Moving on to our second day of the Silicon Valley Pitch Trek this week, we were received by the market legends Rory O’Driscoll (Partner), Ariel Tseitlin (Partner) and Alex Niehenkex (Principal) at Scale Venture Partners, one of the most experienced VCs in the market. The Scale VP team gave valuable feedback to our entrepreneurs, as well as engaged in an interesting conversation about later stage investments.
As the name Scale VP suggests, the team is focused in investing in startups that have already found their product-market fit, and are over the “does this even work?” phase. Most of Scale VP’s initial capital investment range from $5M to $25M, and are on “early in revenue stage” startups that generate between $200K and $70M in revenue. For those interested understanding the role of VCs at this stage, Rory, Ariel and Alex shared that “80% is about the decision of where to put your chips, 20% is about managing the investment.” The four main activities are financing (e.g. picking the right deals), talent management (e.g. hiring), strategic direction support, and exit. They did have impressive 37 exits since 2000.
Additionally, the Scale VP team shared with our entrepreneurs how startups can be more effective in funding at earlier stages: “It is important to find out who are the Angels and VCs that have the best fit for your startup.” They exemplified that it is important to understand the position of the Angels and VCs regarding stage of startup, kinds of deals, industry, and regular parameters of negotiation used by them.
Thank you very much Rory O’Driscoll, Ariel Tseitlin and Alex Niehenkex for meeting with the Sloan E&I Club for our annual trek! It was a remarkable experience for us.