Situation: A CEO wants to raise money to expand the company. Target investors will be private equity investors with a minimum investment threshold of $10 million. What are the key points to make in an investor presentation?
Advice from the CEOs:
- To demonstrate the company valuation, and the potential increase in value to investors, calculate the EBITDA trend for the last 3-4 years and project it out for the next 5 years.
- The valuation is the whole company – not just the investment piece.
- Show the increase in exit valuation with and without the target investment. Show impact.
- Show revenue and EBITDA on the company’s current trend and what this will become with the investment.
- An alternate view: Don’t focus on valuation. The company is profitable and growing. Pitch the plan and the financials associated with the plan. Let the potential investor come back with an investment proposal and terms. KISS – Keep It Simple Silly – take all the risk out.
- There are periodic Shake the Money Tree events in Silicon Valley, sponsored by SVASE – Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs. Start attending these.
- Ask for advice – not money. There is an adage in Silicon Valley is that if you ask for money you get advice; whereas if you ask for advice you get money.
- There’s a subtle difference between the two asks. The point is that potential investors don’t just want to invest money. They want to be involved in the decisions as to how the company spends that money. By asking for advice, a potential investee demonstrates that they respect the opinions and input of potential investors and will listen to them.