Fundraising Insights: Dave Icke, MC10

Dave Icke, Former CEO of MC10 shares his insight on fundraising and strategic partnerships for early-stage startups. Icke emphasizes the importance of patience while fundraising and advises startups to find investors who resonate with their mission.

Full Transcript

Electronics are traditionally rigid and boxy and so they don’t fit well with people as we move.
What we’re trying to do is make them soft and conformal so that they’re easily wearable for sports and fitness and digital health applications and ultimately even going inside the body to measure and deliver therapy.

I’m Dave Icke, I’m the CEO of MC10.

Early-stage CEOs spend probably more time than they would ideally like out raising money. We’re really fortunate to put together a strong syndicate of venture investors over our first couple of rounds of VC and most recently we raised an eighteen million dollar round that was important because we brought in strategic corporate investors for the first time
and today we have strategic investors that lineup with each of our three major verticals as well as a global player that helps take our technology into new markets, particularly in Asia.

You have to be patient when you’re fundraising. It always takes longer than you think and there are elements of fundraising where people say no, that are not related to you or the company. I think getting past that and realizing that there are a combination of factors that all have to come together for an investment to make sense. A partner needs to have appropriate pull in the firm, they need to have enough funds left to invest, they need to resonate on your direction and vision for the company and where it’s going and then you need to get through all the typical challenges of market size and business model and team and the direction that the company’s going. Really, all those planets have to line up in order for an investment to happen.

My advice to entrepreneurs would be stick with your story. Try to come up with a crisp, simple story that you believe in and keep talking to people until you find somebody that resonates with that. There’s no need to take money from someone that you’re not going to be comfortable with for the long term because it might allow you to live another six or twelve months. It’s really not going to take you where you want to go, so stick to your guns.