Vera Shokina

What do Investors Want?

This article is written by Nardine B. M’barek, a Contributor Author at Startup Istanbul.

Mrs. Vera Shokina, the Managing Director with Silicon Valley Bank’s Global Gateway group. Prior to joining Silicon Valley Bank, Mrs. Shokina was a Partner, CFO and COO of Runa Capital. When she joined Silicon Valley Bank, she remained 5 years as a banker, then became interested in the technology ecosystem, and decided to do that. Mrs. Shokina talked to us about what you need to do if you want to become an Angel investor, and what do investors actually want.

 Being part of the Silicon Valley Bank, Mrs. Vera Shokina developed as a Managing Director for the bank’s Global Gateway group. She was present during Startup Istanbul 2017, and delivered a speech, or better call it a workshop related to how to become a proper, and successful Angel Investor. Now, the question is, what do investors really want, and need to do to get it?

As an Angel investor, the first thing you do not want to do is to risk your profile. By that, we mean the fact that you do not want to get into business, and put your money somewhere it does not need to be. You need to know what is your risk profile and returns expectations and what options do you have. You also need to make sure before investing in a company or an entrepreneur how much the business will grow, whether it is 20%, or even more before getting your investment on the project. You really need to understand your risk profile before you invest your money, or else, it will be a loss of money, not a winning case.

Make sure the people you invest in have the right experience and the right character, and who are going to make sure to execute all their plans, and promises. There are businesses that are not truly revolutionary, but just a little enhanced when it comes to technology, so these businesses, you need to study them before getting into the boat of the investment line, and put in your money.

If you are a beginner investor who wants to invest in technology companies, and you are thinking about how to do this, then one of the possibilities you have is co-investing with other people. In this case it is a really good option for you, since you do not need to think about legal obligations, or spend time on money structuring, all you can focus on is figuring out the companies and entrepreneurs you want to invest in. Also, if it more than one investor focusing on just one company, then it would be better for that company too, since it would open new doors for them, and the chances on executing the plan will be much higher.

Silicon Valley Bank usually accept to invest in companies and entrepreneurs who have syndicated investors, these companies and profiles are much more successful, they tend to run better and more professionally. The key factor in that, is that the company has much more meaningful conversations together; they discuss ideas, issues, and solutions, thus, reach their goals quicker, and have a higher performance. That is why joining the syndicate would be a good option for you as well, instead of thinking alone about which business or company to invest in, you could talk to other people of the same field who can give you pieces of advice.

Investing your money could be a winning card for you, you just need to be a little bit careful at the beginning, and then you are ready to go!

─ December 2, 2019