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What they mean
At a basic level, the investor is asking if you are wasting their time or not. If you say that you aren’t raising right now, then they are wondering why they are in the meeting. You as the founder, therefore, need to let them know if you’re not raising right now, that you will be and are looking to build relationships with investors to figure out whom you want to deal with in future.
Alternatively, perhaps you requested an information meeting with the investor and therefore they’re asking this question to see if they pre-emptively can get in on the
deal without a lot of competition. You need to think carefully about why you are talking to investors and give an appropriate answer as to whether or not you are raising. Of course, the next question will be how long have you been raising for…
Get this in your head though! You are either raising or you are not. There is no in between. Fundraising is a big commitment and you won’t get it done if you are dabbling. If you aren’t really raising say ‘I am not raising, we will be in a few months and would love to be in touch.’
What you need to say
Are you raising or not? It’s a simple question unless you have particular reasons why you want to give a misleading answer.
“Yes. A lot of things are going right and since we got that article published in TechCrunch; a lot of analysts have been spamming us.
We spoke to a couple of investors who did inbound and so there was demand to invest in us, so we are going full on in the process, starting this week. Well with you actually! We know some other investors quite well, so it would make sense for us to spend some time together and see if we are a fit. I read you invested in bla company the other week. That’s a great deal. We’d be your next.”
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