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Investing in seed and startup companies is extremely risky: Angel investors typically realize about 85 percent of their total portfolio returns from 15 percent of their portfolio companies. Consequently, angels look only for companies that can grow rapidly. Entrepreneurs who pursue less aggressive growth are unlikely to attract angel investors.
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.
A highly successful angel investor and entrepreneur identifies and puts to the test a valuation calculator tool. He finds that it works very well, thank you. By answering twenty-five questions, entrepreneurs and investors arrive at valuations that can reasonably be used as a practical guide to investing.
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.
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.
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 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.
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