I'm the founder of a new startup and currently bootstrapping the operation. By the way of luck, we have potential interest from an angel investor, but should things not work out, I'm wondering when is a good time to look for funding? Most of the incubators that I've seen are looking for startups with full teams already. I'm set to attend a few startup events hosted in our city, but not really sure of etiquette and what to ask for, but see great value in just meeting established people in the industry nonetheless. We're outsourcing our MVP and I've just hired a few associates working piecemeal for me when required. The prototype will be done by me. At this stage in time, I have a full time job and this is a part time operation. Thank you so much for your time. I would value consulting with some of you over phone.

Mahesh & Mike have both given good answers here. I'm writing only to underline and expand the potential issues they've raised that you will likely encounter.

By way of background, I am a non-technical solo founder that raised a great angel round based on a solid MVP. I'm also an active angel investor myself so can talk from both perspectives.

The point about being part-time is a real issue. What it says to investors is you might be lacking a real commitment to your own cause. So let me make it clear: IMO, you're not ready to really raise from great investors until you yourself are all-in.

The difference of a couple of months of you living and breathing this will undoubtedly improve your odds of raising successfully and also give you time to complete your MVP.

You *can* raise money with a great MVP and no full-time team but you will often run into the "team" objection. You can get a lot done with contractors (I relied on them a lot in my early builds) but the inability to attract a co-founder or CTO or other senior tech resource raises the potential flag. From an outsider's perspective, the concerns range from "does this person have hidden personality issues" to "is (s)he not convincing enough or lacking credibility with tech people?" to "they don't have enough hustle to get a team, so how can they hustle to win their market" and so on.

A single angel investor does not fill an angel round. If this person believes in you and what you're building, that's great. It might even make sense (depending on the terms) to take their money now *but* I *guarantee* that the best thing for you to say to this person is "hey, I'm going to quit my job and really fully explore this for the 30-60 days and really make sure we're on the right path. Would you mind if I come back to you then to discuss your interest?" If I were in your shoes, that's what I'd do.

Leaving a full-time job and plunging full-time is scary and not an easy decision and not for everyone. Happy to talk with you about how to evaluate this with a bit more clarity.

Answered 8 years ago

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