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How to pitch to a VC

Sequoia Capital makes visible what they look for, both in a company and in a business plan. It is rare to find an A-list VC being this open – this is a great resource, especially for first-time entrepreneurs.

  • Subin Mathew

    I am looking for a consultant for a startup in Chennai. Appreciate if any one can provide the contact details


  • Arun kumar Jha

    I am Major Arun Kumar Jha, a 36 yr old serving officer of the Indian Army. I have completed more than 15 yrs of active service, and am presently posted in Bhatinda in Punjab. I am contacting you in connection with certain plans coming to me for encouraging agriculture related entrepreneurship in the fertile areas of North Bihar.

    After his MA, PhD in Sanskrit in 1969, my father moved (migrated) to work in the Kaivalyadhama Yoga Research Institute in Lonavla in Pune district of Maharashtra from our original village Babu Pali in Madhubani district of North Bihar. I was born (and brought up) there in 1971, and studied in Don Bosco, Lonavla and in Fergusson College, Pune before going for my Military training.


    The plans envisage encouraging the villagers of North Bihar to set up food processing units (FPUs), and providing Packaging and Marketing facilities to them on a large scale.

    Specific areas in North Bihar (South of the Himalayas), in the immediate and distant future, WILL be flood prone due to Global warming and the melting of the Himalayan glaciers. It is also a known fact that the land in the plains of North Bihar is very fertile due to the silt deposited by the rivers from the Himalayas over the years. However, the infrastructure is under developed.

    It is proposed to raise Seven Packaging Parks in identified (flood free) areas in North Bihar. This can easily be found through Satellite Photo analysis, and research of the history on the ground. These Packaging Parks will carry out Packaging of the processed food products prepared by local entrepreneurs (FPUs). The HQ of the enterprise (which will be located in Pune city in Maharashtra) will coordinate the marketing of the products in the Packaging Parks in North Bihar; communication being over Internet and Telephone. Systems of a Brigade HQ of the Indian Army, modified to suit the requirements, will be applied in all Packaging Parks. I will myself raise the first such Packaging Park in the identified area in Madhubani district starting from 31 May 2011 (at the earliest) if everything goes as per the plans coming to me.

    To carry out their functions, the Packaging Parks will have 2 Cold Storages, Packaging Plants, a Vehicle Park with complete repair facilities, a Main office, a Medical Inspection Room, a Shopping Complex and other structures revealed from experience. Ideally speaking; during the period from 31 May 2009 to 31 May 2010, I plan to attend courses in CFTRI, (Central Food Technology Research Institute) in Mysore, assemble the Team required; and frame all Legal guidelines for the project. From 01 June 2010 to 31 May 2011, I plan to gain physical experience in a functioning FPU in North Bihar.


    These plans involve funds of approx $ 40 Million (Rs 160 Crore) per Packaging Park: which works out to $ 280 Million for the entire effort. These funds are presently not available to me. The motivation is purely spiritual and is powered by my desire to realise the aim of my taking on this Human birth in India (through the grace and inspiration of HH Sri Sri Ravi Shankar). The enterprise will be a humble offering of mine to Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

    I have become a member of TiE, Mumbai to get in contact with some Venture Capitalist(s) to provide the required funds. However, it would be rather preferable if Reliance Industries (Mr. Mukesh Ambani) got to know of these plans, and contacted me for all the details of my plans at bpfp@rediffmail.com. His email is not available to me. Alternatively, you could direct me to the source of the required funds (Venture Capitalists or Angel Investors) to whom the details of the above plans could be sent.


    Besides the obvious indications of profits, the enterprise promises many other socially relevant benefits; the main ones being an eventual decrease in migrations from (North) Bihar, rise in the economic indicators of the region, and enhancing the Food Security situation of India. The benefits are likely to eventually result in incentives from the Govt of Bihar, and from the Govt at the Centre for the enterprise.

    These plans have been divulged to you since you appeared capable of being of assistance in this project. I would be immensely grateful if you could be of any help in this project; either by bringing these plans and my email to the attention of Mr. Mukesh Ambani, or directing me to a Venture Capitalist/ Angel Investor with the funds and policy of investing in start-ups like this one.

  • Prakash

    What can be ownership pattern for a start-up?

    I left my day-job 4 months ago to start my own venture. I got some success in it. I have developed a software for financial market and a website to support my venture. Now, I need Venture Capital or Angel Investment to take my project to the next level.

    But before that I have some concerns whose answers I could not find anywhere else. Please advise me on the following:

    - When VC invest in my venture what will be the ownership pattern?

    - I have developed the product/solution and tested in the market too. Proof-of-concept is ready. But I do not have enough money left to incorporate my company. If VC help me with it, will they allow me to retain a controlling stake of the company.

    - How will this situation pan out like – me with 60% of company shares and they with 40%

    I have just no idea, please help me with it. I want to have enough information on it before I approach any VC or Angel Investor.

    Please give me some guidance on this aspect. Thank you.

  • For Toybank SEC

    Let me know if theres a place for starters to pose questions or general/specific places of stuck.Would be glad to pose these questions there…
    also feel free to comment if you find that approach itself is entirely faulty
    Situation 1. Broad concept, total market size, market need is in place-But the solution results in “new” Products /offerings.
    Problem -How do we know adoption will happen and its worth the effort.

    2. What is the cheapest/ cash positive approach to test the same(small test if it will click with the target audience)
    -more like concept proving
    ya incase of details -poojap9atgmail

  • http://www.proto.in Vijay

    Alok Mittal, did a session on this During Proto. SE. The video and Transcript will be up in a few days. Will link it up once its ready.

  • http://www.rehanyarkhan.com RYK

    I personally believe that this list from Sequoia is misleading. It is exactly this sought of data that is misguiding entrepreneurs into contacting VCs in the early stage of their business. This list portrays that a VC has excellent understanding of the space and is willing to take a high risk and enter a business based SOLELY on concept and all the factors mentioned in the list.

    Instead the VC model is very different. Most VCs are essentially composed of teams of finance specialists, who in their 40 year career have to look at over 100 industries and atleast 5 – 7 at any given time. This makes it impossible for them get very deep into any industry no matter how hard they try. Even VC partners who were once entrepreneurs will be looking at multiple industries once they change their job to being a VC, and this will automatically dilute their knowledge of an industry.

    VCs thus need to work with slightly more mature ideas with PROOF OF CONCEPT firmly in place. In short they need to see traction in your project and it is this traction which becomes their lead factor in influencing their decision to invest in a project.

    So what should an entrepreneur at the very early stage do? He needs to contact an angel investor who is active in his industry and explain his concept using exactly the factors mentioned in Sequoia’s list. This will work because the angel having indepth knowledge of the industry can work on concepts.

  • Dilip

    NEA- US Indo ventures, provides you a very dilligent business plan template as well : http://www.neaiuv.com/resourcecenter_templates.htm

  • Arvind Raj

    This is very useful information, when we think about business plan or approach to VC. Here is another good resource for first-time entrepreneurs.http://www.erasmic.com/pres/raising_seed_capital.pdf

  • jerry

    this is been there since 2 yrs on their site atleast