The Angel Investor You’d Like To Have

Amir Shevat,
Head of Product - Developer Platform at Twitter, Investor

Amir was asked to join Google back in 1999 and to pay for his flight to SV, so he refused. Years later - he was one of the first Israeli Google’rs, in charge of the developers relations, building chrome, android etc. He joined Yossi Matias and launched its first Campus in Israel. From Google he moved to Slack. It was a very early stage and he thought it’s going to be awesome. It felt great being part of something big, when all startup companies are going to be using your product.

Amir worked a lot, being very passionate about what he does. Working was the criteria for success, for identifying yourself. Amir describes the San Francisco people - how everyone measures themselves according to “what’s your startup”. 

He used to commute 2.5 hours to work daily. Although super fulfilled and successful - he started to ask himself - “What do I want to be?” The answer was simple: “happy, thoughtful, create an impact, be centered.”

After years in SV, he moved to Austin, with a great atmosphere and community, making sure to keep up his daily sports routine, be mindful about what he eats, having dinner together with his family and mitigating the pressure in his life. 

From a Tech Superstar to an angel investor

Last year, Amir saw 500 startups, made 13 investments and joined Innovation Endeavors. He sees amazing companies, 99% of the deal flow is through warm referrals from other VCs/angels, and he also made 1 investment that began with a cold reach. He likes to see himself as paying forward the value of experience and network, and not just money. 

“As an angel investor, you try not to do the DD - but rely on the big VCs that do it. You try to find the right deals and get the conviction from the founder. While the VC does the process and decides about the size of the check, as an angel investor - you don’t negotiate.”

Amir is very mindful of his time. The day time is dedicated to Twitter, the evening - for investments.

Amir doesn't believe in zero inbox or tools alike - tools need to serve us and not us serving them.

“You like the calendar to be with meetings you want to have, and not with meetings that others want.”

When I asked him about the choice of becoming an angel investor - he emphasized that one should have a strategy. In the beginning, his investments were random, nowadays he invests in Dev tools & SaaS. When he talks with the founders - he asks them:

“what will be a good outcome of this meeting?”

So far, he never took out the money for secondary investment. On the other hand - he tries to do pro-rata and increase his investment. Amir says we’re all ‘work in process’, and in 5 years from now - he’s going to be a VC. I’d definitely like him to be my future investor.

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