145. 1st Institutional VC Fund Raised– Key Learnings (Semil Shah)

Semil Shah Full Ratchet First Institutional VC Fund Raised

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Semil Shah of Haystack joins Nick to discuss 1st Institutional VC Fund Raised– Key Learnings.  We address questions including:

  • Maybe we can start off with how your investment focus has evolved since the last time you joined us.
  • What are your thoughts on how seed has split into pre-seed, seed, seed extension, and post seed?
  • Are you investing once with a company or reserving for these various stages within seed?
  • You just closed fund 3… tell us about the first two funds that set the stage.
  • Would you do things differently if you could go back?
  • Which raise was the hardest?
  • How did the expectations of LPs change from the early funds to the institutional fund?
  • What surprised you most about the raise?
  • Did you connect w/ prospectives through referrals, cold calls, a combination?
  • Walk us through the metrics… how many targets, meetings, avg commitment amt, etc.
  • Did you ever think you might not complete the raise?
  • What’s the best advice you got on the raise and who’d you get it from?
  • In our first interview, you talked about how you couldn’t get a full-time job at a venture firm. I’m sure you’ve had plenty of offers as you’ve built a track record. Did you ever consider making the jump?
  • When I sent my fund deck to you, you said “Awesome and looks good. As I always say, the deck matters much less than having capital partners who believe in you” For anyone listening that aspires to raise… talk about what you meant by this comment.

 

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