What We’ve Learned Over the Years: How to Tell if Your Investor is Really Invested

In today’s startup world every fifth person is an investor in some form or fashion. Startup investors call to discuss deal structures, valuations, or serial entrepreneurs.

I can tell the difference between a serious investor and  a not so serious investor. A pretend-startup-investor likes the title of startup investment but won’t commit the time or money to make it successful. An investor that is not serious can waste a startups time.

Here are some telltale signs of a pretend-startup investor

the investor is not interested enough to visit the team’s HQ or meet with the team.

the investor asks about the price first and then figures out the values in the business later if at all.

the investor wants reports but doesn’t read them.

the investor talks about helping the business but never finds a way to contribute.

the investor glances at the due diligence documents but doesn’t dive deep enough to understand the business.

there’s no investment thesis or guiding criteria for their investment choices

they have no network in the target industry or startup world and can do little to help the startup post-funding.


Hall T. Martin

Hall T. Martin is the founder of TEN Capital and a builder of entrepreneur ecosystems by startup funding through angel networks, funding portals, syndicates, and more. Connect with him about fundraising, business growth, and emerging technologies

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