Ali Jamal (Founding Partner @ First Check Ventures)

  • Startups in emerging markets are being ignored by VCs.
  • Syndicates can offer 10x more powerful networks than traditional funds.
  • Most of syndicates rely on outside signals; you can get more interest without relying on these signals.
  • If you’re selling something, you should aim to follow up until people tell you ‘no’.
  • Having a product background can give you valuable insights and vantage points to help companies.
  • There is a tradeoff between delegating and being involved. If you are interacting with founders, you are the right person to write the memo.
  • It is easy to setup a syndicate / rolling fund. It is hard to see what kind of support you are going to get.
  • There is so much value in co-syndicating and finding other investors to work with.
  • Your goal shouldn’t be to become a lifelong VC. Your goal should be to help the overall startup ecosystem.