Sequoia Capital Pitch Deck

Sequoia Capital is one of the leading investment firms in Silicon Valley. This deck is a template they recommend following.

Favorite takeaway: It’s like having the keys to the kingdom. You don’t have to guess what this investment giant is looking for. They tell you straight away.

8. Dropbox

Dropbox is a cloud storage service that lets you save files online and sync them to your devices. The platform makes it simple for users to share files and folders with others without attaching large attachments to an email. The team introduced the product at Y Combinator’s Demo Day in 2007. Since then, the company has acquired hundreds of millions of users and cemented itself as one of the most prominent unicorn startups.

The Dropbox team utilized its pitch deck to showcase its innovative product, explain its user engagement, and validate its business model. Investors quickly displayed interest, and Dropbox struck its first investor deal shortly after its Demo Day appearance. 

The Pros of Dropbox’s Pitch Deck

Dropbox’s presentation may seem outdated compared to many modern pitch decks. It could use more graphic design, but the information is clear and presented in an easily digestible manner.

The founders cleverly used the slide titled “In a perfect world…” to connect readers to the problem by encouraging them to imagine what life could be like if those problems didn’t exist. At the time, consumers weren’t aware that one could have “your files available wherever you are, on any device.” In 2022, this value proposition probably doesn’t seem so unique. However, in 2007, forgetting your USB dongle at home meant all your files were inaccessible. Ultimately, Dropbox changed how the world stores and shares files, and its pitch deck validates this point.

Dropbox’s pitch deck tells a story and encourages engagement by asking questions like “Why Now?” and “Why Better?” The audience is likely asking themselves the same questions, and the deck takes them on a journey by answering their queries at the most impactful moment.

However, we love the no-fluff approach that Dropbox took with its slides. The text is large enough to read, and each slide gets straight to the point. Every word has a purpose, and every sentence is intentional.

Dropbox’s Lifetime Funding

The Dropbox team leveraged its pitch deck to raise a $1.2 million seed round in 2007. The company raised over $1.7 billion in funding over 11 rounds.

9. Snapchat

It seems like Snapchat has been around forever, but it launched just over a decade ago. In 2010, it was just a new social media platform hoping to strike a deal with a capital partner. The company had a great concept, a cult-like following, and clear feature differentiation. While all those things led to its domination as a social network, the pitch deck helped tremendously.

About Snapchat’s Startup Pitch Deck

Investor pitches aren’t the only use case for pitch decks. For example, Snapchat created an impactful sales deck to reach brands with its advertising and marketing services – and it is one that any founder can learn from when creating a pitch deck.

The Snapchat pitch deck sacrifices a title slide to get right to the value proposition. Its deck starts with a bold and confident statement, “Snapchat is the best way to reach 13 to 34-year-olds.” This statement immediately draws advertisers’ attention – especially those targeting young millennials. The risk of grabbing viewers’ attention with this approach is that after making the statement, you must prove it.

Snapchat immediately validates its opening statement on the next slide with a message that encompasses its saturation among its stated age group. The slide reads, “More than 60% of 13 to 34-year-old smartphone users are Snapchatters.” Then, it follows up with another intense metric – “2+ billion video views every day on Snapchat.”

What can you take away from Snapchat’s pitch deck? First, leave all the fluff behind. Instead, include strong statements that captivate your audience, but back those statements with accurate data and actual metrics.

The Sales Deck Impact

Snapchat’s sales deck isn’t relevant to its capital raise, but the company earns more than $2.62 billion in annual advertising revenue. The foundation of these sales came from their sales deck, which the team shared with advertising prospects early in its operation.

In case you wondered, the company has raised more than $4.9 billion in investor capital since its inception.

10. TransferWise (Wise)

The Transferwise (now called Wise) team founded the company in 2010. Wise, a money transfer platform, allows individuals to send money overseas quickly. The two founders conceptualized Transferwise after trying to remit money and realizing the high associated fees. The same problem they experienced impacted tens of millions of individuals worldwide, and they earned billions of dollars by launching a solution to this common challenge.

What Stands Out in Wise’s Pitch Deck?

We chose some of the prior investment pitch decks for this list based on their approaches to minimalism. But in our opinion, Wise has the perfect amount of text for each slide, providing enough information to understand the concept without overloading the presentation.

The How It Works slide showcases how easily users can send money using the platform. Traditional processes required individuals to visit a bank, fill out documents, and pay hefty fees to transfer money to overseas family and friends. With this slide, Transferwise explains its expedited remittance process in four simple steps.

How Much Did Wise Raise?

When it comes to the best seed pitch decks, Wise is one of our top choices. Using the deck, the company raised $1.3 million in seed funding from IA Ventures and Index Ventures. To date, the company has raised over $1.3 billion from investors.

11. Tinder (Matchbox)

Match Box is the original name for the globally-recognized dating app, Tinder. Although many dating apps already existed, Tinder overtook the market by gamifying its platform – enabling individuals to swipe left or right to express interest or pass on another user. Match Box’s startup deck is an excellent example of balancing creativity and simplicity to generate investor interest.

What We Like About Match Box’s Pitch Deck

Match Box became Tinder, and Tinder went on to become the most successful dating app ever. However, success started with its pitch deck – and there are several reasons why the slides worked so well.

The slides are simple and minimalistic but use a real-world scenario to explain the problems daters face (fear of rejection) and the solution (Match Box). The pitch deck uses each slide to tell a story, and half of the deck simply includes screenshots of the application. It’s effective because it begins by introducing the customer, showcasing the user’s situation, presenting the solution, and showing how the solution solved the problem – similar to how a book or a movie would play out.

Finally, the last slide shows a transparent monetization model. Many dating apps struggled to generate revenue, but Match Box showed how it would utilize its customer base to create several income streams.

Match Box’s Lifetime Funding

In September 2016, Tinder received an investment of $1.4 million. Since then, the company has participated in three separate acquisitions.

12. Coinbase

Coinbase is a secure platform that makes it easy to exchange digital cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. As the largest cryptocurrency trading platform, the company earned over $1 billion in revenue in 2017. Since launching in 2012, it has scaled to offer cryptocurrency transactions and storage in over 190 countries.

Lessons from Coinbase’s Pitch Deck

The founders faced a significant hurdle when creating a pitch deck. In 2012, most investors were clueless about cryptocurrencies and the challenges faced by the small community of crypto investors. Therefore, the pitch deck had to educate investors on cryptocurrency and explain why the solution was necessary to the market.

Coinbase’s startup pitch deck explains why other solutions are ineffective (too difficult to use) while positioning the company as the ideal solution for its audience’s challenges. Furthermore, the pitch deck validated the existence of demand by showcasing rapid growth in user registrations, user engagement, and annual revenue.

Coinbase’s Fundraising History

Coinbase raised $547.3 million over nine funding rounds and participated in 12 acquisitions.