Ben Zises

Hi, I’m Ben Zises - angel investor, advisor, syndicate lead and fund manager. Most notably, I was the first investor & founding advisor to quip, Caraway & Arber (before each had its name). As a former founder, I’ve also experienced the complete life cycle of building a company which gives me major advantages: (i) founder empathy, resulting in higher quality deal flow (“access”), and (ii) a unique understanding of the startup journey, leading to my ability to identify what it takes to achieve outsized results. Read my full bio here.
https://angel.co/v/back/super-angel-fund
Stage
Angel
,
Location
New York, NY
Average Check Size
$50K - $100K
SectorS
B2B
,
Consumer
,
PropTech
,
Lead/Follow
Follow
,
Questions & Answers

Origin Story: In a couple sentences, how would you describe your path to becoming an investor?

https://twitter.com/bzises/status/1353417179207618561

Investment Approach: What are the key factors you consider when evaluating a founding team?

1) Unwavering ambition to build a multibillion-dollar company 💰 2) Relentless pursuit of perfection + product obsessed 📍 3) Ability to learn new things + absorb information fast ⚡

What's your style and approach when it comes to working with founders post-investment? What are the characteristics of founders you've worked well with?

“The most founder friendly investor on the cap table”

I strive to be one of the first checks (day 0) and leverage my network to bring in other strategic capital and resources in an advisory role. For the founders I work with, I am often described as their company’s #1 fan, providing continuous support and dedication for the short, medium, and long-term. View founder references > https://superangel.vc/references

If I'm coming to pitch to you or your firm, what's the one piece of advice you'd give me?

Over invest in your deck, both design + content. It's an easy way to stand out amongst the hundreds of other startups I review and shows the care, time and attention you've already put towards your business.

As an angel investor, how many deals do you aim to do each year?

15-30

How would you describe your own personal mission and values, and how do they impact the way you invest?

My focus is geared towards areas where I am most passionate and have an informational AND educational advantage: Consumer (CPG, eCommerce infrastructure) + PropTech + Future of Work, seed stage.

I personally experienced the complete life cycle of building a company: from identifying a problem/market opportunity, coming up with the “idea”, to painstakingly developing a business plan and road-map (both in my head and on paper).

I've been in a founder's shoes: from leaving my stable job, asking friends and family for money ($2MM raised from 30+ investors), to hiring and scaling a team, and more. I've also experienced similar ups and downs: from launching to widespread industry acclaim, countless press articles, gaining tens of thousands of users, iterating & pivoting 3x, pitching hundreds of VC's in NYC & Silicon Valley, to failing to raise a successive round of funding, and ultimately winding down the company (and moving past failure).

Those experiences, among others, give me a major competitive advantage over other investors: founder empathy and unique understanding of the startup journey.

What do you like best about investing in NYC, and what’s your outlook on the future of NYC tech?

I grew up in NYC - I love the energy and opportunity. However, I invest all over the US and you can most certainly build a GREAT company from anywhere. My outlook in NYC tech is that it will continue to attract incredible people, founders and talent and I plan to live and grow here for years to come.

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