There are so many reasons why investors choose not to invest in a particular early-stage startup. Here are a few:
- I’m having a major Airbnb moment today. I’ll write about it in a few years. I’ll come and beg you to let me into the next round.
- Most investors make 1–2 investments for every 500–1,000 startups they meet. Exceptions include angels and large scale seed funds. So a common reason that someone might pass is just his or her lack of capacity and time. It has little to do with your company.
- You have too little experience; you have too much experience. You are not technical enough; you are too technical and not commercial enough. It’s not a total random walk down University Ave, but there’s plenty of subjectivity that you can’t control for.
The most common answer you, as the founder, will hear from investors is “no”.
The point is when an investor says “no”, don’t be discouraged. Focus on the answer from your customers and users. If they are saying “yes, yes, yes”, the VCs will eventually do so too.