Is It Worth Going After Venture Capital

Let's be frank. It takes about a full month to research, write, polish, and rehearse a good business plan. It will take a further two months to contact, dispatch, and await preliminary judgment from the VCs that you approach. The business plan is not to be undervalued as it provides the thinking and roadmap of how your operation is to operate anyway; but the level of polish required for external acceptance is dramatically different from the worksheet that can be used internally.

With only a one in a hundred chance of success, it makes sense to approach VCs if and only if there is no other recourse or you have a contact within a VC (preferably a number of VCs) who can fast-track your submission and give you firsthand feedback if your application is unsuccessful. I've been on both sides of the VC table. Winning investment requires you to put yourself in the funder's shoes. Make sure you are prepared, presentable, credible, interesting, and your figures add up. Work out who is the key VC representative; it is essential that you win them over.

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