If you are on the cusp of launching your very own business venture, then you know the importance of securing your funding. The chances are that you have explored a range of potential funding options, from the traditional bank manager route to the more postmodern crowdfunding alternative.
However, none of these options capture the sort of input you want from an investor. Instead, consider the allure of the business angel. This seemingly ethereal being is not heavenly, doesn’t have wings and is far from biblical. These more fallible human beings are excellent funding sources as they are experts within your chosen industry sector. They are fonts of industry knowledge waiting to be tapped, they have cash waiting to be invested and they will be keen to help you get your business off the ground with their list of contacts.
Pitching to a business angel shouldn’t be taken lightly. They will scrutinize your figures much more vigorously than the bank manager. They’ll be keen to take a fine tooth comb through your business plan, and they’ll be eager to interrogate you on a personal level. After all they are investing their cash in your business, so they want to make sure that you are a safe bet. If you do manage to secure investment from a business angel, you can consider your startup idea well and truly validated. Take a look at these sure fire ways to secure business angel investment.
Forget turning up with a couple of scrap pieces of paper that shows off your business plan. You need to be much more professional and construct a well thought through business plan. The business angel you meet may want some time alone to go through what you have written. Ensure that you have detailed your profit forecasts and financial projections for at least the first three years of trading. More importantly, ensure that you can explain how you got to these figures. A licked finger in the air won’t do.
In your plan, show that you understand the dangers of risk. Identifying potential risks to your business doesn’t show that your startup is weak, it demonstrates that you’re willing to be reflective and counter any issues before they have even arisen. This shows maturity and business acumen that your business angel will respect. When they do listen to your presentation, they will make notes and refer back to your business plan. Prepare to be questioned on your gross and net figures so ensure that you know the difference between these financial terms.
Your plan needs to show why your business is a sound investment option for their cash. You need to show clearly the amount of money they can expect heading back into their pockets after three years.
The presentation itself shouldn’t be a flip chart and marker pen job. You need to consider investing in some excellent presentation software to show your ideas clearly in a professional and visual way. Powerpoint is great, but it doesn’t have the pizazz or conciseness of AI powered software.
Get suited and booted and learn your presentation. Don’t spend half an hour writing it and then have dozens of cue cards in front of you. Your pitch needs to appear natural and free flowing. You should have constructed your presentation weeks in advance, so you have plenty of time to hone and tweak it. Speak clearly, slowly and with enthusiasm. It’s all too easy to mumble, keep your head down and try to get through your pitch as quickly as possible. Don’t do this because you won’t secure the investment. It sounds odd, but you need to try and enjoy the whole pitching experience. Ensure that you look presentable and that you can endure the potential interrogation after the pitch. Your presentation is only half of the battle to secure the investment.
Ensure that you can speak about yourself. Detail your experience in business to date and what has brought you to this venture. Be honest, open and transparent. A business angel will need to be able to work with you on a personal level, so they will want to find out about your background, motivations and acumen.
Securing investment from a business angel isn’t easy. You need to be passionate about your venture and try to enthuse the business angel with your dynamism and vigor. With any luck they will see your effort, determination and startup’s potential and be willing to come on board with their cash, knowledge and contacts.