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Raising Money On AngelList: 21 Tips From Two Active Angels (onstartups.com)
68 points by nwest on Aug 10, 2011 | hide | past | favorite | 15 comments



This is kind of O.T but I've never really understood this:

"Don't wait too late in your rounds fund raise before you apply"

When you "do a round" is there some sort of legally binding time and funding limit? Or is this just some kind of self imposed thing (like when you're selling vacuum cleaners door to door and say to the customer "Better get in quick! We only have 5 vacuum cleaners left and they're selling fast!").


Yes, the rounds usually have an end date written into the term sheets.


21. The best thing you can do is get traction

Why is the supposedly most important idea listed last? It's no wonder startups waste time on the wrong things, if this is the way advice is structured.


Sorry about that. The tips weren't listed in any sort of "priority" order. The reason the traction one was last wasn't because it's the least important, but because I thought it was a good way to "close" the article.

Often, the last item in a list like this gets read much more often than the middle items.

In any case, it's a fair point.


I read the Angel List T&C. It says they (the founders of Angel List) have the right to participate in any fundraising up to %50 of the amount raised, on the same terms as others.

This means, if you find an investor who brings something other than money, and you agree to terms that take this into account, the owners of angel list can get in on half of the deal at those terms.

So, would you agree to the same terms with a star like ashton kutcher, or dave mcclure as you would to someone you've never heard of who is just offering money? (Personally, I might not give either of the "stars" better terms, because I would want a venture investment to be about money, not intangibles, but that's me.)

I don't know the people behind angel list, so, lets presume they are great. But I'm wary of entering into a situation where, unless you read the details of the T&C and discover it, you've agreed to give people you don't know half of your funding round, on terms that you might have set based on qualities that the angel list people don't also possess.

This is what prevented me from getting an account there, and without an account it is hard to know much about how angel list works, or what it is like. (so, feel free to enlighten me.)

I'm not bashing them, just expressing a concern that I obviously can't express there (because I'd have to agree to the T&C to open an account.) It's also quite possible I'm wrong or misread the T&C.


Hey, this is Nivi from AngelList. That is a dumb clause. We are changing it. We will also look through the terms for other dumb clauses. I'll follow up on this thread with the revisions later today.

People submit bug reports to us all the time. This is the first time we've gotten a legal one. Thank you.


We went through the terms and deleted the following:

DELETED: "We also have the right to invest in any business on the same terms as are offered to Investors, or on better terms if we are able to negotiate them with Entrepreneurs, and we have no obligation to make those investment opportunities available to anyone else."

It was dumb. We also made a few other changes. Let us know if you have any other feedback http://angel.co/terms

We've taken small allocations in a few investments on the site but we've had to talk our way into the deal like every other investor in the world.

The terms are still not perfect nor will they ever be. I would like to rewrite and simplify them one day but that might be wishful thinking.

Thanks to our counsel for the quick fixes. And thanks for the bug report.


Awesome. Time elapsed between the reporting of the bug, acknowledgement, resolution and release: < 3 hours.


Really. I'm half tempted to start a startup just to be able to use a service that is that responsive. Anyone want to push forward with the Trails version of Google Street with me? :-)


This is an example of great customer service. AngelList is a marketplace product. We and the investors are users/customers.

The clause was probably an idea that sounded good eons ago when they started AngelList and now makes no sense at all.

No excuses or delays. Nivi iterates immediately and agrees to update us here. Issue squashed. Trust maintained...even improved.

I love seeing role models role-model the fundamentals of running a startup.


Wow. Imagine if DropBox dealt with problems and potential PR disasters this way...

I was moments away from completely writing off AngelList when I read the parent comment. Now they seem cool. Disaster averted.


Thanks for the response! I'm sure having you as an investor would be an asset, it was just having it as a requirement that concerned me.


Everybody in the round gets in at the same terms. I've invested in 50+ deals and never had one person get preferential treatment like that.


Yes, everyone gets in on the same terms, but you also have a choice about who you agree to sell to, presuming you have enough interest to do the round. If I'm raising $100k, and you, dave mcclure and donald trump are all willing to put up $50k, I'm going to pick you and dave mcclure, and exclude donald trump because I don't want him as an investor in my company. If the Angel List founders participated, then they might put up $50k, and reduce the participation of you and dave mcclure to $25k each, when you wanted to buy a larger chunk.


From what I understand, signing up and creating a startup profile are different tasks. For example, i've already signed up for AL, but have yet to actually create my next startup profile or actively pursue funding. I figured it's a way to take a peek w/o any commitments.

Your point though is well taken though.




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