Mitch Kitamura / October, 2018
How do I find investors in Silicon Valley?
Mitch Kitamura launched JAIC’s US investment arm in 2000 and brings a comprehensive background in business expansion between Asia and the US, having invested across 30 startups. At Draper Nexus, he specializes in Consumer/ Enterprise Internet Services and Mobile in US and Japan.
Watch this video with Mitch Kitamura as he explains, if you don’t know anyone in Silicon Valley, how you can start meeting and connecting with people and start making your imprint in Silicon Valley.
As a foreign founder, how do I find investors in Silicon Valley?
It is very difficult for foreign entrepreneurs. I think the easiest thing is getting into UC Berkeley or Stanford because then they can build that network with people. Even if it’s just for a 3-month course or 6-month course, you’ll go to school and start meeting people and start saying that you’re studying at Stanford. This will open up doors easier than saying that you just came over from Japan. It’s about building a local network in school or through other communities are important.
Other places are events. But I think events tend to be a too noisy place to build a really good relationship there. I think it is important for foreign entrepreneurs to pitch into as many events as possible. Nobody knows you so it’s important to show up at events and angel investors will remember ‘oh, I’ve seen him/her at that event’ or ‘he/she is still working hard at this event’. A couple of months later you’ll see that pattern. That’s giving the imprint to the investors and the community and that is very important.
I know it’s a long process, but it is very important to show up too many events as well.