订阅

多平台阅读

微信订阅

杂志

申请纸刊赠阅

订阅每日电邮

移动应用

商业

种子资本筹资入门

Chris Dixon 2011年06月15日

一份写给创业者的种子资本募集指南。

    上周四晚上,我通过网络平台Skillshare开了一堂如何募集种子资本的课程。在漫长的一天后,我对这堂课并没有特别的期待,但课堂反响很好,课程结束时间也超出原计划不少。我想这堂课大获成功是因为受众都是真正的创业者,在课前都做了充分的准备 (他们都是科技博客的热心读者,而且看来已经做了大量研究)。

    下面我简要地列出这堂课的一些笔记。关于风投融资我已写过太多,本不打算再次赘述。但既然我已记下这些笔记,这里不妨与大家分享:

    1. 最好是不需要融资或是先有了产品、用户或客户,然后再进行融资。有过成功的创业经历或曾经进入过成功企业的高层对融资将大有裨益。

    2. 如果情况不是这样,融资就会非常困难,尽管人们(比如媒体)都说现在融资很容易,“每个人都能获得融资。”

    3. 融资是一个锦上添花的过程。最困难的部分是争取到“基础”投资者。此类投资者或投资机构往往承诺提供相当的资本(>10万美元) ,并在科技界或你的目标行业内享有盛誉 (例如,成功的时尚人士投资一家与时尚界相关的初创企业)。

    4. 虽然你很着急,但投资者们却喜欢观望(等待“再翻一张牌看看”)。很多投资者都会等到他们推崇的投资者承诺出资之后,自己才会出手。对创业者来说,这有点左右为难。正如保罗•格拉汉姆所述:

    迄今为止,影响一个投资者对一家初创公司的最大因素是其他投资者的看法。自主做出投资决定的投资者少之又少。任何初创企业的创始人都会告诉你,投资人最常问的问题不是关于创始人或产品,而是“还有谁打算投资?”

    5. 编织网络:

    • 确保你在谷歌(Google)上有良好的搜索结果(这是你在科技方面给人的第一印象)。(博客、LinkedIn和About.me等网络空间上)出色的自我介绍网页和博客/Tweet都能为你的谷歌搜索加分。

    • 积极融入本地科技界。参加聚会。参与组织本地的活动。争取成为本地科技社交网络中的核心人物。

    • 尽可能多地结识企业家和投资者。企业家往往比较容易接触,更能感同身受创业的甘苦,有时还会热情地引荐投资者。

    • 避开那些要求有偿引荐的人(即便是间接的,比如以聘请某家律师事务所作为引荐的条件)。

    • 不要害怕被人视作不自量力,但要保持礼貌;也不要害怕被人拒绝。

    6. 对行业有深刻了解:

    • 固定阅读TechCrunch、Business Insider、GigaOm、Techmeme等科技类的博客,以及弗莱德•威尔森和马克•舒斯特等人的博客文章(并可回过头去看存档)。通过Twitter时刻关注投资者和创业者的动态 (如果没有头绪,可参考Sulia提供的一些不错的清单,可点击这里这里)。

    • 与任何投资者和企业家见面前都要进行广泛地研究。企业家会乐于听到你曾使用过他们的产品,并给出建设性的意见。这就像是给初为父母者带去了婴儿玩具一样。投资者也会乐于听到你对他们投资组合和投资意向的高见。

    7. 融资规模多大为宜?足以实现一个发展里程碑即可,并要留有一定余地。(更多)

    8. 合理的投资条款是什么样的?理想的条款具有如下特征。你能理解所有的条款,并知晓可转换票据和股票间的区别。大的方面,你不妨花几天时间弄懂初创企业相关法律法规——这里推荐一本不错的入门书籍

    9. 资本类型:战略天使投资人(行业专家),非战略天使投资人(非行业专家,非科技投资人),科技天使投资人,种子资金,风险投资。

    • 风险投资财力雄厚,它们可能对估值不太敏感,但这种投资有时是一种看涨期权,带有一定的风险。(更多)

    • 行业专家确实是科技投资人的完美互补(特别是在b2b公司中)。(更多)

    • 非战略天使投资人(没有相关经验的有钱人)或许无法提供太多帮助,但可能更有耐心,也更能接受“生活创业一体化的企业”。

    • 科技天使投资人和种子资金往往对估值最敏感,但作为补偿,有时会参与后续融资。

    10. 推介:

    • 演示要简短,不要阐述整个商业计划。(更多)

    • 首先推介自己,其次才是创意。(更多)

    • 推介上行空间,而不是一般情况。(更多)

    • 阐述市场规模多用描述性语言,而不是数字 (更多)

    11. 联合创始人:他们提供的精神支持非常重要。找到与你互补的人。尽早确定职责、分股等问题,并记录在案 (法律文件不会损害友谊——只会令友谊长存)。

    12. YC、Techstars这样的孵化器机构非常重要。我认识的曾与孵化器机构有过合作的人,99%都表示值得。

    13. 对于投资者而言,最美妙的莫过于听到“超额认购”。因此,有时从战术角度而言,启动的融资规模不妨小于真正期望的规模。

    Chris Dixon是Hunch的联合创始人,同时也是一位活跃的天使投资人。

    Last night I taught a class via Skillshare (disclosure: Founder Collective is an investor) about how to raise a seed round. After a long day I wasn't particularly looking forward to it, but it turned out to be a lot of fun and I stayed well past the scheduled end time. I think it worked well because the audience was full of people actually starting companies, and they came well prepared (they were all avid readers of tech blogs and had seemed to have done a lot of research).

    I sketched some notes for the class which I'm posting below. I've written ad nausea about venture financing so hadn't planned to blog more on the topic. But since I wrote up these notes already, here they are:

    1. Best thing is to either never needto raise money or to raise money after you have a product, users, or customers. Also helps a lot if you've started a successful business before or came from a senior position at a successful company.

    2. Assuming that's not the case,it is very difficult to raise money, even when people (e.g. press) are saying it's easy and "everyone is getting funded."

    3. Fundraising is a momentum-based process.Hardest part is getting "anchor" investors. These are people or institutions who commit significant capital (>$100K) and are respected in the tech community or in the specific industry you are going after (e.g., successful fashion people investing in a fashion-related startup).

    4. Investors like to wait("flip another card over") while you want to hurry. Lots of investors like to wait until other investors they respect commit. Hence a sort of Catch-22. As Paul Graham says:

    By far the biggest influence on investors' opinions of a startup is the opinion of other investors. There are very, very few who simply decide for themselves. Any startup founder can tell you the most common question they hear from investors is not about the founders or the product, but "who else is investing?"

    5. Network like crazy:

    • Make sure you have good Google results (this is your first impression in tech). Have a good bio page (on your blog, LinkedIn and About.me) and blog/tweet to get Google juice.

    • Get involved in your local tech community. Join meet-ups. Help organize events. Become a hub in the local tech social graph.

    • Meet every entrepreneur and investor you can. Entrepreneurs tend to be more accessible and sympathetic, plus can often make warm intros to investors.

    • Avoid anyone asks you to pay for intros (even indirectly like committing to a law firm in exchange for intros).

    • Don't be afraid to (politely) overreach and get rejected.

    6. Get smart on the industry:

    • Read TechCrunch, Business Insider, GigaOm, Techmeme, Fred Wilson's blog, Mark Suster's blog, etc (and go back and read the archives). Follow investor/startup people on Twitter (Sulia has some good lists to get you started here and here).

    • Research every investor and entrepreneur extensively before you meet them. Entrepreneurs love it when you've used their product and give them constructive feedback. It's like bringing a new parent a kid's toy. Investors like it when you are smart about their portfolio and interests.

    7. How much to raise?Enough to hit an accretive milestone plus some buffer. (more)

    8. What terms should you look for?Here are ideal terms. You need to understand all these terms and also the difference between convertible notes and equity. More generally, it's a good idea to spend a few days getting smart about startup-related law – this is a good book to start with.

    9. Types of capital:Strategic angels (industry experts), non-strategic angels (not industry experts, not tech investors), tech angels, seed funds, VCs.

    • VCs can be less valuation sensitive and have deep pockets but are sometimes buying options so come with some risks. (more)

    • Industry experts can be really nice complements to tech investors (especially in b2b companies). (more)

    • Non-strategic angels (rich people with no relevant expertise) might not help as much but might be more patient and ok with "lifestyle businesses."

    • Tech angels and seed funds tend to be most valuation sensitive but can sometimes make up for it by helping in later financing rounds.

    10. Pitching:

    • Have a short slide deck, not a business plan. (more)

    • Pitch yourself first, idea second. (more)

    • Pitch the upside, not the mean. (more)

    • Size markets using narratives, not numbers. (more)

    11. Cofounders:They are good if for no other reason than moral support. Find ones that complement you. Decide on responsibilities, equity split etc early and document it (legal documents don't hurt friendships – they preserve them).

    12. Incubators like YC and Techstars can be great.99% of the people I know who participated in them say it was worth it.

    13. To investors,the sexiest word in the English language is "oversubscribed." Sometimes it makes tactical sense to start out raising a smaller round than you actually want end up with.

    Chris Dixon is co-founder of Hunch, and is an active angel investor.

 

我来点评

相关稿件

  最新文章

最新文章:

500强情报中心

财富专栏