Angel Spotlight Series: Behind the Scenes with Boris Wertz

August 15, 2012

3:00 pm

As an entrepreneur pitching to angel investors, you have a lot on your mind. You have to nail your pitch and anticipate their questions, all while staying cool and charismatic. Preparing your pitch is of paramount importance, and a crucial component of this is knowing exactly who you’re pitching to.

We’re here to help.  

Tech Cocktail’s Angel Spotlight Series is a weekly feature of prominent angel investors around the country. We give you the lowdown on their investing strategy, top advice, and deal breakers, and hopefully reveal that, just like you and me, angels are people, too (with deeper pockets).

This week we chat with Boriz Wertz, a prominent early-stage investor based in Vancouver, Canada. In July, he launched a $15 million fund called Version One Ventures that will make quarter- to half-million-dollar investments in North American startups. A former entrepreneur and COO of AbeBooks (sold to Amazon in 2008), Wertz cofounded the GrowLab accelerator in Vancouver and has invested as an angel in companies like Summify and Indiegogo.

Investing philosophy

Boris Wertz: Invest in smart, ambitious entrepreneurs that have a strong vision of how to disrupt a large market.

Top advice to entrepreneurs

Wertz: Work on something that you are really passionate about.

Common advice that you disagree with

Wertz: Don’t think about monetization too quickly – it is much more important to build a product that users love, the monetization will follow.

Top mistake entrepreneurs make when pitching to you

Wertz: Talking about the exit options for the company – I want them to think about a big vision, not a quick exit!

Most cherished accomplishment

Wertz: It is still day 1 for the Internet and me as an investor – will talk about this in a decade. 🙂

In my free time you can be found…

Wertz: Playing with my kids on one of the Vancouver beaches.

The Angel Spotlight Series is a weekly Q&A with angel investors. Are you or do you know an angel investor we should feature? Send an email to [email protected] and [email protected].

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Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact [email protected]

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