One of the many great things about vacations is reading books. Vacation is the one time that I can really prioritize reading books (as opposed to everything else I read).
I just finished Scott Kupor‘s Secrets Of Sand Hill Road, a book for entrepreneurs about rasing capital from venture firms.
Scott makes the point numerous times in the book that the capital raising process is asymmetric for entrepreneurs in that they do it a few times in their career and VCs do it every day.
That is true for the pitch meetings, the negotiation process, and the post financing relationship too.
What Scott does in this book is break down every part of the process and explain it in plain english so that entrepreneurs can understand what’s going on and why it matters to them.
That last part is important, this book is written for entrepreneurs, not VCs.
Scott uses real world examples, mostly investments made over the last decade by his firm A16Z, to make the lessons he is delivering more “real.”
And he uses spreadhseet examples in one chapter and shows how various events can change the cap table for everyone.
It’s very much a “how to” book, more practical than theoretical.
There have been other books written about this topic, I like Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson’s Venture Deals, which is on its third edition now.
Jeff Bussgang’s Mastering The VC Game is also great.
You could teach an MBA or undegraduate course on capital raising for entreprenuers with these three books.
It would be a great course.
If you plan to be raising venture capital for your startup and don’t have the benefit of experience or a fantastic course on the topic, I would strongly recommend you pick up Scott’s book, or all three books, and spend some time reading them now or on your next vacation.