What I’ve Learned About Deal Sourcing


Editor’s Note: Danielle Morrill is CEO of Mattermark, a company that provides research tools for startup investors. 

I’ve spent the past two years selling to, building for, and raising from VCs. In this time, I have met with thousands of people who play various roles in the deal sourcing and dealmaking process, and I’ve learned a fair amount about the thinking behind sourcing deals. These are some of my observations.

The Art vs. the Science

Due to firm economics and succession, there is generally an “old guard” defending the art and a crop of associates and analysts fighting to bring the science to venture capital.

Most investors initially tell me they have so much inbound they can’t possibly need a tool that will help them source investment opportunities. Given the broad distribution of outcomes in VC, with many funds underperforming market benchmarks in 2014 according to Cambridge Associates

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