Catching the Investor’s Eye

Feb. 7, 2020

A far cry from the glamour of an investing world popularized by Shark Tank, entrepreneurs today find that the reality of funding is neither as straightforward nor fuss-free. For founders looking to scale their ambitions to Silicon Valley heights, are you putting the right foot forward in attracting calibre investors?

The proof is in the people 

Investors invest in people, not projects. In actual fact, some accelerators take it one step further by identifying high-potentials purely based on the founders’ merit and strength. While the checklist is certainly non-exhaustive, we find that the most promising projects distinguish themselves with their vision, domain expertise and a passion that articulates itself clearly through the team’s commitment to excellence. 

Entrepreneur raises $2M with a 5 slide presentation about nothing 

Chasing tornadoes and blue oceans

For bright-eyed founders starting off on their journey, opportunity and risk can be two sides of the same coin: The greater the challenge, the greater the returns⁠. The same principle applies when coming to understanding your market potential. Spotting the megatrends and defining your target market helps investors recognise the potential of your business. If it works, how big is it going to be?

Global trends: Navigating a world of disruption | McKinsey

<Deeptech> is not always the answer

While rapid development of deeptech itself is a megatrend, instances where blockchain, AI, or IoT  are simply appended to a project’s value proposition may reflect a shallow desire to ride on the trend instead of genuine need for the technology. On the other hand, for example, blockchain-native companies which seamlessly plug their data or protocol into Web 3 hold true promise in the future digital economy. An appreciation of context goes a long way towards boosting investors’ confidence. 

A secret sauce

While metrics such as customer acquisition, fundraising momentum, and partnerships are some of the early indicators of long-term growth, when it comes down to it, investors are looking for a “secret sauce” — the breakout ingredient that differentiates the best from the rest of the crowd. Whether in the form of novel technology, a strong network, or a world-class team, these are all hallmarks of success. 

Finding the right investor is in many ways the same as embarking on a new courtship. It’s natural to feel nervous on the first date, and want to impress by being on your best behaviour. But like all the relationships that eventually stand the test of time, the real secret is to remain authentic and true to yourself. The right one, as they say, will come along just at the right time. 


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