A reflection on “Winning Angels: The 7 Fundamentals of early stage investing” by: David Amis and Howard Stevenson
This book identifies sourcing, evaluating, valuing, structuring, negotiating, supporting and harvesting as the 7 fundamentals of early investing for “angels”.
Winning Angels begins with describing “sourcing” in an investment deal. By page 43, I was thinking “this sounds like a different version of Shark Tank“.
About Shark Tank: Shark Tank, the critically acclaimed and multi-Emmy® Award-winning reality show that has reinvigorated entrepreneurship in America, returns this fall to ABC for its tenth season. The Sharks – tough, self-made, multi-millionaire and billionaire tycoons – continue their search to invest in the best businesses and products that America has to offer. The Sharks will once again give people from all walks of life the chance to chase the American dream and potentially secure business deals that could make them millionaires.
“Sourcing or identifying entrepreneurial projects of merit is the first step in the process of making early-stage investments.”
Sourcing for angels is a little different. One, angels do not have the platform of abc to source potential investments. However, for someone that is interested in the early stages of investment or an entrepreneur that is desires the financial backing of an investor, the chapter about sourcing is a great place to get started.
Amis and Stevenson divided the sourcing activities into four groups
- Preparation activities
- Networking activities
- Visibility activities
- Focus activities
Investing feels a lot like gambling and I am not sure that I am that risky. But, if I were to use the information provided in this chapter, this is what I would do:
- Preparation activity – Write my one page about the type of deals that I will be targeting. Fun fact about me is that I LOVE one pagers. I make my team members write them all the time about what they are working on or proposing.
- Networking activities – There are so may ways to go about this and depending on the audience, I would have an adjusted approach. The joining Chamber of Commerce is a great way to network with different companies, especially when it comes to sharing quality deals (as recommended in the reading).
- Visibility Activity – My preferred method of creating visibility would be to share the knowledge that I have gained through an online course. I would market this course through social media and to budding entrepreneurs. There could even be a contest post course – just by finishing the online course and completing some sort of targeted post assessment, each “student” of the course would enter an opportunity to win an investment.
- Focus activities – This activity would be about narrowing your focus to a specific industry. It reminds me of the practice of “Nailing the Niche” that I wrote about in another class.