The Five Things Investors Don’t Want To Do To Your Startup

brett fox
5 min readNov 29, 2023

When you first start meeting angel investors and Venture Capitalists, there are things you believe that investors want to do. You believe these things about investors not because you have any data or evidence.

Picture: Depositphotos

Instead, you believe these things about investors because they play on our worst fears. The problem is you can significantly hurt your chances of raising money believing this misinformation.

I don’t want this to happen to you. There are five things you likely believe investors want to do to your startup that investors really don’t want to do.

I’ll contrast these five fears you have about what investors want to do with what they actually do want to do.

5. Investors don’t want to steal your idea

Imagine this. You get introduced to a prospective investor, but you’re worried that the investor is going to steal your idea and start a competing company. So, you decide to protect yourself by asking for the investor to sign an NDA.

Let me give you an example of what happened to me. My two co-founders, “Jim” and “John”, and I were having a second meeting with a prospective investor. In this meeting, we were going to do a deep dive technically with the investor.

The investor, Jim, John, and I were all seated at the conference table when John, our VP Engineering, surprised me by asking the investor to sign an NDA. The investor said, “We can stop now. I’m not signing an NDA.”

Fortunately, John backed down, and we continued with the meeting.

The investor was right not to sign the NDA. And the reality is that investors very rarely sign NDAs. If he had signed the NDA, there’s a chance we could have sued him if he invested in a similar company to ours. That’s a risk that no investor will take.

Investors stealing your idea is about the furthest thing from an investors mind. Investors want to invest in your idea, not steal your idea.

Now, I’m not saying that your idea or pitch deck will not be shared with people you don’t want it shared with. It happens. But, ask yourself this. How great a business do you have if someone can start a competing business just…



brett fox

I work with startup CEOs to help them grow their businesses . I built several businesses from $0 to >$100M. Learn more at