Angel Investing: Sequoia Scout Ellen DaSilva on Deal Sourcing Via Twitter and Leveraging Your Value Add Beyond Capital as an Investor
Play • 26 min

Justin Gordon (@justingordon212) talks with Ellen DaSilva (@ellenjdasilva), who is an active angel investor and scout with Sequoia Capital, focusing on Seed and Series A consumer tech companies. Until recently, she was the Head of Business Development at Hims & Hers. A graduate of Harvard Business School, Ellen has spent time working at Barclays Capital and Twitter. Ellen was also a Partner at Rough Draft Ventures where she invested in student teams from the Boston area. She also co-authored the book “Pitching & Closing: Everything You Need To Know About Business Development, Partnerships, and Making Deals that Matter.”

Twitter: @ellenjdasilva

Show Notes:

  • How Ellen began angel investing in 2015 
  • How she was deal sourcing during business school
  • What Ellen was looking for in her early investments and how that has changed over time
  • Deal sourcing via Twitter
  • Deciding to invest in Fast within 10 minutes of meeting founder Allison Allen
  • How Twitter democratizes access for both founders and investors
  • Investing in Clubhouse early
  • Cold outreach as an investor
  • Getting validation as an investor
  • How Ellen manages her angel investing portfolio alongside having a fulltime job and being an operator herself
  • How Ellen provides value beyond money to the companies she invests in
  • Leveraging your value add as an investor in your pitch to founders
  • How the value unlock investors provide can be much more important than the financial element
  • What Ellen learned writing the book Pitching and Closing: Everything You Need to Know About Business Development, Partnerships, and Making Deals that Matter with Alex Taub
  • Transitioning from being an angel investor to being a scout with Sequoia Capital
  • Ellen’s experience with the Rough Draft program 

More about the show:

The Vitalize Podcast, a show by Vitalize Venture Capital (a seed-stage venture capital firm and pre-seed 300+ member angel community open to everyone), dives deep into the world of startup investing and the future of work.

Hosted by Justin Gordon, the Director of Marketing at Vitalize Venture Capital, The Vitalize Podcast includes two main series. 

The Angel Investing series features interviews with a variety of angel investors and VCs around the world. The goal? To help develop the next generation of amazing investors. 

The Future of Work series takes a look at the founders and investors shaping the new world of work, including insights from our team here at Vitalize Venture Capital. 

More about us:

Vitalize Venture Capital was formed in 2017 as a $16M seed-stage venture fund and now includes both a fund as well as an angel investing community investing in the future of work. Vitalize has offices in Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

The Vitalize Team:
Gale -
Caroline -
Justin -

Vitalize Angels, our angel investing community open to everyone:

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