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written by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

‘We do not invest in companies with a broken cap table’

This is a quote from a VC fund’s website and a phrase I often hear from investors.

Another one that impressed me lately was: ‘Cap table is our Bible’.

I hope this is strong enough for you to understand how important the cap table is for investors and how much it affects the fundraising process outcome.

It hurts when you are losing a chance of partnering with a great investor only because you didn’t think ahead at the beginning…

written by Alexey Knysh, Senior Partner, Head of Financial Advisory

CFO is the brains behind the company and is responsible for digitizing the business. He must be aware of financial data and key metrics, such as CAC, % of the market share, customer retention, churn rate, client satisfaction rate, etc. The CFO is usually immersed in all operational processes: sales, marketing, product development, engineering.

The CFO supports many of the company’s strategic and tactical decisions. He helps determine:

  • whether the product will be profitable;
  • is it worth developing a new project;
  • how quickly this or that investment will pay off…

written by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

B2B sales for startups can be quite a challenging process. Large companies do not always understand how to work with startups and prefer the established partners. It is also hard for startups to find ways to approach corporations.

But things change, and many big companies are opening innovation departments and hiring people who are more familiar with the startup world. Therefore, as a startup founder, you might have an inside ally and try your chances to get a deal.

Anyway, what are the ways for a startup to succeed in…

written by Alexey Knysh, Finance PM Senior Partner, Head of Financial Advisory

What is financial due diligence?

Financial due diligence is the procedure undertaken by the potential investors to understand:

  • Historical financial performance of the investee
  • Key assumptions in the management’s forecast
  • Core team and systems in use
  • Controls, accounting policies in place

The financial due diligence aims to provide reasonable assurance to the potential investors that the given historical financial information is materially correct; the assumptions in the forecasted period are reasonable and supported by relevant evidence.

Financial due diligence is a stand-alone process. Although the analytical team can…

written by Managing Partner, Snezhana S.

I dedicate this article to all romantic startup founders who believe that early-stage investors don’t look at numbers but only analyze the idea, team, and product. However, the way entrepreneurs approach the numbers greatly influences both the fundraising process and the result, reflected in the final offer from the investor.

Let’s start with the document you’ve heard of, Pitch Deck.

Pitch Deck

Call it your startup’s passport. I bet you’ve already done something and thought it was a pitch deck. Why just “thought”? …

by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

A pitch deck showcases all essential information about your startup: product/service, business model, growth traction, introduces your team, etc. The financial part of the deck is very important

Having analyzed and created hundreds of pitch decks, we noticed common gaps in the pitches, especially when it comes to financial information. So here is the list:

  • Lack of financial forecast: the financial model should be at least for 2–3 years.
  • Lack of unit economics: understanding of key metrics.
  • Lack of investment offer or just an amount required without the use of funds…

written by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

Every investor is different, but all of them have something in common. They want to know everything about your startup before they decide to invest. And for them, one of the essential criteria is that they can get all the information they need from you. Relatively fast. Then you become their guru and expert, a professional they can trust and rely on. And that is crucial grounds for any successful business partnership.

What is a fundraising data room?

Fundraising is a 24/7 job; hence the more prepared you are beforehand…

written by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

During my workshops, I always say that when developing a financial model, use available templates: there is no need to reinvent a bicycle. Just find a template that you like the most and improve it.

But my recent interactions with several teams proved that having a financial model template doesn’t guarantee you’ll be able to develop a working model.

Let me share my insights with you, and hopefully, they will help you get it right.

Usually, there is an instruction attached to the template, don’t skip reading it. …

by Anna Magiera, Senior Partner, Startups & Venture Business

As a startup founder, you will be lucky enough to encounter people, who would give you feedback, during your journey. These are your customers, investors, mentors, and advisors. They will provide feedback on your product or service, business model, strategy, etc.

For some reason, entrepreneurs either forget about this valuable source of information or perceive it as criticism and behave accordingly: deny, oppose, belittle. From my experience, startup founders that are open to feedback are more successful.


Can you believe it? Among the top 20 reasons for startup failure, number…

Finance PM

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