Earlier this week, my partner Nabeel and I recorded our first podcast. We talked a bit about crowd funding and the Job Act. You can listen to it here.
In a nutshell, I’m excited about the possibilities of crowd funding. There are too many examples of great indicators such as Angelist and Kickstarter. I also agree with my friend Albert who wrote this great post a few years back, “No Such Thing As Too Much Seed Capital.
That is why I was disappointed to see David Rose’s negative take on crowd funding on Quora. This part struck me the wrong way:
What will be interesting to see, and what no one yet knows, is whether crowdfunding will be effectively ‘ghettoized’ to the low end of the market. For many different reasons, most securities lawyers I’ve spoken with feel that once a company goes down the crowdfunding path, they will effectively be cutting themselves off from any future funding by deeper-pocketed Accredited Investors, or institutional funders such as venture capital funds. So there seems to be a very good chance that this will end up in an either/or situation: take a one-time shot at raising up to $500,000 or so from the crowd, and then be prepared to live or die with only that cash, or else limit yourself to ‘traditional’ equity fundraising from Accredited investors, with all the flexibility for growth that currently provides.
I could not disagree more wtih this sentiment.
I don’t care who backs a company during the seed stage. I will use the same criteria I always use. Do I find the founders compelling? Do I love the idea? Is the product something I currently or will use? Do I want to see this thing in the world?
It wasn’t long ago when some folks wondered if YC companies were a negative indicator. The logic was why would a founder give up so much equity for so little cash? Clearly those critics have been silenced by the pure success of YC.
To me, asking (and caring) about who backed your startup during the seed stage is a bit like asking which college did you graduate from or what was your GPA in undergrad.
It won’t impact future financing.