In terms of direct numbers, what can be considered a great financial upside (for investors) for a startup after 2-3 years of the first seed round?
You said … “Great”.
This is what moves the needle for the very first investors.
I invested at $1.5m pre. You sell for $150m+ before material dilution.
Or put differently, for a professional angel a “great” investment is one that returns at least seven figures. I put in $50k. I did 20 of these investments. $50k x 20 = $1m. A “great” one “returns the fund” … I get out $1m. 20x.
S0 20x is really, really good for a true angel / very early seed investment. But alone, it only returns 1x of my total portfolio. So not worth it, absent other wins, etc.
A really great one gets me to 5x alone. That’s be $50k = $5m. Again, 100x.
And I’m skipping over a lot of dilution here. The more dilution, the more the absolute sales prices have to about double, rough-and-tough.