June 1, 2021

UVC: Michael Blakey from Cocoon Capital on struggling with Dyslexia, pitching to VCs, how founders can organise their fundraising process efficiently

UVC: Michael Blakey from Cocoon Capital on struggling with Dyslexia, pitching to VCs, how founders can organise their fundraising process efficiently

Understanding VC is a deep dive into how Venture Capitalists work. In this episode, I talk to Michael Blakey, Co-founder and Managing Partner at Cocoon Capital, about approaching VCs and making an unforgettable first impression. We go into detail about mistakes to avoid when pitching, crucial information for a pitch, and how founders can efficiently raise and close their fundraising round. Michael also offers insights about the differences between Seed and Series A rounds and the realities of not meeting expected targets. Candidly, Michael shares his struggles of growing up with Dyslexia and how it made him a better entrepreneur and investor.


Michael Blakey is the Managing Partner and co-founder of Singapore-based venture capital firm Cocoon Capital. Set-up alongside Will Klippgen in 2016, Cocoon adopts a hands-on, founder-first approach to early-stage investing. Before this Michael was an entrepreneur and since 2000 was a full-time angel investor who was named ‘UK Angel Investor of the Year 2015’, selected as one of the Maserati 100, and classified as a ’Business Angel you should know.

Key Takeaways

  • Challenges of growing up with dyslexia and how that prepared Michael to be a better entrepreneur
  • The hideous shoe story - Unique approach by a founder to stand out and get Michael’s attention while pitching to him
  • How to make a good first impression and mistakes to avoid while pitching to a VC 
  • Most important slides on a pitch deck that founders tend to overlook
  • Why some entrepreneurs can raise millions of dollars pre-revenue while some other entrepreneurs struggle to raise funding even after making significant growth
  • How founders can organise the fundraising process efficiently
  • How founders can answer 'what if Google tries to build this' effectively
  • Difference between Seed and Series A round investment
  • Realities of raising a bridge round or down round investment
  • Ways founders can create urgency to close the funding round quickly
Michael Blakey Profile Photo

Michael Blakey

Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Cocoon Capital

Michael Blakey is the Managing Partner and co-founder of Singapore-based venture capital firm Cocoon Capital. Set-up alongside Will Klippgen in 2016, Cocoon adopts a hands-on, founder-first approach to early-stage investing. Before this Michael was an entrepreneur and since 2000 was a full-time angel investor who was named ‘UK Angel Investor of the Year 2015’, selected as one of the Maserati 100, and classified as a "Business Angel you should know".