How to be ready for investors funding for your Startup

Modern thin line design concept for STARTUP website banner. Vector illustration concept for business startup, new product and service development, startup company, crowdfunding.

Being Investor Ready is the moment when potential investors, governments, banks or lenders believe that you are worth investing in and that you are ready for the next step. Also: becoming Investor Ready is the proof that what you want to do is commercial, effective and will bring value back to an investor.

Before we dive into this, it’s useful to take into considerations some sobering, but also promising statistics from CB Insights on startup fundraising:

  • The average seed round is $700,000.
  • 28% of seeded startups eventually exited via merger, acquisition or IPO within the first six rounds.
  • 70% eventually failed or stopped seeking (and perhaps needing) funding during this time.
  • Less than 1% became unicorns (i.e. were eventually valued at $1B or more, although Slack, AirBnB and Uber were among them)

We asked Carola Torrente, Investment Program Manager of YES!Funded, to reach us for a chat and give some useful advice to all the young entrepreneurs out there.

How to be ready for investors:

1. Build a Team

2. Find your Market

3. Develop your Product

4. Fix your Finance

5. Know your Value

1. Build a Team

You can have the best idea, but you need a great team to bring it to the market. Did you know that in 3rd place in the ranking of the Top 20 Reasons why a startup fails is not having the right team?

So, the first question you should ask to yourself is: does your team have the necessary competences to make your business a success? Read this great article to find some inspiration.

be investor ready
Image via NeilPatel

2. Find your Market

Some questions you need to ask yourself to deal with your target market:

  • Do you have a clear view on the pains and needs of your target customers?
  • Why is your product or service unique?
  • Is the market saturated or there is room for your idea?

Many startups think their idea is so unique that it has no competitor. First of all, remember: competition is good. Then, start your market research simply by using the free online research tools like GoogleQuoraRedditDigg and many more.

A very important word you hear when looking for investments is traction. As Kane Thomas highlighted in his great article:

“Traction is the most important factor which determines whether your idea will be backed by investors or not. It means progress. Investors want to see that your idea is not static, and that you’re working on it. You need to show them progress in terms of product development, management teams, revenues, and all other aspects of your venture.”

A few quick examples:

  • pilot with paying customers
  • letter of intent from a big corporate

3. Develop your Product

It’s important to show to your potential investors that you know what your Most Valuable Product (MVP) looks like. If you already have it, what other must have nice-to-have features you will include?

Make a realistic development map and include, besides timeline, the amount of funding you need.

be investor ready
Image via HBR

4. Fix your Finance

It’s easy to put a number down on paper, but it’s more important to ensure you know why you need it. You don’t want to ask for too much or too little. Investors will want to know how much money you spend and at which rate. Look at this great video by Kauffman and learn more about finance for your startup.

Another thing that investors positively acknowledge is if you invested your own money. Why? Because how can someone trust you if you have not even put money into your idea?

5. Know your Company Value

Set the price for the shares you are willing to give away. I know, it is not so obvious. Many young entrepreneurs wonder how they evaluate their idea in economic terms. Unfortunately, there’s not an exact formula for doing it. For a startup, this is particularly difficult, because it’s almost impossible to estimate:

  • The future value of the company
  • When the company will be worth that much
  • The probability of it ever being worth that much

Having an idea of the value of your company will help you set the price for your company rather than someone telling you how much it’s worth.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here