Early Exits Workshop – Silicon Valley Band of Angels

BY Basil Peters

This was a special presentation of the Early Exits workshop for the Band of Angels in Silicon Valley.

The Band was probably the first angel investor group in America and is still considered by many to be the most prestigious. About a hundred angels attended this event.


Part 1-1 Angel Investing in the 21st Century

  • How I got started on early exits
  • Building a 5 year early stage “VC” fund
  • Successful investing requires two things
  • Angel investing is still new
  • What angels used to think
  • The traditional VC model is broken
  • Angels and VCs are quite different
  • VC fund math
  • Unwritten contracts with investors

Part 1-2 What Happens when VCs Co-Invest?

  • Time from VC financing to M&A exits
  • Angels or VCs but not both
  • Are VCs ever a good idea?
  • When do VCs make sense?
  • Just say “No” to moon shots

Part 1-3 Most M&A Exits are Under $20 million

  • Why this is happening now
  • Under $20 million is easy
  • Big companies have so much cash
  • Big companies are VC’s direct competitors
  • Google Wants Even Earlier Exits

Part 1-4 Investing in Internet Time

  • How early can you sell?
  • When you can prove the model is often the optimum time
  • Don’t ride it over the top

Part 1-5 Startup Economics

  • Why it costs so little today
  • Open source software
  • Other fundamental changes
  • Our 21st century economy
  • The “New” angel model

Part 2-1 Exit Strategy

  • Focusing on exits is healthy
  • Simple model of a company
  • Planning for early exits
  • Exits are not well understood
  • What kind of company is it?

Part 2-2 Financing Today’s Startups

  • Who actually finances startups?
  • First exit strategy, then finance
  • Why the exit strategy comes first
  • Angel syndication
  • Term sheets can kill
  • Foundational philosophies
  • Angels as financial partners

The PowerPoint for this talk is online here.