Guess Who Gives Out Bigger Valuations -- East Coast VCs Or West Coast VCs

alexis tryon artsicle

I’m hosting a panel on everything you need to know about fundraising at our Startup Conference on May 3 — tickets available here.

As part of the prep work I was on the phone with Alexis Tryon CEO and cofounder of Artsicle, a monthly art rental business. She’s a first time entrepreneur, and raised a seed round in November of last year.

One of the things she learned in the process of raising money is that there really is a difference between an East Coast VC and a West Coast VC. And the funny thing is that each of them fits the stereotype.

On the West Coast, she said the VCs were more interested in hearing about her vision — “What’s your dream, how will you change the world?” On the East Coast, the VCs are much more interested in numbers, and want stats.

She also said the valuations on the West Coast were way higher than on the East Coast. When I asked why, she speculated that the West Coast is just a little bit more comfortable with the idea of risk than the East Coast.

Artiscle decided to take a mix of investors from both sides of the country and Tryon opted not to take a highest possible valuation. She said she wasn’t comfortable with raising at the highest valuation because she wanted to be able to raise her next round at a reasonable valuation.

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