David Mandel is an emerging tech Super-Angel Investor and managing partner of Emerging Ventures Capital. He has invested in over 500 startups. Before his current career in venture capital, Mr. Mandel built, operated, and exited 4 different successful businesses in the Insurance and Finance industries over 28 years.
[00:01 - 11:08] Getting into Early-Stage Tech Investing
- David built, operated, and exited four different successful businesses in the insurance and finance industries over 28 years
- Exiting his day job to focus on tech investing
- The number one mistake angel investors make is investing in businesses not meant to be venture-backed
[15:10 - 29:32] The Anti-Silicon Valley Investor: How to Find Success in Early-Stage Startups
- Many early-stage startups fail or become "zombies" after taking angel money
- The investment thesis focuses on execution: building, selling, and finding people to pay for the product
- David’s advice to founders: build it yourself, find a co-founder, go to an accelerator program
- Startups outside of Silicon Valley were struggling to figure out how to raise funding and make the next
- Southern California has great support for life sciences, social space, e-commerce direct-to-consumer brands, and entertainment
[29:32 - 40:04] VC Sentiment in Tech Investing
- Valuations for tech startups have been drastically rising in the past few years
- Private markets lag 6-9 months behind public markets in terms of valuation resetting
- Good startups are still raising money from existing portfolios, but at lower valuations than a year ago.
[40:05 - 41:35] Closing Segment
“You can be anywhere and apply to anybody. If you’re good, you’ll get funded.” - David Mandel
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