Angel: Cyan Banister


Cyan Banister, former angel investor (Uber, Thumbtack) now Founders Fund Partner, shares with Jason her successes & brutal losses, her formula for choosing successful startups & founders, and her journey from angel investor to VC.

0:00 Angel is brought to you by
0:29 What is Angel Podcast about?
1:26 Introduction to Cyan Banister!
2:24 What attracted you to Angel Investing?
3:52 How Cyan deals with her founders.
4:47 Cyan explains her transition from Angel Investor to Venture Capitalist.
5:41 How deals work at a Venture Capital firm.
6:52 How did you find deal-flow as an Angel Investor?
8:34 How do you deal with the overload of emails as an Investor?
9:17 What are some RED flags with deals?
9:56 Cyan explains Y-Combinator’s manufactured pressure to Investors.
11:35 Why Cyan stopped leading investment rounds.
13:14 Simple but overlooked process in due diligence.
14:04 Why you should look at the cap table during due diligence.
16:03 What makes you excited about a founder v. concerned.
17:53 How do you deal with founders without passion?
20:23 What factors do you look for in an idea?
21:49 Jason couldn’t wrap his head around Snapchat.
23:19 Cyan missed out on a $50B company.
24:18 Why the secondary market is important.
25:34 Thank you Audible for sponsoring the Angel Podcast. Go to
28:38 What Jason is listening to on
30:54 Cyan talks about a portfolio company that made her sad.
32:59 Should founders listen to investors?
35.00 Why it’s important to listen to the warning signs.
36:24 Cyan’s talks about her most brutal investment.
41:25 Cyan talks about her “solid” wins.
42:02 Cyan: ”Apple is so good at being secretive”
43:46 Cyan’s first interaction with Uber.
49:18 Cyan’s first interaction with Thumbtack.
51:29 Proud to be an investor in Uber.
52:35 Why isn’t there enough good news in the world?
53:57 What it’s like to meet 25 entrepreneurs a week.
55:14 Jason does his Forrest Gump “Shrimp” imitation.
55:26 Cyan & Jason explain their recent investment into a BioTech startup.
58:44 Will flying cars ever happen?
59:13 Thank you Cyan Banister for sharing everything you’ve learned.

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