Venture Giants was responsible for reviewing thousands of investment proposals whilst it was in operation in the UK. We were asked over and over on how to create the perfect investment proposal and this article addresses that question.
We saw seemingly weak business ideas receive a lot of investor investor interest only because the proposal had been well written and well thought out!
We believe it is possible for all entrepreneurs to write really great investment proposals (no matter the experience level) – and this article hopes to explore some of the crucial elements that you should think about whilst crafting your investment pitch.
We have also enclosed a sample investment summary below.
Our aim with Venture Giants is to create more and more resources of useful, actionable articles that can assist entrepreneurs become ‘investment-ready’.
How to write the perfect investment proposal, explained by Venture Giants
The main purpose of this article is on how to write the perfect investment opportunity, that can be used on any investment network.
Six points on the perfect investment pitch:
- There is capital out there, so what is in it for an Angel Investor?
Your investment proposal must sound like it can generate profits by creating a convincing proposition with clear guidelines in terms of ROI (return on investment). Regardless of what you are seeing in the press and in the media about the recession and shrinking GDP – there will always be capital out there for businesses. So your investment proposal must always emphasise this important point.
- Keep it simple
We have seen it too many times. An entrepreneur submits a really good opportunity, but it turns out to be too darn complicated! Yes agreed, it is important to show a potential angel investor that you know your stuff – but keep your investment proposal simple and concise.
When investors look through your investment summary, they are going to scan through it. Using jargon like CMS, CRM etc. will inevitably confuse and put-off most investors and move them away from your value proposition!Ignore this advice at your own peril – use simple words like software – not a CRM solution! Online media/advertising instead of PPC campaigns etc.
- What sector are you in?
Another major point that I have seen entrepreneurs overlook is what industry sector their business is in! Let me give you an example:
‘What industry sector is Google in?’
Think about it for one second…..
Immediate responses will inevitably always be: Computer technology, Software, AI, Internet .. ?
It’s Online Advertising!
Why? Because 96% of Google’s revenue comes from advertising! So your investment summary proposal would nominate the industry sector as Online Advertising.
You do not want to lose potential investors because you chose Computers or Software instead of Advertising or Media!
- What is the Capital needed for?
Don’t be shy! Talk about your funding requirements with no shame!
How do you wish to use the money that you raise? What will you purchase – and why is it needed? These are all very valuable questions, and they must be addressed in your investment proposal.
- Your career background?
Include your background/experience information ONLY if it is relevant to your business or investment proposal.
Do you have complementary skills that will assist you in running your business and turning it into a success? If so, talk about this. If not, does your management team have the necessary skills? Talk about this! If not, then skip it for now.
Does your business have global appeal? Make sure you include this if it does! Facebook, Google are scaleable globally.
If you would like further in-depth analysis into the terms listed above, we have written entire articles about each aspect of your investment proposal. All can be located in Venture Giants’ articles and resources section.
How to write the perfect Investment Summary
An investment proposal template by a company called “Media Deals” is attached below. This proposal received a lot of attention.
Please review it – and though it may not be related to your industry and/or business, this sample investment proposal will at the very least give you an idea about the quality of investment proposals that we send out to our registered investors.
Investment Title Guidelines:
The investment title of your proposal must explain what your business does. Create a compelling title that will position your business to be understood instantly in the investor’s mind before they have even read your investment proposal!
Consider also that the subject line of the email that is sent out to angel investors that you approach. A catchy and snappy title will ensure that an investor will open his email and read your entire investment proposal.
Sample investment Title: (25 Characters)
Media Trading Platform
2. Investment Summary Guidelines:
This is the public part of your proposal and must compel an investor to want to read the ENTIRE investment description.
Ideas to mention here are:
- Why your investment opportunity is attractive!
- How much capital is needed, and how it will be used.
- What will be the return on investment (ROI) for the investor and when will they see this return?
Ideally you should aim to write this paragraph AFTER you have created and drafted your entire investment pitch below, so as to ensure that you do not miss out any important facts!
Sample Investment Summary: (500 Characters)
We have created a state of the art UK media trading system that offers print-media-buyers and ad-sellers (newspapers, magazines and publications) the opportunity of accessing real-time print ad inventory, which agencies and/or advertisers can either buy or bid for. We are seeking a £50k angel investment to be used for Working Capital and Online Marketing. Based on our projections, Angel Investors will see a ROI in year 2 of 34%.
3. Investment Description Guidelines:
Your Investment description will have to answer the question:
“What’s in it for the Angel Investor!” – I have seen it to many times! Entrepreneurs talk and talk about their product and business…. And then nothing more!
Strike a balance. Talk about your business, how you will make money, why you are seeking investment and how an investor will make a return!
This is your investment pitch – and don’t forget to add some industry statistics! A simple search on Google will reveal some interesting facts that you can include in your investment proposal.
Your investment description is essentially your pitch or elevator pitch.
Address key issues like:
What makes your investment proposal an attractive investment opportunity?
How much money is needed, and how will it be used?
What will be the return on investment (ROI) for an investor and when will they see this return?
This can be effective as a teaser to attract the initial attention of an angel investor, particularly when using email or an online angel investment matching service.
- Sample Investment Description:
Our online media trading system has been in development for the past 12 months. It offers print-media-buyers and sellers the opportunity of accessing real-time print ad inventory, which agencies and/or advertisers can either buy or bid for.
Publishers always have excess adverts to sell at discounted rates before their 7PM print deadline (the ‘deadline discount’ game) and there is great demand for this ad-space as it is usually heavily discounted. But in the UK, there is no way of accessing these heavily discounted ads. The only way is to create relationships with magazines, and/or, call each publication and ask them for a ‘deadline discount’.
Our online eBay type bidding system aims to solve this problem by enabling magazines, newspapers and other publications to advertise their ‘deadline discount adverts’ to people wishing to purchase these adverts. All discounted advertising space is automatically categorised by magazine type, ad-size and cost.
Purchasing an ad on our online trading system involves a user simply ‘adding the advert’ to their shopping basket and paying for it via a credit or debit card.
We expect to generate revenues from these purchases of between 6% and 8% on all transactions. It is FREE for media publishers (magazines and newspapers) to upload their advert availability.
This trading platform can be scaled globally, and my longer term plans is to licence the platform to individuals on a country to country basis. Apart from the upfront and ongoing revenues, further commercialisation could come from INTERCONNECTING the databases together from each country. So, a UK based customer who was looking to buy advertising space could also browse advertising opportunities in India and if that customer from the UK system subsequently chose to purchase an advert in a different country, we could automate and revenue share between licensees. The commercialisation possibilities are endless.
It is often stated that ‘offline media (magazines and newspapers) is in serious trouble’. However all the real-data points to the contrary. According to the media handbook 2007, it is estimated that the value of consumer magazines is £7.2bn and the business media industry – including magazines is valued at £18bn to £20bn.
Magazines themselves – the printed ones – have continued to flourish in the last decade since the launch of the Internet. At least one new title is launched every day of the year and has resulted in rising total volumes of sales and of consumer expenditure on printed products.
The Advertising Association (AA) predicts a 15.6 per cent increase in consumer magazine ad-spend over the next 12 years, taking overall advertising investment in the industry from £750m in 2006 to £889m in 2018, which is a view shared by the UK’s leading advertiser, Procter & Gamble, who have increased their investment in print by 10.7 per cent over the last two years.
We believe that our online service could do amazingly well in the fight against online advertising as advertisers identify how effectively magazine advertising can build customer loyalty. Our online service has now been created and is all set to launch.
I have had 10 years experience in the publishing business and I have worked with Random House and learned their marketing methods. I have seen this gap in the market and I believe an online media trading system is much needed. Using my skills and experience in this space, I believe that I can turn this business into a great success and commercialise this media trading platform to generate sustainable turnover and profit.
This media trading system is a win/win business solution for print media. Advertisers will get discounted ad-space and publishers of magazine will get to move inventory in a much faster and streamlined way.
Please contact me to discuss this investment proposal further.
Always try to end with something that the investor should do – a call to action.
So use expressions like:
- We have a full business plan available on request. We are very passionate about our business and we would invite any interested angel investors to contact us to discuss this investment proposal further.
- Always make it easy for angel investors to understand your business and investment proposal. Talk about your background and business, and then talk about your product! Yes you have the scientific knowledge on the chemical composition of Biodiesel, but an angel won’t so keep it simple!
Thank you for taking the time to read this brief outline, and I hope that it helps you to create a compelling proposal to attract investment – whether it be through Venture Giants, or otherwise!
How to present a powerful business presentation to Investors
Angel Investor Report published a how-to guide on pitching to investors. They suggested that startups need to:
- Tell a story
- Keep it simple
- Speak naturally
- Know their stuff
- And use printed large format posters in an investor meeting
There is a simple reason behind this. If you are pitching at an investment event, too many entrepreneurs are relying on digital media. When the pitch is finished, the power point presentation disappears for the next person.
Freestanding printed posters can be used in your individual pitch meetings or in the background. The posters will certainly leave a favourable impression to an investor over projectors, flat screen plasma and laptops.
Reload Internet in Paddington, London offers same day poster printing that can be used for investment proposal pitching. They can also advise startups on the best way to use posters for their investment pitch. Details and the link are listed above.
As an entrepreneur you must learn to demonstrate that you can make an Angel Investor, money!
Convince investors who read your investment proposal that your business opportunity is sustainable and that you are the person for the job!
Your investment summary must stay focused on how you are going to translate investment into profit.