The sounds you didn’t hear earlier this month were our muted celebrations for the first birthday of TBD Angels. We launched just before the start of COVID-19 and 95% of our members and our portfolio founders have yet to meet each other face-to-face. However, despite the global pandemic, the progress of our investment group and the sheer volume of outstanding entrepreneurs we’ve been fortunate to invest in has made our first year exceed what we dreamed was possible when TBD was born during a lunch amongst six Boston friends.
The TBD Angels mission remains the same: assemble a best-in-class group of early-stage investors, passionate about supporting the world’s best and brightest entrepreneurs. As current and former operators across a wide range of sectors and functional areas, we aim to share our collective experience with our portfolio companies and we look to bring new strategies to the world of angel investing.
As we move into our 2nd year, we hold strong to several guiding principles:
- Encourage Engagement: The efforts of our members drive the success of the group. As a member-run organization, we collaborate across all activities: investment process, technology selection, membership growth, deal sourcing and thought leadership.
- Embrace Diversity: Ensuring a diverse membership and portfolio is not only the right thing to do, but also maximizes value creation. We strive to align with people across genders, ethnicities, sexual orientations and geographies as we are confident that a diverse membership base is highly important. Outsized returns in early-stage investing is not born out of homogeneity — collaborating with and investing in people with varying backgrounds is the key to success.
- Leverage Technology: While the recent state of the world has forced our group to overly rely on technology for communication, we are bullish on the idea that software will enable us to more efficiently and intelligently engage with each other and with startups throughout an investment lifecycle. Effective application of software and technology will help grow the early-stage investing pie.
- Great people = Great outcomes: Angel investors often evaluate startups from 3 viewpoints: Product, Market and Team. The latter is often the most important factor in determining likelihood of startup success and we are confident that the people of TBD Angels are what will differentiate this group and drive value amongst our membership. We will continue to focus on aligning with quality members and founders.
While we still have work to do in fine-tuning our process and introducing new engagement models with the startup community, our connected community of 160+ active members and 24 diverse, high-impact portfolio companies is off to a strong start. TBD Angels looks forward to our continued growth and support of the early-stage entrepreneurial space.