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500 Startups
to 500 VCs
Dave McClure
January 2016
Honolulu, HI
Dave McClure

Founding Partner & Troublemaker, 500 Startups
00’s & 10’s:
• VC: Founders Fund, Facebook fbFund, 500 Startup...
500 Startups

Global Seed VC Fund & Startup Accelerator
• What is 500?
• $200M under management
• 100+ people / 20 Countri...
This Talk is About…
• Re-inventing a 50 year old sport
• 500 Startups… WTF?
• 99 VC Problems, But a Batch Ain’t 1
• MoneyB...
Re-inventing a
50 year old sport:
Venture Capital 2.0
Football
West Coast
Offense
Baseball
MoneyBall
Basketball
3 point
revolution
Venture
Capital
500 Startups
“Lots of little ...
Before & After 2 Dot-Com Crashes

LEAN Startup: Simpler, Faster, Cheaper, Smarter
Before 2000
Big, Fat, Dinosaur Startup
•...
Platforms 2.0

Search, Social, Mobile,
Video, Messaging
Changes in Tech Startups
• LESS Capital required to build product, get to market
– Dramatically reduced cost for servers, ...
500 Startups…
WTF?
500 Startups Mission
1. Find Smart People.
2. Give Them Money.
3. Wait for Good Shit to Happen.
Building Startup Ecosystems
500 Startups Mission
• Provide capital, community, education
to smart people (founders, investors)
• Build functional star...
500 Startups History:
What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been
Year People Locations AUM $ Companies
2010 5 MV 10 75
2011 10 BRZ 30 250
2012 15 MX, IND 50 450
2013 30 CHN, SEA 75 650
20...
500 Startups: a Platform made of People
#500STRONG #500LOVE #HFGSD
100 People, 20 Countries, 25 Languages
500 Startups: “Full-Stack” VC
http://bit.ly/99VCProblems
Portfolio Diversification
“Spray, not Pray”
Q: Chances of spotting
unicorn?/
a) 1%
b) 2%
c) 5%
d) 10%
e) ZERO
Chances of spotting
unicorn = ~1%/
If portfolio size = 15
companies/
/
If portfolio size = 30
companies
/
If portfolio size = 100
companies
500 Strategy:
MoneyBall for Startups
“Lots of Little Bets”
500 Strategy: Lots of Little Bets*
1) make lots (>100) of
investments in early-
stage startups
3) wait 3-10 years for retu...
Building Tech Startups
Make lots of little bets:
• Start with many small “experiments”
• Filter out failures + small wins
...
Startup Risk Reduction
Concept
Early
Customer
Usage
Scalable
Customer
Acquisition
[about to be]
Profitable
Unit
Economics
...
Investment Stage #1: 

Product Validation + Customer Usage
• Structure
– 1-3 founders
– $25-$100K investment
– Incubator e...
Investment Stage #2: 

Market Validation + Revenue Testing
• Structure
– 2-10 person team
– $100K-$1M investment
– Syndica...
Investment Stage #3: 

Revenue Validation + Growth
• Structure
– 5-25 person team
– $1M-$10M investment
– Seed & Venture I...
Legal review Partner approval
Angel Pre-Seed Seed Post-Seed Series A/B Growth
Accelerator
Seed
“Distro"
Follow-On
Selectio...
500 VCs,
500 Funds
We live in a World of ABUNDANCE
• There are LOTS of talented people in the world
• There are LOTS of entrepreneurs everywh...
Who, What is an
Entrepreneur?
Who/What is an Entrepreneur?
• someone who WANTS to start a business
• someone who can RUN a business
• someone who can ru...
How Big Is The Market?
Q: How Many Entrepreneurs?
• How Many People = 7,000,000,000 on earth
• 1% of Humanity is Entrepren...
How Many VCs?
• How Many Founders? 1,000,000 founders / year
• (ok, divide by 100, let’s say 10,000 founders / year)
• 1 V...
How to Become a VC
• Option 1: Go to Harvard/Stanford/Wharton, Get MBA,
Become VC Associate, Work at McKinsey / Google /
F...
500 Startups + Stanford University Investor Education Program
#Venture Capital Unlocked: Learn best practices of Silicon V...
How to build investment
thesis
Meet REAL startup founders
and conduct selection
Connection with Silicon Valley
investors a...
Feb 8th-19th 2016
@ Stanford+500
signup NOW: 

http://500.vc
500 Startups + Stanford University Investor Education Program...
Questions? Comments? Heckles?
• More?
– http://500.co (our company)
– http://500hats.com (my blog)
– https://angel.co/500s...
We live in a World
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We live in a World From 500 Startups to 500 VCs

We live in a World of ABUNDANCE
• There are LOTS of talented people in the world
• There are LOTS of entrepreneurs everywhere
• There is a LOT of capital sitting around, BUT….
• Not much is available for un-tested entrepreneurs :(
• 500 Startups plans to change that.

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