Sample seed pitch deck: Netmaker’s $2.3M deck

    In a world where people working from home still need access to networks and a host of other use cases, netmaker lets users create and manage VPN connections without the learning curve, as Romain wrote last year when the company announced its seed round.

    Netmaker submitted its pitch deck to, and today we take a look at the deck the company used to raise its $2.3 million round.

    We’re looking for more unique pitch decks to break down, so if you’d like to submit your own pitch decks here’s how to do it.

    Slides into this deck

    Netmaker has a tight deck with 14 slides. The company told me it redacted some sensitive data (like financial information), but those parts are clearly marked so the deck still makes sense in context.

    1. Cover slide
    2. Problem slide
    3. Vision slide
    4. Solution slide
    5. Market size slide
    6. Product slide
    7. How it works slide
    8. Traction Slider (“In active use on over 10,000 devices”)
    9. Product evolution slide
    10. Go-to-market slide
    11. Road map slide
    12. Competition slide
    13. Team slide
    14. Closing slide

    Three things to love

    Netmaker shares a lot of information in just a handful of slides across what can be seen as quite a complex, technical space. The company has done a great job of keeping things accessible.

    Traction is king

    [Slide 8] Great traction forgives all other sins, and this chart points in the right direction. Image credits: Netmaker

    Having strong traction is great for any startup because rapid growth implies that a company has found something significant in the market and can attract new customers.

    That said, some of these stats seem like vanity stats to me. For example, why is it important to have 5,500 stars on GitHub? Does that translate into customers? Why is the number of 1,000 community members important? Netmaker could have tried to connect the dots: why are these metrics important to the company and how do they show rapid growth?

    I found myself tripping over the claim of “50% MoM growth over 6 months.” It’s hard to overstate how impressive that is, and as an investor I can’t wait to learn what the growth engine is here. How much did the company have to spend to acquire those customers? How can it continue on this trajectory?

    How it works

    [Slide 7] How it works. Image credits: Netmaker

    When your target market consists of people who design, deploy and maintain network infrastructure, you can bet that most of the investors you speak to are not fully aware of the intricacies of the market. I know VCs with deep domain knowledge, but even those with experience may have some pretty outdated information. The landscape in this space, like so many others, changes almost every day.

    This “How It Works” slide might be a bit at simple, to be honest. I would have liked to see screenshots of the actual provisioning/configuration screens to understand how difficult it is to configure a network or add machines. That said, this is a great base-level primer to explain the “Here’s what we do and why it matters” part of the story.

    A clear vision of the future

    I love how Netmaker doesn’t hold a punch in its vision for the future of its industry. This view may turn out to be incorrect, but the company is not confused. It’s refreshing to see such clarity and the company’s ability to align with its vision:

    [Slide 3] Clarity about her vision for the future. This is one of my favorite slides in this deck. Image credits: Netmaker

    The company is doing something really good here: it’s outlining a clear, bold, and differentiated view of the future.

    Now you could argue whether this is correct. Will no one at all own their own network hardware? No need to configure complex networks? I’m not a network architect, but that sounds a bit far. At the very least, the internet itself and the assistive technologies supporting Netmaker will presumably require some hardware.

    Nevertheless, I think the company is doing something right here: it’s outlining a clear, bold and differentiated view of the future and backing that up with the steps it needs to take to put itself at the forefront of this movement.

    In the rest of this teardown, we’ll take a look at three things Netmaker could have improved or done differently — along with the full pitch deck!

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