A special panel discussion for startup founders and investors.
Early Stage Startup Financing in 2023
There is plenty of seed financing activity going on in the startup world, but it’s a different economic environment with a variety of different structures being used. In this episode a panel of experts discusses early stage startup financings in the new economy. You can listen as a podcast or watch as a video below:
Igor is a founder and General Partner of Cortical Ventures an early stage AI-focused venture fund. Cortical Ventures was started to invent, incubate and invest in the companies leading the AI revolution. Previous, Igor was an early investor and SVP of Corporate Development at DataRobot where he was responsible for defining DataRobot’s growth strategy, fundraising, managing the sourcing and execution of mergers and acquisitions, and strategic partnerships. He raised >$500M in growth capital and executed multiple M&A transactions and partnerships.
Natasha Allen is a corporate attorney at Foley & Lardner LLP, supporting companies in all stages of growth in complex decision making across a broad range of corporate matters. She is a partner with the firm, serving as Co-Chair for Artificial Intelligence within the Innovative Technology sector, Co-Chair of the Venture Capital Committee, and is a member of the Venture Capital, M&A, and Transactions Practices. She also serves as Pro Bono chair for the firm’s Silicon Valley office.
Louis Lehot is a partner and business lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP, based in the firm’s Silicon Valley offices, where he is a member of the Private Equity & Venture Capital, M&A and Transactions Practices as well as the Technology, Health Care, Life Sciences and Energy Industry Teams. Louis focuses his practice on advising entrepreneurs and their management teams, investors and financial advisors at all stages of growth, from garage to global. Louis especially enjoys being able to help his clients achieve hyper-growth, go public and to successfully obtain optimal liquidity events. Learn more.
Benjamin is General Partner at SkyRiver Ventures, a leading venture capital firm focused on investing in early stage cutting edge technologies between North America and Asia. We seek to work with talented people in their early stages of technology development who have a vision to positively impact the world. We play an active role in supporting companies throughout their development from regionally focused startups to global tech companies.
After launching Plug and Play’s $25.5 million supply chain fund Taylor joined Tenacity and successfully raised a $60 million seed fund, becoming one of the first VCs to close two separate first-time funds in less than a year. Tenacity Venture Capital focuses on finding and backing formative pre-seed and seed-stage entrepreneurs and matching them with top investors for follow-on rounds as they scale their business. Tenacity invests in companies across sectors including AI, fintech, hardware, logistics, marketplaces, mobile gaming, robotics, and SaaS. The firm was founded in 2021 and is based in Palo Alto, California.
Bret Waters, Moderator
Bret Waters has been in Silicon Valley his entire life as an entrepreneur, executive, and investor. Today he teaches entrepreneurship at Stanford, runs the 4thly Startup Accelerator, and coaches startup CEO’s at Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship. He’s successfully raised capital multiple times in his career, and the entrepreneurs he has worked with have raised hundreds of millions of dollars in capital. He received his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.