How to Use the SEA Investor Directory to Fundraise Effectively

How to Use the SEA Investor Directory to Fundraise Effectively

Pranav Ashok
March 21, 2024

Fundraising is intense, time consuming and chaotic. Part of our philosophy to fundraising is to talk to as many investors in the shortest amount of time possible. Last last year, we launched the Southeast Asia Investor Directory, a list of 1,610 investors and 767 funds that are actively investing in Southeast Asia. Our founders have found this to be a useful resource to kickstart their fundraising process, and we believe you will too.

Here are 6 steps to use the Southeast Asia Investor Directory to build an effective fundraising process.

Step 1: Get Access to the SEA Investor Directory

If you haven’t already, sign up here to get access to the SEA Investor Directory. In the directory you’ll find 2 tables.

  1. Funds - The funds who are actively investing in Southeast Asia. The information includes fields like Stages, Areas of Focus, Location, Employee Size and Website.
  2. People - The people who work at the funds. The list is populated with their LinkedIn URLs, Job Titles & Locations.


  1. Copy Base – Duplicate the directory into your own Airtable account.
Click on "Copy base"

Step 2: Filter Investors

The SEA Investor Directory contains 1,600+ investors actively investing in SEA. As a first step, your goal is to create a long list of investors that are relevant to you.

Like any sales process, you want to start with and spend most of your energy on the investors who you want to invest and are most likely to invest. Most founders don’t pay enough attention to the latter and waste their time.

If you’re a Pre-Seed startup and trying to get a Series A fund to invest, you’re wasting your time. No matter how much they might want to, they are bound by their LPA (Limited Partner Agreement), an agreement between their investors that dictates what they can and cannot invest in.

On the flip side, later funds are often happy to talk to very early companies, even if they can’t invest, to learn about what’s happening and build a relationship with promising companies they might invest in later. It’s not bad to build relationships with later stage investors but it doesn’t help you with your current fundraise.


  1. Filter by Stage & Areas of Focus – Click on the People Table, and use the filters to create a long list of investors that are likely to invest. Filter the funds by Stage and Areas of Focus. While some funds are focused on certain areas or industries. a lot of funds are also sector agnostic. Be sure to include this in your search criteria.
  2. Angel Investors - If you're keen to raise from Angel Investors, choose Angel as one of the Investment Stages.
Filter Investors

Step 3: Qualify Investors

Now that you have a long list of investors that match your criteria, the next step is to further qualify the investors that you should talk to. We recommend investing a lot of time here to ensure that you are reaching out to the investors who are most likely to invest, and therefore are most likely to respond.

For each investor, ask the following questions:

  1. Have they made an investment in your space?
  2. Have they made an investment in a similar model but different space?
  3. Have they written about your space?
  4. Do you already have a warm introduction?
  5. Did they reach out to you?


  1. Research Investors – Click on the LinkedIn profiles provided in the directory to gain more insight on each investor's background and experience.
  2. Research Funds – Answer the questions above by clicking on the fund linked to each investor, and reading up more on their website or LinkedIn pages.

Step 4: Create Your CRM

Now that you have your targeted shortlist of investors - its time to copy the list into a CRM. I highly recommend using the Iterative Fundraising CRM, but you're welcome to use any CRM that you prefer.


  1. Copy Base – Copy the template into your own Airtable account.
  2. Remove Investors – The investors in the template are some of our favourite investors to work with, but they are there for illustrative purposes. Feel free to remove them if they're not relevant to your startup.
  3. Add Your Shortlist - Copy the shortlist you created on the SEA Investor Directory to populate the CRM with your target list of investors.
  4. Prioritise – Based on what you know and the questions above, quickly go through your list and prioritise the funds. 5 stars if they are high priority and 1 star if they are low priority.

Step 5: Contact Investors

Now that you have your prioritised list, it’s time to reach out to investors. The goal is to talk to as many investors in the shortest amount of time as possible.


  1. Start with Top 20 – Start with your top 20 highest priority investors.
  2. Find Warm Introductions – Find warm introductions for each of them. Having a warm introduction significantly increases the chances an investor will engage with you. The best source of warm introductions are other founders and investors. For the latter, if you have existing investors, they can and should be helpful in making introductions.
  3. Schedule in the Same Week – Schedule as many of the investors calls in the same week as possible.

Step 6: Update

Keeping the CRM updated is an effective way to stay organised - and to keep your sanity.


  1. Update Investor Information – As you talk to investors, you’ll learn more about what they invest in, the check sizes, etc. Update their information in your CRM.
  2. Record Interaction Notes – After each call or meeting, record notes on how the interaction went. You can do this by clicking on the fund record and adding a comment on the right side.

That's it! I hope this process saves you valuable time, and refocuses your efforts on the most important aspects of fundraising. If you need support on your pitch deck or decoding investor feedback, consider signing up for Startup Academy for more fundraising resources.

Hopefully this how-to guide on using Iterative's SEA Investor Directory has been helpful for you to find and qualify investors that are most likely to invest in you, and effectively manage your fundraising process.

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