When it comes to raising money for your company, there is probably a lot on your mind. Although it can be stressful, the good news is that there are plenty of ways to increase your odds! When it comes to securing that precious funding, here are some key things to consider
What You'll Learn:
🧑🏽💻 Focus on Leadership
At the end of the day, investors are placing their bets on you and your team. Even though the product is important, the team leads the way to the end result. Sebastian says every leadership team should consist of a diverse set of skills and backgrounds. Think the size of your team is important? Not really! As long as it matches the size of your company and the stage it’s in, Sebastian says you’re good to go. Oh and one last thing - There’s no need to bring your entire team to a pitch. If investors are interested, they will reach out to meet everyone involved
📈 Be Ahead of the Curve
Sebastian has been in the space since 2011, and it’s fair to say trends have changed since then. He says when he started, Solar was all the rage, but now we’re in the era of AI and Blockchain. History repeats itself and technology is constantly changing, so it’s safe to say that trends will continue to cycle. A lot of investors want to get in early which makes companies in emerging industries more likely to receive funding. If you’re not in one, consider implementing technology or pitching how your product could be correlated with the change in trends! This will give you a leg up on competitors, and even yourself.
💵 Consider Alternative Financing
If you have ever seeked an investment, you know how it can feel to give a part of your company away. What if it was possible to raise money without giving anything away? Well, it is - You may already know, but there are a multitude of government programs for startups just like yours. Sebastian highly recommends this, so make sure to do some research.
📃 In Conclusion
Want to raise money? The perfect storm might be considered a strong leadership team, an innovative idea that’s ahead of the curve, and tapping into all the financing options available to you! By focusing on these key elements, you will be raising money in no time. Take it from Sebastian, he works at 3M ;)
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“We want to meet founders to understand why they are doing it [what they’re doing], what drives them, and how they see the future of the company”
“You need to have some diversity in your team from experience, ages, and things like that to make a convincing startup. I think that’s the number one thing we’re looking for”
“The unit economics need to show a way to profitability. Say I make 10, 20, or 50,000 [in revenue] then I can reach profitability because of the logical story about ‘sometime down the road”
About the Guest
New Venture Manager, 3M
Sebastian has been a key player in 3M’s North American Venture arm since 2011. With a PhD in Science and Technology management and a background in entrepreneurial study, Sebastian offers a unique perspective on technology based startups.
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