Nivi · September 10th, 2010
Gagan Biyani, founder of Udemy, tells the story of how he got 2x oversubscribed with a little help from Keith Rabois, Adeo Ressi, AngelList, and many others:
Udemy went out to raise money in February-March 2010. We received more than 30 no’s largely because investors weren’t confident enough in the business to pull the trigger.
Udemy focused hard on traction and launched the product in May 2010. By July, we had some promising numbers and decided to pitch again. We leveraged Adeo Ressi of the Founder Institute heavily before and during the fundraising.
I connected with a lot of friends and great CEO’s before fundraising to get intros. One of the most helpful was Darian Shirazi (CEO of Fwix), who intro’ed us to 3 of our investors. Afterwards, we made him advisor to thank him and because we wanted to keep an ongoing relationship with him.
Keith Rabois, one of the first people we re-met with, agreed to lead the round. In this meeting, we told Keith we wanted to raise $300K-$500K.
We leveraged AngelList to get additional momentum and investors for the round. It was critical to our success.
Within 2 weeks, we had more than $500K committed.
One more week later, we had more than $1M committed. We closed the round at $1M…
We can’t speak higher of AngelList and the value it provided to Udemy’s fundraising process. We received over 25 intro’s to top-tier investors. What other way can you get 25 investors to ask for intros to YOU! AngelList led to investments from Jeremy Stoppelman (CEO of Yelp), Dave McClure (500 Startups), Josh Stylman (Angel Investor, co-founder at Rotomedia and Reprise Media), and Ben Ling (executive roles at Google, Facebook, YouTube). But what was even more important was that AngelList got our round over-subscribed, so we had momentum which helped convince our other investors to make their decisions faster and in our favor.
This is what I like about great startup cities like Silicon Valley: a loosely organized team of investors and entrepreneurs giving their time and money to help get a company off the ground. Read the full post.