Why Investors won't Sign NDAs

Wait... Why won't anyone sign your NDA?

Why Investors, VCs, Angels, Advisors, or Venture Studios – like us – won’t sign your NDA.

There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope. We give them a turn and they make new and curious combinations. We keep on turning and making new combinations indefinitely; but they are the same old pieces of colored glass that have been in use through all the ages.”

But then how do we have so many ‘new’ ideas popping up? Isn’t technology giving us the ability to create completely new things?

What about social media, machine learning, space travel, electric cars, smartphones and all of these other latest and greatest things that we’re sold as ‘brand new’ things every day?

Social media is simply a digital version of an old fashioned get together with friends; we can now simply do it without going anywhere or putting on pants. Zoom also helps us do meetings virtually and again without pants. I’m making a prediction here – we will soon no longer need pants. 

Machine learning is just our attempt at being gods, we are the original machine learners. 

Space travel? Well once upon a time someone took a step no one had taken before. We’re not getting into the Columbus, vikings, or land bridge conversation here – no thank you. Talking about not wearing pants is as controversial as we’re getting on this topic.

Electric cars? Come on. We’re just talking about a new way to use the wheel, right?

Smartphones are awesome but they’re like Swiss Army Knives. They are communication tools, like mail, message runners, hieroglyphics, smoke signals, and pigeons. AND then you add in a calculator, a recording device, a camera, video camera, the walkman, books (sadly), maps, flashlights (or torches as my sweetheart likes to remind me they are called), a level, TV’s, alarm clocks (and clocks in general), timers, calendars, notepads, photo albums, rolodexes (again you may not know what that is), measuring tapes, airline tickets, business cards, remote controller, and for some people even their keys. And there is more… But I digress.

Now let’s say I am wrong and there are new ideas. That YOU have a new idea.

Why then is everyone telling you that they won’t sign your NDA?

  1. They’re really hard and expensive to enforce.
  2. Investors, Advisors, Angels, and Venture Studios see a TON of ideas. By signing your NDA we might not be able to talk to someone doing something similar in the future, even if we don’t work with you.
  3. Ideas aren’t what we invest in. We want the people who can execute on ideas. Investors have made their money. They aren’t interested in going back to work. Trust us, you want to get this point, where your money works for you.
  4. You need to learn how to share the cookie and not the recipe. If you can’t do that, the likelihood that you have a revolutionary idea is slim-to-none. Remember, if you can’t explain it simply you don’t understand it well enough.

One final important thing to remember:

Every time you go out into the world of Investors, Angels, VC’s, and Advisors – not to mention Venture Studios like ours – and you ask someone to sign an NDA, we immediately know just how inexperienced you are. It’s like waving a flag saying ‘I’m brand new to this.’

No one wants to invest in someone who has a long list of early mistakes to make. 

You may think that we are simply making this up, that we have no idea what we are talking about. Or if you just need a second opinion (we literally have 5 second opinions as links to other articles below).

So please, do all of us a favor, and keep learning. Don’t take this personally.

We have a FREE ‘Ready for Funding?’ download, OR you can even take our course on: The 12 Answers You Need To Have Ready For Investors. It’s an awesome BTW – we aren’t biased at all.


You could go back out to the interwebs, and someday come back to us (we know you will).

If you feel like you are ready to get started with us you can click here to answer a few questions and we can get this party started!

Until we do see you back here again, have an amazing entrepreneurial journey!