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Nov. 20, 2020

#240: Gale Wilkinson, Founder and Managing Partner of Vitalize Venture Group, a Seed-Stage Fund and Angel Group

#240: Gale Wilkinson, Founder and Managing Partner of Vitalize Venture Group, a Seed-Stage Fund and Angel Group

Gale Wilkinson is the Founder & Managing Partner of Vitalize Venture Capital, a seed-stage fund and angel group based in Chicago and San Francisco. Gale previously started two businesses, both of which failed, teaching her valuable lessons about what does not work...


Gale Wilkinson is the Founder & Managing Partner of Vitalize Venture Capital, a seed-stage fund and angel group based in Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Gale previously started two businesses, both of which failed, teaching her valuable lessons about what does not work at the early stage. She loves helping founders with startup strategy and is currently conducting research on how to innovate on the legacy VC model. 

Vitalize Venture Capital is an early-stage venture capital platform consisting of two funding entities: VitalizeVC and Vitalize Angels. VitalizeVC is a $16MM fund that invests in scalable software companies, and Vitalize Angels is an angel network of 300+ investors that invests in B2B software companies in the Future of Work. Vitalize Venture Group has invested in over 60 companies, deploying $40MM in capital since its launch in 2012.

Some of the Topics Covered by Gale Wilkinson in this Episode

  • What Vitalize Venture Group is focused on today (Angel Network + Fund)
  • How Gale started an Angel Network out of 2 failed businesses and the entity structure
  • What Gale did to source deals in the early day of the angel network
  • The importance of writing checks early
  • The diligence process
  • How Gale decided to start a fund and how long it took to raise the $16M fund they closed
  • Gale's experience as a Kauffman Fellow
  • How the Angel Network and the fund fit into the greater Vitalize Venture Group
  • The diversity committee Gale created for Vitalize Venture Group and what it entails
  • How the deal sourcing looks today for Vitalize Venture Group
  • The value add of working with Vitalize Venture Group
  • How Gale spends her time today at Vitalize Venture Group and what the team consists of
  • Some of the mistakes Gale sees early-stage founders making
  • Gale's advice around equity splits and founder agreements for founders
  • How Gale began teaching a course around investing at Notre Dame
  • Creating a brand for a VC firm
  • What founders should think about before raising venture capital
  • What founders should ask VCs when having meetings with them
  • Hiring for culture add vs. culture fit
  • The future plans for Vitalize Venture Group
  • The books Gale is reading now
  • How Gale recharges outside of work

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