May 31st 2013: The day when LetsVenture was registered with Sanjay Jha and me as co-founders. The passion then was to make Startup Funding Easy; to make the process of early stage fund raise easy, transparent, and efficient for investors and founders.
The last 4 years feel like yesterday – there have been deep learnings, new insights revealed and a lot of progress. Along with some great friends we met on the way – believers, supporters and evangelists who helped us build LetsVenture to what it is today. My personal Thank you to everyone who believed that good quality startups and marquee investors would eventually invest online in India.
If LetsVenture was a fund which invested into every LV deal, our 2014 portfolio would give us a 2.9X multiple on our capital based on today’s Fair Market Value (a 43% IRR)
Today we have made Startup Funding Easy – one transaction at a time. If LetsVenture was a fund which invested into every LV deal, our 2014 portfolio would give us a 2.9X multiple on our capital based on today’s Fair Market Value (a 43% IRR!). 20% of our startups have raised their next round (bridge, Pre-Series A and Series A). We spent zero dollars on user acquisition as most of our growth has been organic and referral based.
In the last 6 months, we walked away from 2 deals (syndicated closed deals) after the team had worked hard to ensure the round closed. In both cases, there was resistance from the founder in completing the due diligence, and not keeping the lead investor informed. As a platform where our core value is to create a trusted marketplace, this was a breach of business protocol. I am bringing this up so that as an investor you know, that protecting your interest continues to be our highest priority. However protecting investor interest does not mean we don’t protect founder interest – we did see multiple instances when founders were unaware of what a balanced term sheet looks like. Founders did not have a benchmark for startup governance. That’s why we open sourced all startup related documents – advisory agreements / esop agreements, term sheet / SHA and SSA. Besides this, the technology platform helps match investor investment thesis to startup profiles. This is now machine learning based, and we are continuing to include neural network intelligence to provide better recommendations and match made startups.
As we look ahead, I believe the opportunity is more exciting today.
As we look ahead, I believe the opportunity is more exciting today. Over the last 2 years, we have seen better quality founders start ventures, angel entry price correct and higher engagement from investors online. In the next 2 years, our goal is to make “Angel Investing Easy”. Work on investor portfolio – from startup reporting, to helping the portfolio raise their next round and making customer connects. Today we are enabling angel funded startups raise rounds from 1.5 – 3/5m on the platform. With a large number of institutional investors, family funds and micro funds on the platform, our focus includes larger round sizes on the platform.
There is a lot to be done – with our business fundamentals in place, a strong advisory and operating board, a core team that passionately works to treat every deal with priority, we do believe that we will continue to be a key player in the startup ecosystem.
Thanks for patiently reading!
CEO and Co-Founder LetsVenture