Raising on a Vision
Or how to raise $2m dollars before the age of 22.
At Exeq, we’ve been in business for two years now, chasing the vision of a more efficient and fruitful financial future for our generation. Throughout the process, our product, team, and goals have changed significantly, but what’s remained constant is that our business, like every other business, requires capital to survive. Specifically, for our industry, a lot of capital.
We knew from the beginning that we would have to start raising money for Exeq, (called Mula at the time) so my partner Dan and I made that a major priority from day one.
We got ourselves a 3 person office in a WeWork, with the initial capital we were able to raise from friends and family, and started booking meetings left and right.
We spoke about our vision a lot — waxing poetic about a future where banks looked more like country clubs, and our banking apps were as amazing as the Facebooks and Googles of the world. We discussed our vision all the time, on our friends’ roofs, at home at the dinner table, and at the WeWork on Broad St. We spoke to whoever would listen to two 19 year-olds with a radical f*$#ing idea.
This talk started the inertia.
Now, fundraising is a hard thing to do. You’re asking someone to give up their hard earned cash for an idea that doesn’t exist in its full capacity. You’re asking someone for a whole lot of trust, and in its most basic sense, you’re asking someone to have faith in you and your ability to execute. Trust is only harder to gain when you are two 19 year-old college dropouts.
So, how did we do it?
- We Created. We created a lot of business assets that helped both potential investors and ourselves better understand the business we were building. We wrote and rewrote pitch-decks, business plans, P&L projections — anything that a traditional business would have, we created. People may ask how did you know how to do it? Well that brings us to point 2.
- Just do it. As a person who’s new to business, it’s the easiest thing to say “well … I don’t know how to do that.” It’s a trope as classic as they come. So what I say is get on Google and start researching and learning. Just keep making decks and business plans and editing them as you learn. This shows investors that you’re serious and at least have a base understanding of the business you are trying to get them to invest in. It also shows that you’re a go-getter which is the most important thing.
- Chutzpah is Good. Looking back, I find myself in awe of the rooms i’ve been in to pitch Exeq. This all comes as a result of a little thing called chutzpah. Not the bad kind, but the good kind. We love our idea and our company and we have the audacity to think that other people will too, so we reach out endlessly and with a lot of chutzpah.
4. A Game of Attrition. A well-known “Eli-ism” in the office is “Keep PUSHING.” I say it when things are awesome, I say it when things aren’t, it’s a mantra of mine. Fundraising is a game of attrition, it’s a game of pressure and push. The more emails you send the more of a chance that a deal will close.
This all brings us back to Inertia. If you have an amazing idea, the most important thing is to start the inertia. Start creating, start doing, have a lot of audacity, and keep pushing.
Once that inertia starts, it becomes very hard to stop.
Check us out at Exeq.com, join the over 22,000 people on our waitlist and be the first to hear about events on our rooftop in Soho and our NYC-only launch this summer! 🏙️ 🚀