Very, very sad news today that Luis Villalobos, Founder of the Tech Coast Angels and angel investor in 57 early-stage ventures, died suddenly yesterday at the age of 70.
I had the extremely good fortune to have Luis be one of the first clients of Growthink back in 1999. Luis hired us to do a lot of the "blocking and tackling" work in assembling a business plan for a fund/incubation concept - Gazelle Labs - that he and a number of the other principals of TCA had established. Truth be told, we should have paid Luis to work on the project.
First of all, because even at that time, he had forgotten more about entrepreneurship and early-stage investing strategy than most of us will ever know. And because of his attention to detail and intellectual rigor, he set a standard and an expectation of work product that we have tried to carry through with here at Growthink in the last 10 years. Wisdom worth many, many, many times the fees we earned on the engagement.
I have fondly reflected on my experience of working with Luis over the years. He embodied the best qualities of the American entrepreneur and angel investor - hard-headed and brutally realistic, challenging AND extremely giving of his time and energy in support of aspiring entrepreneurs.
He will be missed. May America produce more of his kind.