Angel: Zach Coelius


Zach Coelius, founder-turned-angel & Syndicate leader with a $1b exit after only 2yrs investing, shares insights on advising, hustling, deal flow, & the thrill of first market validation.

0:01 Angel is brought to you by Audible. Go to to receive a free audiobook & 30-day trial.
2:05 Introduction to today’s guest, Zach Coelius (Syndicate Lead). Entrepreneur turned Angel Investor, and why he loves it so much.   
4:44 Zach explains his “pay it forward” mentality. “You never know who’s going to be the next Mark Zuckerberg.”
5:26 Zach explains the process of being an advisor to startups. Trading his network & knowledge for advisor shares.
7:52 Zach shares his startup advice to founders. The hard but important truth of firing people if they aren’t performing.
9:51 Jason reviews Zach’s syndicate on AngelList. Over $1.9M in backing, 350-400k check sizes, 1K minimum investment.
11:53 How do you find deals today? Zach explains the leverage of his network, and how it helps his deal flow. And organizing dinners to network with CEOs.
13:18 Jason and Zach talk about the struggles of entrepreneurship. Zach explains his Mike Tyson analogy.
14:03 Zach shares his early days as an Angel Investor, hitting his first unicorn investment. And how he’s become a better investor over time.
16:40 Zach shares a story of investing into a company based on the founder's ability to execute. And the type of founders he likes to work with. (Gritty, Humble, Hustlers)
20:39 What stage do you like to invest in? Zach explains his goldilocks zone of market validation. “The first point of a technology that you put in the hands of a customer…”. And why he doesn’t like investing just in ideas.
24:17 What qualifies for an investment from your syndicate? Zach explains the character traits he looks for. “The job of a founder is to bash through walls.”
27:31 Zach shares his two investment vehicles. One for early stage startups & one for later stage deals.
29:45 Thank you Audible for supporting this podcast. Go to for a free audiobook & 30-day trial.
36:06 Portfolio review segment: Zach shares how he led the largest AngelList syndicate exit with Cruise. Returning over a 10X to his investors within months.
39:39 Why do founders love doing syndicates? Zach explains the benefits of a syndicate.
41:21 Zach shares his other successful startup investments: Branch Metrics, Entrupy, & Signal.
49:22 Jason & Zach share their advice for non-accredited people wanting to invest in startups. “If you can’t afford to lose the money, then don’t do it.”  And why you should be wary when a VC sends you a deal.
53:57 Jason and Zach talk about SkySafe, a drone defence/airspace control company. Zach shares how he met the company, his decision to invest, and how Andreessen Horowitz squeezed his investment size.
58:04 Zach explains why he doesn’t like to join boards.
59:24 Jason and Zach discuss AngelList funds, how they work, and the advantages/disadvantages compared to syndicate deals.
1:05:09 Jason shares his advice to non-accredited investors using Republic/Seed Invest. Be careful.  1:06:59 Why don’t you take the easy money and join a top tier VC firm? Zach and Jason share their reasoning. The importance of independent critical decisions v. a committee decision.
1:09:22 Zach explains that all the best deals are weird at first. Using the examples of  Facebook, Google, Airbnb, Uber, etc.
1:11:37 Jason concludes the episode & advises new Angel Investors to consider backing Zach Coelius on AngelList.

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