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Is There Venture Capital and Angel Investor Money Out There?

March 4th, 2009 · 4 Comments

Angel investors, fund managers, investment groups, and early stage VCs are finding golden opportunities in these economic times. Entrepreneurial America has never been more vibrant, creative, productive or innovative than when the markets are down. The collapse of public stock values for even “Blue Chip” companies is driving investors to seek alternate ways to recover their portfolio losses. With the cost of key business inputs (labor, rents, technology) lower than ever, the time is right for entrepreneurs to seek private capital to expand their businesses and lead the economic recovery.When all the fundamentals of a successful business are present (growing target market, product that satisfies an unmet need in the market, and a management team with the knowledge and experience to execute) all firms need to succeed is simply good old-fashioned growth capital. Savvy investors aren’t throwing money at early stage companies, but they are looking to investigate, identify and selectively invest in those companies with the greatest potential for high returns. And to attract this capital, these companies — in such dynamic growth arenas as healthcare & biotechnology, alternative & green energy, digital media, and software—need to get the word out and present their case. They need to reach out and pitch investors at venture conferences and angel groups. Entrepreneurs seeking to get their companies in position to lead the economic recovery need be where the investors will be to tell their stories and inspire belief in their products.
According to the National Venture Capital Association 3,808 ventures raised VC funding in 2008 totaling $28.3 billion. And, according to the Center for Venture Research 70,000 ventures were funded by angel investors last year totaling $37.2 billion. Remarkably, this was after the “recession” had officially begun. The money hasn’t disappeared, it is just being judiciously apportioned by the venture and angel markets. Capital is still out there and with the right plan entrepreneurs can get their share of it.

How can investors and entrepreneurs find each other in these economic times? According to Karen Rands, President of Launch Funding Network, “One of the best ways for entrepreneurs to link up with investors is through regional conferences such as the Southeast Private Equity Conference (SPEC) being held on April 14th and 15th, the Atlanta SE Venture Conference, the Florida Venture Forum or the New York Private Equity Forum. According to Ms. Rands, conferences like these offer opportunities for investors and entrepreneurs to meet and learn about each other in an informal atmosphere that is conducive to discussion and sharing information. Typically there is a screening process to ensure a good fit between the companies and the investors attending the conference.Added Ms. Rands, “Last year, SPEC brought together nearly 200 attendees including investors representing over $560 Million in capital. Deals were done, resulting in millions of dollars being invested in companies looking to respond to their market opportunities. Angel Investor M. Horton had this to say about SPEC 2008, “Congratulations on a superb job on SPEC — great organization, many interesting companies and an attendance that far exceeded my expectations.”
Atlanta is rapidly becoming the hotbed of innovation and capital formation in the Southeast. Not surprisingly, there are three venture capital forums scheduled for 2009. SE Venture Conference, Venture Atlanta and the Southeast Private Equity Conference (SPEC) all seek to help the economy by connecting worthy companies with investors. SPEC 2009 is unique because it benefits the early stage company that is seeking angel investors as well as early stage venture capital funds. It has been scheduled to precede the Angel Capital Association’s national conference so that the members of those angel groups can conveniently travel one day early to attend SPEC and gain the added benefit of looking at great companies that may be of interest personally or to take back to their Angel groups.

 

These venture conferences are poised to be pivotal events and have profound impact on the market. Entrepreneurs and investors seeking to be economic architects- builders of change that will bring prosperity to all involved – should make plans to attend conferences such as SPEC 2009 so they can meet, connect and build the future together.
Listen to my commentary: Is There Venture Capital Out There?

AND FOR Entrepreneurs wondering how  to pitch at a venture conference and stand out in a crowd…tune in to http://www.blogtalkradio.com/karen-rands for the Friday March 6 show at Noon EST
Part 1:  Where to find investors and ways to improve your delivery to investors
1.  Rolodex – Be Bold
2.  Free Entrepreneur events – University Competitions, SBDC
3.  Angel Investor Groups – Angel Capital Association, NBAI
4.  Paid Events – Venture Conferences, Private Equity Conferences
(SPEC) Southeast Private Equity Conference, www.sePrivateEquity.org , April 14-15 in Atlanta at the prestigious 103 West in Buckhead. Entrepreneurs and Investors Register at www.sePrivateEquity.com/register.html Sponsor withing to advertise and promote their involvement with entrepreneurs and investors should visit www.sePrivateEquity.org/sponsorship.html .   Learn more about SPEC 2008 at www.sePrivateEquity.org/success.html

 

 

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Tags: Entrepreneur Biz-Buzz · Entrepreneurs Seeking Capital Corner · In The News

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Robin Kovaleski // Mar 9, 2009 at 8:06 am

    This is a great blog post underlining the opportunities that are available to entrepreneurs, especially given the current economic climate. And Ms. Rands is right – the best place for entrepreneurs to link up with investors is at these types of forums. The Florida Venture Forum is holding a panel in Melbourne, Florida on March 26th for just this reason. It is for entrepreneurs, emerging growth companies, investors and professionals wanting to learn more about early and mid-stage equity investment trends in Florida. We also are gearing up for our Second Annual Early Stage Florida Venture Capital Conference in Orlando on May 15, where 7 out of the 15 companies that presented last year attracted funding. We hope that entrepreneurs and emerging companies will see the current market as an opportunity rather than focusing in on only the negative messages.

  • 2 ebsblog // Mar 9, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    I appreciate the encouraging, yet challenging words. —Encouraging that capital should be out there, but challenging that one should not be timid or defeatest in their approach to getting in front of angels and vcs.

  • 3 Mark Wilton // Nov 21, 2009 at 3:21 am

    I am an investor/Lender.We focus on Seed Capital, Early-Stage, Start-up Ventures,existing LLC and total completion and expansion of investment projects with immediate funding.Have extensive corporate and private background.With mammoth sized connection portal.Can Fund excess of $5M multiple projects,Equity ,mortgages and open to long term biz r/ship with partner with funding sustaining our company 3 win policy. Contact: mark_wilton03@yahoo.com

  • 4 Nekendamkaf // Sep 21, 2010 at 11:59 am

    I’m so glad I found your blog. It gives me good advice. I’m going to check out your videos on youtube.

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