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Instagram’s First Investor Explains What He Looks For In Companies


Nice piece with Steve Anderson of Baseline Ventures.

After making a tidy sum with the sale of Instagram (his share of a cool $1bn from Facebook), he lifts the lid on what he looks for when investing early in companies. His hit rate is pretty darn good – as well as Instagram he made seed investments in Twitter, Path, OMGPOP and Heroku.

He wants founders who are thoughtful, but then make forceful decisions. This is important because few people get their idea exactly right on the first try. “As Instagram has proven with Brbn to Instagram, I find it really hard to believe that any one person will have the perfect maniacal vision right from the start …. So that’s part of my assessment, hey, does this person have an opinion, based on a worldview that they’ve developed through listening, paying attention, and pondering. 


Great to hear some validation from a successful investor that great products are rarely created according to their original plan. Don’t be afraid to pivot!

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