Business & Finance

Fireside Chat with Michelle Wang: Early Stage Startup Fundraising and Pitching

June 6, 2021

by Michelle Wang, Co-founder of Lair East Labs

Michelle is an early-stage startup investor, connector and community builder. She is passionate about supporting founders worldwide to build great ventures. Before founding Lair East Labs, she spent 9 years working at public accounting firms in both China and the U.S., including KPMG and PwC. Her experience covers industries such as manufacturing, construction, chemical, consumer goods, real estate, and financial services, with expertise in business strategy, operation management, and corporate finance.
As the co-founder of Lair East Labs, Michelle spearheaded the only investment-driven accelerator in New York City that connects global founders with the US and Asia markets. With 23 startups across 7 cohorts and 2 exits, Lair East Labs has successfully helped its portfolio companies expand business activities to 6 continents and raised more than 33 million USD in total.

Lair East Labs is a startup accelerator based in New York that empowers founders to expand internationally. At the heart of Lair East Labs lies the 10-week accelerator. Each year 8 -12 startups take on our program and receive investments of $50K. Our 10-week program combines the best of two worlds – learn from alumni founders of top Silicon Valley-style accelerators and gain access to a mentor and investor network with extensive experience navigating the Asian markets. In the first three years of operation, our portfolio companies have raised $33 million funding after completing the accelerator. In 2019, Lair East Labs was nominated as one of the “Top 100 Accelerator Worldwide” by Crunchbase.


1. Are you an aspiring entrepreneur or started your business already?

A. Aspiring Entrepreneur
B. Started Business

2. Are you committed to a year filled with growth and accountability and have the time to contribute peer to peer mentorship to other community members while growing together year after year?

A. YES I have the time and fully committed
B. NO I have limited time and would prefer to pop in and out as needed

3. Are you open to travel and gathering in person for strategy sessions and events, or would prefer to be remote and fully online?

A. Open to travel
B. Virtual

4. Do you have a detailed business plan and strategy in place to grow your company even if you did not start it yet?

A. Yes
B. No

5. Are you willing to learn new skills, get vulnerable, and focus on accountability even when things get hard along the way?

A. Hell YES!
B. Willing to Try