Start at the End – Your Exit Strategy – Part 3
Highlights of Start at the End – Your Exit Strategy – Part 3:
- Why you need an exit strategy right from the beginning – and certainly before you contact your first prospective investor.
- Why it is essential to check the DNA compatibility before you accept money from investors.
- How a mistake with DNA compatibility can be fatal and how I almost lost my first company to the VCs.
- Developing an exit strategy – the most important element in your business plan.
- Many companies have exit strategies even though sometimes the entrepreneurs don’t know it.
- The exit strategy affects operational decisions on almost a daily basis.
- The exit is just another business process – like a sales plan, financing plan or product development plan.
- The exit strategy is the plan for the entire business.
- Start at the end – ask yourself what you want to do with your company.
- Exit strategies can be very simple – often just a few sentences.
- The important thing is to formally check the alignment and get it signed off – at least annually.
- It is surprising how often a company can have a serious mis-alignment but not realize it until the exit is imminent.
- A two day offsite, strategic planning retreat is usually required to build the first aligment on the exit strategy.
- New understandings on the differences between angel investors and traditional Venture Capital funds.
- The most important differences are all related to the exit.
- Traditional Venture Capital funds have exploded in size.
- This forces VCs to put way too much money into each company – why this is bad for entrepreneurs.
- Accepting money from a traditional Venture Capital fund adds about a decade to the exit timeline.
- The unwritten contract between entrepreneurs and traditional Venture Capital investors.
- Why a traditional VC might not let you sell your company for less than $100 million.
Many of the lessons I’ve learned are described in my new book on exit strategies for entrepreneurs and angel investors – www.Early-Exits.com.