Jul 27 • 48M

The art of pre-seed investing, mitigating investment risk at this stage, and building processes to build a true venture platform with a lean team

Episode 87

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Appears in this episode

Samir Kaji
Venture Unlocked is the playbook for starting, operating, & scaling a successful venture capital firm. Samir Kaji, Host of Venture Unlocked has +20-years of experience assisting & advising startups and venture firms. Listen for VC fund guidance.
Episode details

Follow me @samirkaji for my thoughts on the venture market, with a focus on the continued evolution of the VC landscape.

On this week’s show, we are excited to be joined by Gaurav Jain, Co-Founder of Afore Capital, one of the largest pre-seed funds in the US with nearly $300MM in AUM across 3 funds. Afore says that no investment is "too early,” and very often investing in companies that are pre-product.

We had a great conversation covering pre-seed investing, whether the current market should affect portfolio construction, and how they are able to execute on so many initiatives without the benefit of a large team.

About Gaurav Jain:
Before co-founding Afore in 2016 with Anamitra Banerji (formerly at Foundation Capital), Gaurav was a principal at one of the top-seed firms in the world in Founder Collective and prior to his investing career, he was an early Product Manager for Android Google and was a co-founder of Polar Mobile.

In this episode we discuss:

00:58 The inspiration for starting Afore
04:05 What is the difference between pre-seed and seed stage investments
06:32 How Afore underwrites risk at the earliest stages of development
10:19 The type of founders that Afore is most excited about
13:03 Why storytelling is so important at the early stages of companies
17:38 Why the market conditions haven’t changed Afore’s portfolio construction
23:18 How they think about follow-ons and insider bridges
26:58 How Afore has productized its offer with Afore Alpha
31:40 How the Afore platform and community works
36:48 What Gaurav’s day-to-day schedule looks like
42:50 The lessons Gaurav has learned from his anti-portfolio

I’d love to know what you took away from this conversation with Gaurav. Follow me @SamirKaji and give me your insights and questions with the hashtag #ventureunlocked. If you’d like to be considered as a guest or have someone you’d like to hear from (GP or LP), drop me a direct message on Twitter.

Podcast Production support provided by Agent Bee Agency