Bottom Line: I hear more optimism from UK Startups than I do from the British Media today.
Polaroid, the international consumer electronics company that recently hired Lady Gaga to turbo charge their marketing campaign has approached Venture Giants, an established angel investors network to assist them raise an eight figure investment to further develop and launch Polaroid products onto the global arena and take Polaroid to next level to compete with other mass market products that include HP, Canon and Sony.
Polaroid is one of the world's most famous brands and it’s new range of Zero Ink technology are capable of producing photographic quality prints on plain paper without the need of ink cartridges or ribbons which makes the technology truly disruptive to the consumer printer market that has always required replacement of its ink cartridges. Though the amount sought was far above the capital most Angel Investors and private investors would invest in individually, Venture Giants’s company Founder, Rishi Anand stated he was confident that he could secure interested parties from his private network of Angel Investors, private investors and Venture Capitalists that has taken him over three years to build. Investors from the Venture Giants network include private individuals from the Sunday Times Richlist, one of the original founders of Skype, the former Director of Goldman Sachs and PE’s with over £350m of assets under management.
Since Venture Giants was launched in the third quarter of 2008, the online Angel Investors network has gone from strength to strength and has featured over 1000 Investment proposals from UK businesses that are seeking to get in touch with these high calibre investors and more and more technology projects that have real growth potential are approaching Venture Giants in spite of what the current GDP figures the UK may suggest.
‘Technology companies are growing; we see it with British companies throughout, Arm holdings, Sage, and Autonomy are prime examples of muscular companies in the UK that are exploding in growth, but this is also being reflected with start-up technology companies that have serious growth prospects. I hear more optimism from tech start-ups on the UK economy then I do from the media.’ Company director, Rishi Anand recently stated, and so he should as Venture Giants currently boasts a total pool of combined investment capital available to just over £700m from their registered Investors and Venture Capitalists that are actively looking to invest in pre-revenue seed concepts, early stage start-ups, established businesses and successful UK entrepreneurs and Venture Giants has proven to be the ideal meeting ground for both parties.
According to Barclays Wealth, there are now 619,000 Millionaires currently residing in the UK (1st Quarter 2011) and according to some estimations only 5% of those Millionaires would class themselves as Business Angel Investors. These high net worth individuals have become increasingly more private and as a result of this it has made it increasingly difficult for entrepreneurs to locate these individuals for the funding of their small businesses and Start-ups. Venture Giants however has been uniquely positioned since 2008 to attract these business investors and has seen its registered investor capital pool explode from £60m to £700m in less than three years.
In the words of the company founder, 'Venture Giants is not trying to be the next Linkedin nor are we seeking to replace them in anyway. What we are specifically seeking to do is to be the first choice for start-ups and entrepreneurs that are serious about getting their investment proposal sent out to investors and angel investors that would not have been accessible to them through their friends and family and we intend to do this in a low cost, streamlined fashion that is disruptive to the rest of the industry. ‘
It is not that difficult to create a disruptive service in the angel investment industry as rival companies have been known to charge entrepreneurs seeking investment for their business start-ups up to £1000 upfront with no guarantees on actually finding investment; a hefty commission on any money they do raise (upto 15% of the total investment raised) and perhaps most shocking of all; a percentage chargeable if the entrepreneur was to ever sell his/her business in the future - ‘UK Entrepreneurs Beware - this is a tax on innovation’
Venture Giants however decided to take a 360 degree approach on this charging method and employed a pay-on-performance business model which means that an entrepreneur pays a one-off investment proposal listing fee ONLY if an interested party (or multiple parties) confirms his/hers interest in an entrepreneurs funding proposal through Venture Giants. To find this investor interest, Venture Giants reviews all investment proposals submitted to them and offers help and guidance on how an entrepreneur should better position their investment proposal to attract investment and also on what parts of the investment pitch that may cause a red flag to a potential investor.
‘This is a full time job as every day as we can receive up to 15 investment proposals a day and we will not approve all of them. We are committed to offering this advice free of charge for as long as we can and only when an investment proposal meets our standards will we agree to promote it.’
The promotion includes sending the investment proposal out to investors that are interested in investing in the region, sector and capital amount and this can include a send out to over 500 active UK based investors as well as further promotion over a period of six months.
Most remarkable of all is that Venture Giants does not take a commission on any money raised by using their service and this has allowed Venture Giants to position themselves in the market as a filtered volume based deal flow service.
Is it working, and does it work?
Those close to Venture Giants believe that it does. Venture Giants has served over 4000 entrepreneurs so far, and received over 2500 investor applications to use the service. They currently have an investor decline rate of 3 to 1 and by maintaining this high decline rate most of the investment deals that Venture Giants sends out to registered investors will get a 70% readership.
‘Our approach works and our investors trust us, and we know this because we are being approached daily by serious business investors that have been traditionally very hard to locate and they are willing to provide us with more and more information on exactly the types of investment deals that they are looking to invest into’
A full list of Venture Giants registered investors and Venture Capitalists can be seen by clicking on the link.
Featured investment proposals available to angel investors to invest into can be reviewed by clicking on the link.
Venture Giants does not fall within FSA regulations as it is not a commission collecting service, nor do they provide any type of advice or recommendations on any of the entrepreneur proposals that are listed on their website.
Each investor is required to attest to being a self accredited 'sophisticated investor' which furthers places the responsibility on the investor to understand the risks associated with typical early-stage high risk investments.
Venture Giants Enterprises Ltd.
'Making Entrepreneurs & Investors, rich'
Venture Capital. Venture Giants is a premier UK business Angel investment network and small to mid sized business networking portal that matches active business angel investors with entrepreneurs' seeking investment capital and business funding.
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