The curious case of VC Associates

One of the ‘large fund’ associate wrote to me saying:

Hey Kris - …., I heard you are doing something big in broadcasting. My firm and personally I am a big fan of the market and excited about the opportunities in this…

Being a cocky-arrogant-sonofabitch, I replied w/ a single line: “Help me understand - what are the areas in broadcasting are you and your firm excited about?

[I haven’t got any reply on that mail  yet, and I’m waiting since last week. ]

Past 12 years, I have met tons of VC Associates ‘trying their best’ to create ‘priority deal-flow’ to their firms and most of them failing miserably at it. 

The problem: 

  • One (most of the time) none of the (indian) young-analysts and associates are entrepreneurs
  • Two (all the time) they have zero understanding of the market
  • Three, (blame it on the salary or logo of the firm) most of the associates think that they are doing a mercy to the Founders by allocating time
  • Four, they always ask crap like ACV, LCV etc crap and talk like ‘blue ocean’ 

In the Venture Capital ‘asset class’, the junior roles like Analysts and Associates are integral to the Funds image AND that’s where the firms make the biggest mistake. 

If you are aspiring to be an analyst/associate at a VC firm, please follow the following rules

1. I know it’s late, but learn about a human emotion called 'empathy'

2. Venture Capital exists because of Entrepreneurship, NOT the other way around

3. Learn to respect the time to build a company/code-bank - it’s not like your McKinsey job

4. Before writing cold-emails saying “excited about the opportunity, blue-ocean, disrupting the disruption”, look at the mirror and your college degrees

5. If you are writing to a product company, atleast FUCKING USE THE PRODUCT before copy+pasting the email.

On #5, Sampad of Instamojo wrote his observation: 


I hardly see an investor saying that: 

Hey, I used your product and it’s awesome / awful / sucked etc and I think you can do this or that from his/her experience which can help the founder achieve little bit more on reach, retention or revenue metric of the company.

So - you are young, you have some three decades left in this Industry before you get a Billion dollar bank balance and retire for life - Look at #1. Empathy: DON’T PISS OFF entrepreneurs with your idiotic questions. They may fail now, but when the next time they raise, they’ll avoid you and there goes your ‘priority deal flow’ shit under the flush. 

So - Be humble, because that’s what you are designed to be. 

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