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Executive Summary - A Guide for Danish Startups in Silicon Valley

[fa icon="calendar"] Apr 12, 2018 5:21:28 PM / by Jakob Soderberg

Jakob Soderberg

One of the elements that are used widely in Silicon Valley (and beyond) is “The Executive Summary”.

When we work with Danish startups in Silicon Valley on the SCALEit program we use executive summaries to introduce the companies to our broad network of mentors, investors and partners of the program so that they are prepared when you meet them.

"Time is money and a scarce resource!"

Therefore, nobody reads an entire executive summary. Stay focused on making it easy for the reader to extract the most important information. It's a Silicon Valley mindset you can easily adapt to anywhere else in the world. 

In other words - a text only page is not optimal!


When we talk about an executive summary here at SCALEit we are looking for the following:

  • One page (not two - not three - just one!)
  • Format: (US Letter, not A4 - some still print)
  • Graphic and reader friendly (White space is good)
  • Focus on the MOST important parts of your business from an investor viewpoint


Here are some of the ingredients you should add to your executive summary:

Top of the Page:

  • Company name & Logo
  • your seven word pitch that instantly sets the stage

Right side (approximately two thirds)

  • More detailed description of the Problem/Pain you are addressing
  • More detailed descritiption of how you solve the Pain
  • Market Size and how you are going to claim your slice of the market
  • Your growth (either customers or users over the last 3-6 months)
  • Your ask. How much are you looking for and what milestones will you achieve (and when)

Left side (approximately one third)

  • Company basic info - Founded year, Funding, Grants, Cap table
  • Founding Team,
  • Key Metrics (CAC, CLV, Churn, Conversion rates etc.)
  • Go to market (users, customers, industry, geography etc.)


  • Contact information (email, telephone, address etc.)

(This is ONE way to create a one-page business summary. Ask 10 people and you'll get 10 different opinions). 

Remember: Don’t boil the ocean! The executive summary should tell NOTHING MORE than enough to trigger the response: "I’d like to know more" and thus, pave the way for the next meeting and perhaps a Silicon Valley Investment. 

Example of how to structure your layout of an executive summary

Are you interested in learning more about how SCALEit can help you open doors and accelerate your business?

Let's talk


Related articles: 

Topics: the art of pitching, investor pitching, executive summary, The Silicon Valley Way, Innovation Center Denmark Silicon Valley

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