Like everyone, we’ve been listening to a lot of zoom calls organised by HBAN, EBAN ( and their members), Greenbackers, Seedrs, Ignite, Expotential, Angels Den and our Raise sessions to name a few.
These are the key themes and messages we’re hearing regarding fund raising:
- Some of the best returning investments in angel portfolios were made in 2002 and 2009. Angels and family offices are however reluctant to commit to new deals until there is a degree of stability in the wider economy, particularly commercial property and public markets.
- Deals are however still being made by funds which had completed funding rounds and have investment mandates to keep – there is a message that good business will continue to find investment.
- A starting point for what a good businesses is defined as, in the most basic terms, are those with product, month on month growth of customers/ users and runway.
- New deals between people with no previous relationships or very strong introductions are unlikely to be completed before lockdown is eased. But relationships can be started remotely.
- If you have a live round – keep the business going, keep a positive narrative, even if this includes lay offs or changes of strategy. If you can do well now, imagine how well you’ll do when lockdown eases.
- A real sense of investing local is coming through – A patriotic sense of support home ecosystems and startups.
- Unfortunately we’re not hearing enough ambition around travel or entertainment related startups. The investment community is very focused on now – elearning and edtech, homeworking solutions, sanitation solutions etc. We agree these are going to be growth areas, but covid is creating new problems that will need innovative solutions.
- Renewed openness – doors are open more than ever on company collaboration, investment discussions and advice, funds open office hours etc all increasing.
- Don’t waste too much time looking at government support – inappropriate for most startups, long debt legacy threats and massively oversubscribed.
- Keep a look out for Innovate UK, EU and Intertrade Ireland funding calls. Lots of interesting opportunities for startups to solve real problems!
- Sadly people will lose their jobs and contractors will not have contracts renewed. But, their skills will be needed elsewhere and this could be the time to realise ideas. This is why Raise has launched a summer intake. So, get in touch to discuss a startup idea or the skills you have to offer.