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Entrepreneurs could give their budding companies a powerful financial boost by using a source of funding usually considered off limits--the retirement kitty. The author, a certified financial planner, does, however, caution company builders to leave a portion of those funds intact, using more accessible sources first. Thereafter, he argues, tax-deferred assets in a 401(k), SEP, or IRA comprise a personal venture capital fund that can do as much for an individual's business as for his or her golden years.
Angel financing - or funding from individuals with the time and money to invest in early-stage companies - is more accessible thanks to the gathering of such investors into networks, writes an erstwhile entrepreneur turned angel investor. The process is still arduous, but the author offers tips for easing the way.
Convertible debt and a discreet amount of bank credit are available to entrepreneurs seeking substantial loan financing for early-stage ventures, says a company founder turned private investor.
Angel investors are funding companies at the seed and start-up stage, as venture capitalists retreat from that market, says an angel investor and former entrepreneur.
Numerous factors affect how angels value a company. Primary are the strength of the management team and the size of the opportunity, or a company's potential to scale. Accompanying this article is a valuation worksheet that entrepreneurs can use to better understand what investors look for and to identify factors that can justify higher pre-money valuations. Investors will find it useful to compare companies and determine whether valuation should be higher or lower.
This informative piece explains a well-known method that venture capitalists use to determine "post-money valuation," which is a company's valuation at the time of investment. Perhaps more important, it provides valuable insights into why the returns expected by investors are often perceived as "too high" by entrepreneurs.
Fickle clients, fast growth, creative people -- crazy business! This entrepreneur watched his firm grow swiftly and his financial records become increasingly more complex, all while doing business with people whose first priority was not finishing the project on budget. He shares his experience dealing with creative workers, a quickly growing business, and his solution: strictly managed cash flow.
MotiveQuest founder, David Rabjohns, describes how he addressed key challenges in starting and growing his company--via bootstrapping--to number three in the "brand monitoring in social media" industry sector.
Securing funding for a business, be it a startup or a growing company, involves establishing a reputation and building relationships, writes the author. Funding options multiply once the good word is out about an enterprise, she notes. Included are tips for getting loans and other financing for both new and established concerns.
Credit cards allow entrepreneurs immediate access to some levels of financing. This author, who used credit cards to launch a company, says business owners who take his approach should focus first on the key tasks of winning and keeping customers.
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