No, I wouldn't ever say that to an entrepreneur but it's the painful truth. I just finished giving this advice to a couple guys who came to me. I thought I'd share it here because it's not the first time I've repeated it.
When VC's look at your opportunity they want to know whether it can be "big". Big is probably different for VC's than it is for you and they probably want it far "faster" than you do. If your case involves launching city by city in your European country, followed by another country in the EU and then maybe even one more before going global, forget it. This takes too long, has too many uncertainties, costs too much and is far too difficult for even the most seasoned entrepreneurs.
First, time! Going city by city and then country by country takes years. You first have to prove your case in each region and you basically re-start in each new geography. Why repeat stuff regionally when you could technically launch globally from the start? You're probably saying to yourself "yeah, but our case is different!" No, it's not. You're either going to do it your way (without VC) or our way, with VC. It's your choice and no one is forcing your hand. You may need longer up front to raise the money as you are selling a far larger case but you'll save time mid- to long-term if you do it right from the start.
Second, risk! Going region by region and then country by country is super risky. What works in one geography and culture doesn't necessarily transfer to another. Plus there are employment and regulatory hurdles to take. Finally, the time you've invested works against you. Competitors may have already sprung up in your second or third geography before you get there. They'll have been funded by the same regionally focused players as you in your home geography and then you're both screwed when you meet. Neither is big enough to mitigate the risk of a Series A financing nor revenue strong to push aside or acquire the other.
Third, there is cost! City by city and then country by country requires people and at times offices. You may be lean initially but once you go to another country, you have a whole new set of problems that cost money. You need local lawyers. You have to hire local managers who understand the geography and you'll have people travelling more back and forth. Add in competiting against the local guys and your budget need has just doubled or tripled.
Finally, there's management. Managing a regional and then EU role out followed by the international push is a management nightmare. Even those who have done it before may not be able to repeat their success. You actually need totally different skill-sets at each step which usually require totally different managers. The one manager who can do all of this while managing risk, cost and time exists but so do unicorns if you base it on the statistical chance of finding one.
If your case doesn't scale early and fast, there may still be a chance for you. Yet, it won't be as a venture backed entity. Of course there are outliers who have done it exactly so, city by city and country by country. This is not the norm. When you're pitching VC's they will hear this and cringe. You actually diminish your chances by trying to be conservative. Sure, you may find someone to bite early but you won't have enough traction when you get to your Series A or B round and will get caught gasping for air. Either the valuation will be far too low or the appetite simply not there. Think this through before going out on the financing trail. Either go big in your region and own your country or go global from Day 1!