“We invest in rebellious outliers.” “We invest in the Future of Work.” “We invest in frontier technologies.” “We invest in diverse founders.” “We invest with social good in mind.”
I hear, read, see examples every day of investors espousing differentiated theses with regards to why they exist. Why a founder should take their dollars. And why a LP should give them theirs. Sometimes there’s substance behind these statements; others are rickety content marketing or breathless trend hopping. Fortunately there’s a source of eventual truth! Your portfolio page. Your portfolio page is your thesis. It’s where you’ve committed dollars, not just Medium posts. It’s who has actually taken your checks, not the deals you wish you were in.
One challenge for seed investors especially is that your portfolio page is a lagging indicator of your interests. Startups often don’t announce their initial funding for quarters or years, which leads to the “oh I didn’t know you guys invested in that area” challenge for early funds like ours.