Naval Ravikant Discusses How AngelList Is Rocking The Startup World
I recently spoke with Naval Ravikant, Co-Founder AngelList and Co-Maintainer Venture Hacks regarding the manner in which AngelList is changing the startup funding landscape. Naval describes why Silicon Valley will continue to be less of a dominant force in the startup universe over time and how tools like AngelList are facilitating the creation of entrepreneurial communities all over the world.
JG: Naval, what is the value proposition underlying AngelList?
Naval: Venture Hacks is educating entrepreneurs on the game theory of how to raise venture capital. AngelList is the productization of that. These days, thanks to code and community, we can productize almost any process done by humans. We are productizing the raising of capital for startups.
You can watch my interview with Naval below or on YouTube here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkuXQAvaKgY
JG: My venture firm, Rincon Venture Partners, recently invested in The Resumator, which we identified via AngelList. It is unlikely we otherwise would have become aware of The Resumator, as they are based in Pittsburgh. Are you finding that AngelList is an effective forum for startups located outside of traditional startup hotbeds or was our experience an anomaly?
Naval: It’s actually quite common. The core business we have built on is taking out-of-market startups and introducing them to investors. Late last year, there were more high-quality, seed-stage startups in New York than there was an Angel community to support them.
JG: Venture Hacks and AngelList are both great assets for the startup community. Other than giving back to the ecosystem, do you have plans to monetize your efforts beyond selling books?
Naval: The most important thing for an investor… is access to deals. When great companies really hit, all the investors want in and there isn’t enough room.
One of the things AngelList helps us do is raise our brand, have a pre-existing relationship with many, many entrepreneurs and give us access into great deals. We are not concerned in the short-term with making money. This is a ten year project…, we’re one and a half-years in and we have a long way to go.
Long-term, we may start investing in some of these companies as they go through. We are not taking the incubator approach…we would invest on the same terms along side the other investors and we would make sure to be a very, very small piece of the round and not to crowd out anybody.