You’ve probably heard stories of Angel Investors swooping in to help fund a company. In today’s tight financial environment, it almost sounds like an urban myth. But wealthy individuals who invest in private companies do exist. And they are more plentiful than you might imagine. You might already know several.
Now, I wouldn’t count on Donald Trump writing you a check that solves all your problems, but if you’re ready to start looking for an investor, here are 3.5 places to find your own Angel.
(1) Next Door
Many Americans are surprisingly sophisticated in their investments. And many outwardly frugal folks are sitting on a sizeable retirement nest egg. With interest rates at all time lows, many investors are evaluating ways to improve their returns. To reach these people, start in your own social circles. Let your friends and family know that you have a business opportunity and would consider outside investment.
(2) At the Club
If you’re ready to venture a bit further, look for angels within groups of your potential customers. If you are a golf company, build relationships at the golf course. If your business is medical, look to meet doctors. I call these affiliate funding opportunities, because angels love to be affiliated with companies in the industries they know.
(3) Through your CPA
Statistically speaking, your Angel will probably live within 30 minutes of your home. So put extra effort into networking with local professionals. If you currently use a lawyer or CPA, have a discussion with them about local Angels. Even the smallest towns have Angel investors, and they tend to be well networked with business attorneys and accountants. Ask and you shall receive.
(3.5) Angel Clubs
The recent trend is for Angels to join well-organized clubs. They meet regularly and usually invest as a group (as well as individually). This makes them even easier to find – there’s an online directory of groups available at the Angel Capital Association
Remember, there are far more Angel investors than there are Venture Capitalists and banks put together. Not only are they relatively easy to find, but there are many reasons why Angels are your best source for capital.
Keep reading for more on that subject!