Making big returns investing in small businesses: An entrepreneurial approach to investing
Investors complain there are not enough good deals. Entrepreneurs complain that there is not enough money. The current investment structures are keeping the two parties apart.
50% of the Worlds GDP comes from small to medium enterprises, yet most of it is off limits to sophisticated investors. Learn how adopting an entrepreneurial approach with a fixation on liquidity can allow all investors to make big returns investing in small business.
Combining the best of angel investing and venture capital
According to the latest EBAN figures, the average investment for an angel investor in a single business in 2017 was EUR 25,000, and EUR 182,000 for an angel network. At the same time, venture capital investment starts with significantly larger numbers. Businesses looking to raise $500K to $2M often struggle. It’s the valley of death.
This workshop explains how, by leading investment rounds from $500K to $2M, and increasingly leading follow-ons, whilst bringing a global ecosystem of advisors and relationships usually available only at large VCs, an angel investor can combine the best of what angel investors and venture capital can offer.
How to steal like Steve Jobs - Learn to create the next unicorn - Learn how to think like a great artist, inventor, creator and innovator.
This workshop will show you how the great artists, scientists, musicians, movie makers, innovators and business creators all have one thing in common – THEY STEAL! You’ll learn how others create, how to develop your own creative mindset, how to learn from others and how to create like the best. You’ll learn the tools you need to start thinking like Picasso and Steve Jobs. Creating and innovating isn’t just for geniuses – it’s something that can be learned. And, once you’ve learned how to ‘Steal like Steve Jobs’, you’ll be on your way to creating something spectacular. Even if you don’t create the next unicorn, you’ll learn how to come up with winning products, services and designs that give you a competitive edge.
Whether you’re an investor, a corporate innovator or an entrepreneur, this workshop will teach you something that you can use every day.
7 steps to scale your start-up. How to invest early and add value to smart teams to get great returns
An interactive session for (1) Start-ups through Series A/B, (2) angel investors to evaluate and select scalability and (3) corporate partners seeking to work with and support great scale-ups
Great teams are built with a shared vision and an ability to execute it. Testing the team is the primary go/no-go decision for any investor or partner. How to do this will be explored in the workshop. There is a close linkage between the mindsets of great sporting teams and great start-up and scaling teams. Scaling is little understood and is often mixed up with the start-up process. Team selection by psychological methods and a focus on key step(s) are critical for scaling. This forces team restructuring, role definition and sometimes early failure to create pivots. Customer and channel commitment via partnerships and leveraging data will be explored alongside RoT (return on time) and lifetime gross margin by customer, channel, product and R&D phases. Investors can, by early application of these techniques, identify great investments via funds, accelerators and business angel syndicates. Corporations can, through partnering and proof of concept or pilot funding, get a first look at new technology or disruptive products or processes.
Converting yourself to an angel investor: What should you know to be a qualified angel investor
For anyone new to angel investing, this is an invaluable workshop that covers the most important topics of investing as an angel and tips on how to avoid the many pitfalls new angel investors often encounter. Marcel Dridje will outline of basic milestones of becoming a qualified angel investor. In this workshop, you will have an idea of what skills you should develop to be a startup-friendly angel investor.
This workshop is for corporate executives that manage innovation and corporate ventures, early-stage capital fund managers, M&A and business development executives, family office investment managers, entrepreneurs who are raising capital or planning exit strategies, successful entrepreneurs interested in becoming an investor or advisor, members of boards of directors, policymakers wishing to encourage the creation of clusters of innovation in their region, and service providers: attorneys, accountants, and consultants.
Assessment of Startups to Determine Investment Viabality
Prior to making an investment decision, we have to make sure that the investment opportunity makes sense from different aspects.(strategically, financially and technically). In this workshop we’ll take a deep look at startups DNA, lifecycle and characteristics in each stage. Also we’ll review what are the important key performance indicators(KPIs) in each stage of startup’s growth stage. We’ll present the structured framework to help investors make sure they are investing in the right venture.
Investment Readiness for Startups and Scaleups
This workshop has been designed for startups looking for early stage investment from angel investors and other early stage investment funds It will provide you with the required information to approach investors with the information they need to evaluate your opportunity. You’ll also get the chance to practice your pitching to a panel of angel investors and business funding advisors who will provide quality feedback.
Investing in the FinTech r-evolution
Financial Services are facing a perfect storm: margins squeeze due to zero to negative interest rates in Europe, Japan and US, reputational damage in the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis, increasing capital charges, skyrocketing compliance costs, generational shifts towards mobile oriented Millennials, progressive disintermediation by technology enabled startups (AI, blockchain, digital, mobile payments, robo-investing). FinTech companies have grabbed the opportunity globally to create transformational compelling propositions that can ultimately replace or revolutionize the operating models of incumbent institutions. Yet, innovation is not an easy journey and requires venture funding, transferable competences, entrepreneurial talent, educational humus and legal easiness. Proactive financial centers and forward looking regulators in New York, London, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore (to name a few) have started to flex their muscles in the attempt to gain a competitive international advantage by helping FinTech innovation to find its ways and promoting sound transformation of banking, asset management and insurance industries. FinServ marketplace has never been so competitive creating threats for incumbents and opportunities for innovators. This master class will help identify key trends globally, strengths and weaknesses of new technology shaping the FinTech r-evolution.
Sources of deal flow and identifying opportunities – is angel investing all about spotting unicorns?
This workshop is designed to explain how to find investment opportunities and which ones will be worth investing in, including the different sources of opportunities. It also shows how to get the right deal flow. It also covers the key agreements that you will be presented with in the context of seeing deals including non-disclosure agreements and matchmaking agreements
Arguably there are as many angel investment strategies as there are angel investors, not least because the definition of an angel investor is someone who invests their own money. Finding the right deals is a fundamental aspect of angel investment; poor portfolio selection will guarantee failure and even great selection will only improve the odds. Whether an angel investor is happy to try and spot unicorns, whilst accepting that the majority of their portfolio will fail to deliver any return, or whether they like to mitigate losses to improve overall returns, or any strategy in between, this workshop provides the fundamental understanding required to have the best possible chance of making angel investing activity a success rather than a failure.
This workshop explains how to find investment opportunities and which ones will be worth investing in, including the different sources of those opportunities. It also shows how to get the right deal flow and covers the key agreements an angel investor will be with when they first see a deal, including non-disclosure agreements and matchmaking agreements.
Spotting the deal and analysing the opportunity – “The Pitch”
This workshop is designed to describe the typical journey an angel investor undertakes in identifying and analysing deals. It explains the different types of investment pitches which an angel investor will see, how to interpret the pitch and what questions to ask. It also helps you to understand how to spot good business models. It has an extensive section on management teams and the issues to understand when making a decision whether or not to back them, including how to think about yourself as a potential member of the team.
Entrepreneurs pitch to angels everywhere – on social media, by letter, email and phone and in more formal situations such as pitch events. And pitches are like buses, they come in a rush and then there may be none for a while. A key skill in successful angel investing is to know how to spot a great investment opportunity and to move through the journey to understanding whether the deal is investible. This starts with the elevator pitch or receiving an executive summary, but the decision not to invest cannot necessarily be made then; deal analysis goes through several stages and at everyone a decision has to be made whether to carry on or stop – right up to the point when the deal is signed.
This workshop describes the typical journey an angel investor undertakes in identifying and analysing deals. It explains the different types of investment pitches which an angel investor will see, how to interpret the pitch and what questions to ask. It also helps you to understand how to spot good business models. Most importantly. it has an extensive Cohort on management teams and the issues to understand when making a decision whether or not to back them, including how to think about yourself as a potential member of the team.
• How to question entrepreneurs after pitching
• Understanding the oppurtunity
• Understanding the business model
• Understanding the business plan
• Structure of a good business plan
• Contents of each Cohort of a business plan
• Identifying what is missing
• The business plan vs the working papers
• Check list of the angel investor
Company valuation – it’s all in the price!
This workshop is designed to comprise a detailed explanation of everything an angel investor needs to understand in relation to valuing an investment, including how to consider this issue when you do not have perfect information. It explains the different valuation methodologies and covers areas such as valuation and tax incentives, the impact of dividends and the value of voting rights.
The financial purpose of angel investing is to make a return on capital commensurate with the risk undertaken with the money deployed. Whilst experienced angel investors include the enjoyment and fun of investing, plus the opportunity to share experience and help others, in the calculation of the value of their angel activity, at the end of the day, success is defined by the financial returns achieved from both single investments and from the overall portfolio. As the risks are so high, returns must be exceptional on the successes, not least because so many investments will fail to return anything. Realistic angel investors know that ignoring the price at which you invest must be sensible – invest at too high a valuation and not only will overall returns be reduced, but also that the stake they acquire will be smaller than they deserve. This latter issue will work out badly for them as they will have less influence post investment, but also means that they are in a weaker position when new funding rounds take place. The dreaded dilution impact from these later rounds will also reduce returns.
This workshop comprises a detailed explanation of everything an angel investor needs to understand in relation to valuing an investment, including how to consider this issue when you do not have perfect information. With so many valuation methodologies, potentially providing different answers even the best angel investors can become confused about what the “right” valuation should be. But this workshop not only explains traditional methods; it also describes the simple and effective (“back of the envelope” method used by experienced angels across the world. The workshop also gives context to valuation discussing areas such as tax incentives, the impact of dividends and the value of voting rights.
• How to value a project
• How to use a spreadsheets excel with valuation formulas
• Valuation at time of exit and valorisation of the investment
• Pre money - Post Money
• Methods of Valuation
Selecting a portfolio of investments – diversification mitigates risk.
This workshop is designed to help angel investors to contextualise their investment strategy. It discusses the timing issues relating to building an investment portfolio, portfolio investment theory and how and when to use third party advisers.
All investors know it is never a good idea to put all your money on black. How to turn angel investment from gambling to investing in an asset class, makes the difference between a smart and a stupid angel investor. Smart angel investors build a portfolio of investments over time based on a coherent investment strategy. Whether the focus is sector, stage or geography – or a mixture of all three – a good angel investor has a focus and becomes expert in investing in line with this focus. They try not to make the same mistake twice and this is a lot easier if the investment strategy is underpinned by logic. They also understand how to tip the balance in their favour by using clever techniques.
This workshop discusses the timing issues relating to building an investment portfolio, portfolio investment theory and how and when to use third party advisers. Critically it helps investors to set an investment strategy and contextualise in the foundations of reality.
• Portfolio investment theory
• Personal involvement
• 3rd party deal managers
Due diligence – invest in what you know not a dream
This workshop is designed to cover all aspects of due diligence in relation to an angel investment. It starts with an explanation of the facts and figures relating to why due diligence matters. It covers planning a due diligence exercise, the different types of due diligence which should be undertaken and what warning signs to look for. There are sections on areas such as commerical, people, financial and IP due diligence. It also covers term sheets and other legal agreements which an angel investor should consider, as well as the issue of entrepreneurs undertaking a due diligence exercise on the investor.
How can you know if whether you have a chance of making money out of an investment if you do not know what you are investing in? The most common mistake that angel investors make is not to undertake sufficient due diligence before they invest. But in this day and age when there is so much information at your fingertips, it is downright unwise not to take due diligence seriously. And angel investors no longer have to do due diligence on their own. Sharing due diligence is one of the best reasons for investing as a group or syndicate. However you look at it though, due diligence is a skilled and time consuming exercise. Weighing the effort with what you will find out that actually helps rather than hinders the investment decision is when it become an art rather than a science.
This comprehensive workshop covers all aspects of due diligence in relation to an angel investment; think of it as a bible that you can return to again and again. There are sections on areas such as commercial, people, financial and IP due diligence. It also covers term sheets and other legal agreements which an angel investor should consider, as well as the issue of entrepreneurs undertaking a due diligence exercise on the investor.
Not to be ignored, the workshop starts with an explanation of the facts and figures showing why due diligence matters. And it takes you step by step through planning a due diligence exercise, identifying the different types of due diligence which should be undertaken and, crucially what warning signs to look for in the due diligence process. Turning a deal down because the due diligence has identified a problem is a better outcome than investing and losing your money. Understanding the business plan and opportunity from a helicopter
Understanding what the pitch does not tell you
Due diligence - commercial
• Understanding the market opportunity
• Competitive environment
• Product price point
• Business terms and conditions
Due diligence - people
• Optimal team types
• Age and experience
• Adding new team members
• Motivating and incentivising the team
• Legal - good leaver bad leaver etc
• Your role in the team: short medium and long term
Due diligence - legal
• Different legal frameworks across the world
• Term Sheets
• Shareholders Agreement
• Company books and shareholder certificates
• Different types of shares
Due diligence - IP
• The different types of IP
• IP costs and other isssues
• Protecting and managing IP
• Data protection
Due diligence - financial
• Historical financilals
• Understanding financial projections - P&L, cashflow, balance sheets
• Dissecting the projections
• Share capital; the ramifcations of share options and convertible loans
Due diligence - exit
• Preparing for the exit
• Setting the exit objectives
Due diligence - co-investors
• Understanding venture capitalists
• Understanding lenders
• Understanding government support
Due diligence on you!
Due Dilligence Check List
Setting the deal terms – the art of the fine detail
This workshop is designed to discuss the issues relating to setting the deal terms. It covers the term sheet, negotiating the deal and the timetable for the negotiations, as well as issues such as warranties and indemnities, and drag along and tag along rights. It also explains ways of enhancing returns.
Although the lucky angel investor writes a cheque, gets some shares and makes a fortune, most angel investors know that such success stories are flukes. Professional angel investors understand the statistics and know that with so many pitfalls ahead, having the deal cemented in a proper legal agreement will significantly improve the odds. Going through the process of setting the deal terms is part of the due diligence exercise. From the negotiations about the deal investors learn how the entrepreneurs behave in an adult world, whilst the Disclosure Letter written to them just before signing may reveal some surprises not previously anticipated. In this workshop, investors will uncover issues that typically arise when setting the deal terms. It covers the term sheet, negotiating the deal and the timetable for the negotiations, as well as important facets such as the warranties and indemnities, and drag along and tag along rights. To encourage you to read it in depth it also explains ways of enhancing returns, by clever techniques relating to how the precise terms are set.
• Understanding term sheets
• Valuing a company
• Share rights
• Ways to enhance potential returns
• Shareholder Agreements and other documentation
• Warranties and indemnities
• Typical deal structures
• What's negotable and what is not
• Put and call options.
Negotiating the deal terms
This workshop is designed to help an angel investor to understand how to conclude a successful negotiation so that an investment is made. It explains the entrepreneur’s and the investor’s mindsets when they enter into a negotiation for a funding round. It covers how negotiations take place, the most important issues in the negotiation and the obligations which both parties will be entering into post investment. It also discusses the final leg of the negotiations which lead to the investment actually taking place.
Getting the price and terms of the deal correct on the way into an investment is critical to optimising the chances of high returns on exit. The deal terms are not only about price and number of shares acquired; other key terms are around shareholders rights, board rights, the obligations of the entrepreneur and good & bad leaver clauses to name but a few. Achieving a successful outcome to the deal negotiation is of paramount importance too.
This workshop explains how understand the mindset of both the investor and the entrepreneur and how to set a negotiation framework, before going into considerable detail on all aspects that must be agreed to close the deal. As an additional bonus it discusses how investors might like to behave during a competitive auction. Lastly, it takes you through the final leg of the negotiations.
• Understanding the terms of reference - money, involvement
• Approaching the entrepreneur
• What to do in a competitive auction
• Negotiating a successful outcome
• Investment strategies: convertible notes, options, loans
• Shares: Ordinar shares, prefered shares, convertible bond, warrants
Governance and deal monitoring
This workshop is designed to discuss the issues relevant to an angel investor once the investment has been made. It covers what to expect in terms of the help the company requires from you and what rewards are to be expected from providing this help, including the different roles you may undertake. There is a discussion of how an angel investor should act in relation to board and shareholder meetings as well as other more informal methods of deal monitoring. It describes the importance of the first 100 days of an investment and hitting milestones. It also describes common problems that arise and makes suggestions on how to resolve them.
It takes a brave investor to buy a minority stake in a private company and then forget about it. The point of being an angel investor is to add value, but how you go about it will probably be one of the most important factors to the speed of success (or failure) of the business. Get it right (especially in the first 100 days) and the company will be on an upward trajectory; get it wrong and everyone will be seeing delay or, worst, failure ahead. How should you help? When should you actively not provide any help? What should be looking for post investment? This workshop unwraps the knowledge of experienced venture capitalists and angel investors, so that you can avoid making obvious mistakes and concentrate on doing what is needed to help the entrepreneurs grow their business so you both make money.
The workshop explains the how to deal with your investment from the day you invest until the day you exit. It explains how you can help and what rewards you should expect. There is an explanation of the different roles you can take so you have influence both inside and outside the board meeting. There is a useful Cohort on how to deal with common problems that arise. Finally it has some useful advice on how to maintain a healthy relationship between the angel investors and the founders.
• Your help post investment and what rewards you should expect
• Hitting milestones
• The role of the board
• Board seat/directorships/observer rights
• Regular reporting - board papers and reports
• Shareholder meetings
• Dealing with common problems
• The relationship between Angel Investor and entrepreneurs
• Role of the lead investor
New funding rounds
Most companies that raise money from angel investors will go onto raise several more rounds of finance. This workshop discusses the issues relating to both emergency and planned funding rounds after the first angel investment round has completed. Up and down rounds are explained. It describes the different types of investors who invest in these rounds, including explaining what they are looking for. How to set the timetable for a funding round is explained. Reference is also made to more complicated funding structures, such as debt funding and liquidation preference.
To people who know the angel investment industry well, it can appear that raising funding becomes seriously addictive for entrepreneurs who have been successful once. It is a rare business that only needs one round of funding. If it is growing fast it will need more cash to exploit the opportunities that have been uncovered; it if is missing milestones, but still shows potential, it will need more working capital to keep going whilst the founders and investors try to prove what the business plan suggested.
This workshop is designed to cover both planned and emergency funding rounds, explaining the new types of investors who will join the angel investors on the shareholder register/cap table as a result of them taking place. It covers debt as well as equity funding. Other areas covered are factors such as share option schemes, the costs of raising funding and a typical funding timetable. Extra sections cover areas such as what later stage investors look for (and what they avoid).
• Up round and down round valuation
• New shareholders - angels, VCs, corporate venturers
• Deal terms
• Timetable considerations
• Pitching to Venture Capital / Corporate Venture / Funds
This workshop is designed to focus on the issues relating to an angel investor achieving a positive exit from the investment. It covers how to think about planning the exit, timetable issues and the different types of exit, including trade sale, MBO and IPO. It also discusses issues such as secondary liquidity prior to the final exit and tax planning. It also discusses the issues relating to involuntary exits when the investment has failed.
Whilst part of the point of angel investing is the satisfaction you get from the investment journey, achieving the exit is the point at which you can assess whether it was all worth it. And when the exit is very positive, it is not only the time to celebrate the financial rewards but also all the other ones as well, such as getting technologies to market, establishing a business that has created jobs and generated economic development. Exits through, can be very different from a simple sale on just one date by all the shareholders to someone else. You can have secondary activity before the final exit and exits can come in the form of asset sales, licensing, MBOs, IPOs and trade sales.
This workshop shows you how to plan for an exit and a guideline timetable to follow. It explains the pros and cons of the different exit routes. There is a critical Cohort on how to deal with an involuntary exit as well as a useful exit checklist.
• Planning for the exit
• Secondary markets prior to the exit
• Trade sale
• Licensing models
• Closing the company - voluntary
• Closing the company - involuntary
• The Exit Check List