Posted on Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011 at 12:51 am.
Exploring the web about venture capital partners or investors will give you a myriad of results, each of them offering a good quality of business investment opportunities and valuable resources in today’s market. But the challenge is how to go about attracting these people – venture capital investors or angel investors – to help you with key decisions to your investments? For entrepreneurs and investors, connection is the right key to help your business venture a success. Successful business startups are built around innovative ideas and leading-edge technologies, yet realizing these business plans require the right resources, information, infrastructure, and most of all, the right partnerships.
It all comes down to how well you click with people you first encounter. Clicking has always been a subjective art form. There is that special moment when two people click, rather than simply meet. Brothers Ori and Rom Brafman authored a book, Click: The Magic of Instant Connections, and Ori shared his ideas to business owners looking to assemble an inner circle of advisers, partners and investors they click with. He categorized the ingredients involving clicking into the following:
- Vulnerability – Exaggerating how many people you employ or boasting about your revenue will only attenuate the ability to attract investors to help you. Brafman’s research found that people who actually display their weaknesses are the best to click with. Just simply try to hang out with these people and bring yourself a box of pizza or invite them for a coffee without a scheduled formal meeting so you get to know each other as real human beings, is exercising a sense of vulnerability.
- Proximity – The advanced communication technology such as Skype, Yahoo Messenger, or Google Talk, is now widely used for most businesses in meeting with people. But Brafman advices that it is better to show up face to face. According to their research, you definitely click with people you meet face to face, people who are physically close to you. And the most important part of any meeting is what happens just before or after the actual meeting because that is when you take the time to get to know the people you are meeting with as individuals, and the chance to click occurs. That is very unlikely to happen when you are talking to someone on the phone.
- Resonance – According to Brafman, people who resonate are both Present and Flowing. Being present is about showing up as a real person and a fully engaged human being. Flowing is about being challenged while doing something you are really good at. He said that if you are talking to an angel investor, and you are just going through the motions of your elevator pitch, you are toast! People know when you are just acting rather than feeling challenged and being fully present.
- Similarities – You best click with people when you have trivial similarities, such as what sports they enjoy, what school they went to, what gadgets they like and a lot more. However, the number of similarities between two individuals is critical when you are trying to click with someone, according to Brafman. The quantity of commonalities overrides the qualities of those connections according to his research.
- Shared Difficulties – The experience of going through something difficult together and coming out of the other side to safety makes people feel as though they click. Brafman suggests that you acknowledge difficult periods you have gone through with your inner circle in order to stimulate this sensation in a business context.
You must take note that above all of these categories, you must not forget that you should connect with the right venture capital partners in order to take your business further; otherwise, you might just be wasting your effort, time, and money.
Posted on Monday, July 11th, 2011 at 11:03 pm.
by Nathan Jorgensen
This is a really interesting competition for those of you who have tech start-ups seeking seed capital funding.
The Citrix Startup Accelerator Global Challenge is a focused program for discovering entrepreneurs internationally for direct investment. We are looking for the best and brightest new businesses doing cutting-edge work in software technology, especially in the areas of mobile + cloud computing.
Posted on Tuesday, June 21st, 2011 at 11:57 pm.
He used to be a model but was rose to fame in Hollywood by playing romantic comedy roles in movies and in sitcom. He starred in “Dude, Where’s My Car?”, “That 70’s Show”, “Just Married”, and “What Happened in Vegas”, and a lot more. He is also the producer and co-creator of the supernatural TV show “Room 401” and the reality TV show “Beauty and the Geek”. But did you know that the comedian actor, Ashton Kutcher, is the most prominent entertainment figure in the high technology venture capital game, and invested more than his money into it?
At the age of 33, Mr. Kutcher has invested a huge amount of money, failed with his first attempt in the tech industry but his deep interest in the internet captured the attention of several Silicon Valley big-time venture capital investors. One of these big-time venture capitalists was the founder of Netscape, Marc Andreessen. He lured Mr. Kutcher to invest in Skype, a software application that allows users to make voice and video calls and chats over the Internet. And just within 18 months, he earned three times his money when the company was sold to Microsoft for $8.5 billion last month.
People will always believe in anything that a celebrity would talk about. But Mr. Kutcher did not make his way to venture capital world with a crushing noise just because he is a celebrity, but his understanding of social media and his talent for marketing brands such as Levi’s, Gatorade, Intel, and Pepsi, is invaluable to a startup. However, good looks and a little charm do not hurt either.
Mr. Kutcher has become a smart early investor in some of the most notable internet startups such as Foursquare, the mobile social network; Path, a photo sharing application; and Flipboard, a news reading application for the iPad. Since then, he has built up a circle of fellow heavyweight investors. He remains discreet with the size of his investments which he has recently been making through a partnership called A-Grade, a partnership between the manager of Madonna, Guy Oseary, and supermarket magnate, Ron Burkle. People in the venture capital world estimated that his investments would range perhaps from $50,000 to $200,000, just like what other early-stage investors would be investing in. Foursquare may now be valued at up to $80 million, and one of its investors who stand up to gain most is Ashton Kutcher, an early angel investor in this company.
Posted on Saturday, June 18th, 2011 at 2:49 am.
The world has changed. Women are getting more absorbingly occupied in the world of entrepreneurship today. This is because many women tend to invest more conservatively than most men when talking about financial matters whether within the four walls of their home or in the real world outside. Furthermore, women were always seen as being domestic, pious, moral, pure, gentle, kind, graceful, and beautiful. If a woman was placed in a different situation, she would always know how to compose herself even in a toughest situation.
In the past century, women have always been present in the work force as business managers or even business owners but not quite in significant numbers. However, in the recent years, the concurrence of legal, educational, demographic, and social development have begun to move women into the prevailing direction of corporate management and entrepreneurship as well as in venture capital investing. Accomplishing their dreams way up to the corporate ladder while fighting gender discrimination is a common life thread mostly seen among some of the most successful and famous women in business. And these women we see as powerhouses in the business came from humble upbringing.
Women also run companies differently compared to men not just in the lifestyle business but in employing people. This is because women are more deeply perceptive and can better suppress negative emotions. They are more likely to display good leadership because of their higher emotional intelligence. Women and men may have similar career aspirations, advancement strategies, and barriers to success but they have differences in the types of barriers and how they balance their work or life responsibilities.
The leading women of entrepreneurship today envisioned to make a difference to the global awareness and culture of entrepreneurial women in business. Amanda Steinberg, a 33 year old female venture capital investor, was able to raise venture capital worth millions at such a very young age. She started working as a Web Programmer more than 10 years ago and she saw how many unstable startups were raising millions. She knew she would not stay forever running a software company’s satellite office, so she started to look for a big and fundable idea. She quoted, “If so many people were successfully raising money for mediocre ideas, I figured I stood a good chance with a great idea. I at least had to try”.
Monica Dodi, CoFounder and Managing Director of The Women’s Venture Capital Fund, is an international, multilingual new media entrepreneur with a proven track record in creating, launching and building highly successful global brands. She founded several highly successful companies and even negotiated numerous licensing deals with Fortune 500 companies. She co-founded MTV Europe that later became the fastest channel in the continent. She joined Walt Disney Europe, and ventured a paper product business with a Disney license which was later acquired by American Greetings. She helped Warner Bros launched television channels worldwide and was recruited by Brandon Tartikoff as CEO, to launch an AOL’s Entertainment Asylum which became the fastest growing entertainment destination on the web. Monica has worked with other several venture capital partners and she is always on the cutting edge of the new media landscape, and has been working with new ventures in virtual worlds, music technologies, and social media as an advisor and angel investor.
As women are getting more vivid in the entrepreneurship world, financial institutions are now specializing in woman financing to allow interventions in terms of small business developments and sustainability. Woman financing is an innovative creation that empowers women to develop businesses whether they have been in a business for a long time or just starting out in business. It helps women who are first time small business owners or who have owned several businesses but need to get their projects off the ground. They also offer financial programs specifically tailored for female entrepreneurs who have no business experience or business lines of credit but these women have the courage and strong skills that are necessary for business innovations.
Posted on Friday, May 6th, 2011 at 11:19 pm.
As we know, venture capital lies on the opportunity of investing. It involves high risks and it can be very time consuming. However, if the ventured business grows it can reap a very huge reward. A few years ago some venture capital partners are holding back their expenditures amid the financial downturn, according to some financial blogs. This financial crisis made it harder for investors to get funding for startup businesses or business expansion but those who prove themselves during this period of financial crisis will be better positioned to flourish when the economy recovers.
According to the IMF’s World Economic Outlook report last January 2010, they forecasted 3.9% GDP from the said year and projected 4.3% GDP for this year. Some people thought that the global economy recovered faster than what was planned, but some believed that the recovery has been slower than they had hoped. According to IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard, a global recession has been avoided, so that a gradual recovery of world economy is present. But some developing countries have restored faster after the global crisis particularly in Asia such as China and India, and in Latin America such as Mexico and Brazil. Despite this unstable economic situation, the United States has always been a dominant force in fostering world innovation.
With the economy turning down and some educational concerns remain an issue; the United States has been desperately conscious of a changing world. Transforming ideas into marketable and lucrative products is the greatest skill of venture capital that was challenged by the globalization and technology breakdown in the past years. The venture capital community was more pressured to continue superior performance and maintain competitive edge as the global standards are arising. Since taking his office, President Obama has taken historic steps to lay the foundation for the innovation economy of the future.
The United States strongly focuses on innovation. The Obama Innovation Strategy builds on well over $100 billion of Recovery Act funds that support innovation, additional support for education, infrastructure and others in the Recovery Act and the President’s Budget, and novel regulatory and executive order initiatives according to the White House website.
This is an exceptional time for the venture capital community, and together as a whole, the industry must address venture investments and methods to make certain to have a continued growth direction for promising young or startup companies. The economic situation today creates ideal opportunities for angel investors and venture capitalists. The importance of venture capital lies not only in providing money for this innovation but also ancillary services such as selecting good firms, mentoring entrepreneurs, hiring executives, formulating strategies, and professionalizing companies thus, providing job opportunities for the Americans as well.
Posted on Tuesday, April 5th, 2011 at 11:46 pm.
So your bank declined after complying with all the requirements necessary in applying for a startup loan? It is very discouraging when after all the efforts you have invested in and the time consumed of securing all the documents needed, you were still rejected by your bank. This loan rejection could affect your business lines of credit for future business loans. But do not take it personally because there are always challenges when going through the business loans application process. Try to stay calm and find out why your application was not approved.
It is imperative to know and understand why your loan application was not approved by your bank. Most of these financial institutions would not go through the details as to why your application was declined because they are afraid they might be offending you, but knowing the reasons why can be crucial to your business success and it can be very helpful in your subsequent business loan applications. You may ask your lending officer politely and tell him that you understood why they would not be able to help you; however, you need to know the reasons of their disapproval in preparation for your next loan application.
After being turned down from your local bank, stay calm and do not lose your hope. The rejection of your loan application may only reflect the financial health situation of the bank, perhaps the bank is not really in good financial shape and are only offering loans to their best valued customers. But it does not mean that you are not one of their best valued customers, perhaps these clients are their loyal customers who have been in business with them for such a very long time. If you have been their client for such a very long time as well, perhaps you were the last one to apply.
There are few best options left for you in acquiring startup loans or seed capital for your startup business. Your best solution is to look for a financial firm that offers unsecured business loans which do not demand for many requirements unlike your local conventional bank. It is best to partner with this type of unsecured business financing firm who understands your financial needs and helps you obtain unsecured lines of credit.
There are angel investors network as well that can provide you seed capital that eliminates unnecessary applications which could also have resulted in disapproving your previous loan application. This network of investors may help you analyze your business plan, offer essential coaching for entrepreneurs seeking to raise venture capital, and will work with you to accomplish your goals. Partnering with angel investors for your startup business enables your business to succeed and they will continue to help your existing business for future expansion.
There are several financial institutions other than banks where you can obtain business funding for your startup business or business expansion. If you are not familiar in your area, you may search on the internet and apply through online, or you may call their hotline numbers and they would be happy to assist you with your financial needs.
Posted on Thursday, March 24th, 2011 at 1:21 am.
Today’s economic situation creates ideal opportunities for angel investors and venture capitalists. It was reported that the world’s economy today may appear to be improving statistically but many believe that the global economic conditions are only getting worse. When a high intensity earthquake and ensuing tsunami devastated Japan last Friday – March 11, 2011, the world was shocked and in great turmoil.
Japan, as one of the richest countries of the world is currently suffering from nuclear crisis that may influence the global economy, and may affect the health condition of the nation and its neighboring countries. It was the worst earthquake experience that this country ever had, and the worst calamity that ever happened to this country. Japan gets more than a quarter of their power from nuclear energy. The country has several nuclear reactors and became the third largest nuclear power user in the world providing 34.5% of its electricity. So many countries depend on nuclear power. But what happened in Japan recently made safety officials seek desperately on how to avert catastrophe because this nuclear meltdown is enough to impact human health.
Prior to the catastrophic event in Japan, several countries experience tragic situations as the strong forces of nature hit these countries while some experience chaos and wasted so many lives due to civil wars because of political ill-power or political dynasty. Following are just few of the major disasters encountered by some countries today, creating a humongous effect in their economies.
- A strong earthquake wreaked havoc in New Zealand last month and killed so many people while hundreds are still missing and left damages that caused billions of dollars.
- The wettest season ever in Australia happened earlier this year where one of its biggest cities and some towns were ravaged by heavy floods, killed few people but affecting thousands of families and establishments that cost billions of dollars in its damages.
- In south-eastern Brazil as well, they experienced the worst natural disaster after several decades. More than 500 people were known to have died in heavy floods and damaged a huge amount of money in their properties.
- Egypt encountered its first real international crisis and the biggest disaster since the Iranian revolution that happened three decades ago, pushing the Egyptian regime out of power. This also caused several civilian lives and affected a lot of foreign workers in the country.
- The people power started by the Egyptians subsequently brought tumultuous revolutions by Libyan and Bahraini people, still with the aim of pushing their leaders out of power due to political dynasty or regime. These countries are major producers of oil and employed thousands of foreign workers but they were vastly affected because they have to be sent back to their own countries.
- Saudi Arabia and Qatar are afraid to be the next middle-eastern countries to have possible signs of hostilities. According to some economists, if this would ever happen this could be the worst catastrophe that would eminently disturb the global economy.
To raise venture capital is one of the solutions to economic recovery today. Angel investor networks are very positive of seeing their money grow by investing in start-up businesses with potential, or in some business establishments that are still in the recovery phase after the catastrophe. Those who have good business lines of credits are very much capable of acquiring these unsecured business loans quickly. Entrepreneurs and investors can easily connect with each other no matter which part of the world they are because of the advancement of technology.
Posted on Tuesday, March 1st, 2011 at 4:42 am.
Angel Investor is also known as business angel or informal investor. The term Angel originally comes from Broadway that was used to describe wealthy individuals who provided money for theatrical productions. Angel investors are opulent individuals who organize themselves to provide seed capital for start-up businesses and share their knowledge to an entrepreneur on how to run the business. They mentor another generation of entrepreneurs by making use of their wide experiences and networks. Most of these investors are retired entrepreneurs or executives who are interested in investing their money and wanted to stay abreast of the business development apart from monetary return. They are also good sources of useful contacts allowing entrepreneurs the opportunity to network with others in their industry.
According to a Harvard report by William R. Kerr, Josh Lerner, and Antoinette Schoar, start-up companies funded by angel investors are less likely to fail than those companies who rely on other forms of initial financing. Financial institutions like banks offer loans to entrepreneurs but they demand for payment of interest on the invested capital, while angel investors usually get considerable control over company’s decisions, apart from owning a significant portion of the company.
Venture Capitalists, on the other hand, contrive the merged money of others in a professionally-managed fund. They are corporate entities that pool money from a range of institutional and individual investors. They usually possess greater expertise in leading companies through successive funding stages leading to an Initial Public Offering or IPO. For new companies with limited operating history and are too small to raise capital in the public markets, small companies that have not yet reached the point where they are able to obtain a bank loan or complete a debt offering, Venture Capital is very much appealing.
Venture Capital firms are much less likely to invest in startup companies at the seed capital stage. This is because the range of venture capital transaction is large around US$500,000 to US$10 million, or above while the range of angel investor transaction is typically from US$25,000 to US$100,000 for an individual, and up to US$1 million, or more, when acting in a group. However, venture capital may provide second round financing after angel investors.
Posted on Friday, February 11th, 2011 at 12:18 am.
Venture Capital is a finance that is furnished to start-up companies that have high potential growth but are too small to raise capital and are not yet capable of obtaining a bank loan. The ventured capital fund which is also called as seed capital makes money in exchange for an equity stake of the company it invests in. They usually get considerable control over company’s decisions, apart from owning a significant portion of the company.
These financial resources are vital for entrepreneurs who have projects such as product innovation or research development that needs potential investors. Financial institutions like banks offer loans to entrepreneurs however, they demand the payment of interest on the invested capital. Angel Investors on the other hand, are mostly opulent retired individuals who are willing to venture capital in early-stage businesses or expanding enterprises, in exchange for stocks and bonds of the company. These enable them to stay abreast with the development of the business sector even while enjoying their retirement.
Naturally, these entrepreneurs need significant support to get their ideas off the ground. It is imperative to have a healthy system of connections of lawyers, accountants, and other business professionals who understand the challenges of start-up companies in establishing a feasible Angel Investor Network, with specialized services that include intellectual property protection, auditing, workforce development, and Initial Public Offering (IPO) registration. At an early stage of the business development, an experienced Angel Investor can contribute knowledge and skills to an entrepreneur on how to run the business. They may also be good sources of useful contacts allowing entrepreneurs the opportunity to network with others in their industry.
Posted on Monday, February 7th, 2011 at 10:28 pm.
I have been doing some optimization jobs for entrepreneurs and investors’ website, but I do not have a full knowledge on what the business is really all about. All I know is that, this is about business investment, yet, I still can not figure out how it goes, and how it works. Until I made a little research, I completely understood on what type of business this website is offering.
I admit this is the first time I have encountered the words Angel Investor and Venture Capital. From my own point of view, without having knowledge yet of what an Angel Investor means, I thought it is an individual who seems like an angel lending his money to those who need capital for investment. And perhaps some necessary procedures must be followed and legal documents must be secured for this is a financial matter that is always a very sensitive case in regards to business.
My own perception was not quite far from what Wikipedia has explained. So, Angel Investors typically invest their own fund. These opulent individuals organize themselves to share research and merge their own investment capital. Most of these investors are retired entrepreneurs or executives, who may be interested in angel investing for some reasons that go beyond monetary return, such as being acquainted with the latest developments in the business sector, and mentoring another generation of entrepreneurs by making use of their experience and networks on a less than full-time basis.
According to a Harvard report (by William R. Kerr, Josh Lerner, and Antoinette Schoar), start-up companies funded by Angel Investors are less likely to fail than those companies who rely on other forms of initial financing.
For new companies with limited operating history and are too small to raise capital in the public markets, Venture Capital is very much appealing. Basically, these small companies have not yet reached the point where they are able to obtain a bank loan or complete a debt offering. Investing in small and less mature companies is risky for Venture Capitalists and so they usually get considerable control over company’s decisions, apart from owning a significant portion of the company.