Wharton Entrepreneurs Workshop #38 — “The Importance of Picking the Right Investor” with Carl Showalter from Opus Capital

A relatively recent phenomenon has complicated the investment landscape facing the early-stage company founder looking for funding. There used to be a time not too long ago when a founder had only two investor categories to choose from: angels or institutional VCs. Today, it is not that simple.

The ecosystem of investors in the Bay Area includes angels, super angels, incubators and accelerators, corporate VCs, the institutional VC community (which itself has fragmented into side funds and specialties), crowdfunding, “demo” days, and the like. Even private equity firms and investment banking firms are coming “down market” to invest in startups, presenting the founder with a bewildering array of choices.

In this Wharton Entrepreneurs Workshop, Carl Showalter, a partner at Opus Capital and an experienced investor with a long history in Silicon Valley, offers insights and wisdom on how a founder should think about the fundraising process.

  • When is the right time to raise funding?
  • How much money should the founder raise?
  • What part of the investor ecosystem should a founder go to first?
  • Is crowdfunding as good as it looks?
  • What business models still require bootstrapping as a first step?
  • When is the right time to bring in an institutional VC?

Carl speaks to these and important questions that every founder must answer.

Posted: May 28, 2014

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