. More so than the VC who founded a company in the dot com boom, they're actually doing it now in 2020. This means they understand what CAC is really like these days. They can relate to the difficulty of FB ads leading up to an election. They get it. They also are able to offer a lot of help other VCs can't. When I told them I wanted to find an influencer or two to work with, they had an intro ready for me the next day to an influencer they'd already worked with that had strong ROI. Hard to beat tangible value-add like that. Overall, I would rate Mo and Ammar 10/10. They're the type of investors you want to go back to and ask to participate in your next round.
Jonathan is a great investor. I have had the pleasure of meeting a lot of investors, and he tops my list. He is very sharp and seems to be always thinking one step ahead, so for founders that pitch him, you should be two steps ahead of his question. Jonathan is very much a no-BS guy. He's still very friendly, but does not waste time with frilly intros talking about the weather. He gets right to the point - and I can tell from my conversations with him that this is out of respect for the founder. He has been a founder himself and understands how busy we are. He's respectful in how he operates - he's quick with his questions, quick with his follow-up, and respectfully fast with his decision. He does not take pitches to be nice - if you're talking with him, it's because he's interested. That said, I would not be shy about approaching him. He'll tell you right off the bat if it's worth the time to continue the conversation or not. I really respect that. Overall, I'd rate Jonathan a 10/10. This is after speaking with many many investors. He is one of the sharpest in the valley, respectful of the founder's time, and quick in his follow up and decisions. If you think you're in the ballpark of what he's interested in at Foundation (consumer, right stage, traction numbers, etc) I would reach out and suggest a conversation.
Lucy has opened doors to incredible people and investors we never thought we would be able to meet. She is extremely well-connected and unforgettable. Additionally, Lucy’s design sense is amazing! A huge benefit to having Lucy adding value so early on. Lastly, Lucy is extremely in-touch with all the latest and greatest tech coming out, she's watching everything and her knack for seeing opportunity is unreal. Having her eye on products related to our industry has been very helpful and she's always on top of connecting our company with potential leads.
As a founder I really enjoyed having Antoine as an investor because beyond just wanting the company to grow quickly, I felt that he always genuinely cared about me, my team, and the mission we were on. He had high conviction and empathy which made it much easier to work through the difficult times and decisions with him. Even if Antoine didn't have answers or experience with a specific thing we were tackling, I always felt like he was a teammate who would help us solve problems and/or find others to bring in that could help us whenever we wanted that. Inovia is an emerging brand in the Bay Area and I would definitely choose Antoine as an investor again because he acts more like a trusted partner vs just an investor who sits back an hopes your company grows.
Sophia is a ghoster. Says she supports women in tech, but has a bad rep with female founders for how often she ghosts. We had the same experience. After few exchanges she led us into dead leads, wasted our time and just disappeared. We know how these things work - classism and closed circles. She is too busy with making sure her public image is on brand.
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