For one reason or another, you’ve considered creating your own business using venture capital. When you don’t have enough financial resources or you don’t want to risk your own money, finding and raising venture capital can help you achieve your goals. Once you figure out where to find investors, the next step is making your business attractive to them – by that I mean, investable.
Here are some tips on raising venture capital funding.
The first step is understanding how these capitalists and investor firms think. Basically, their goal is the same as yours – to make money. The only difference is they’ve spent most of their time studying which businesses have the potential of growing in a couple of years. That is why in the past few years, investments are geared towards technology and biotechnology fields, as they have proven to be industries with highest potential.
Sometimes they operate within a certain field or geographical area, so you must know the investment firms in your local. This is where doing your research on the firms within your state as well and their investment criteria is key. Know what they want and give it to them. If your business proposal is not in line with these businesses or does not meet their investment criteria, then make sure that your proposal is impressive enough to catch their eye.
This brings us to the next step – preparation of your business proposal. Since these firms receive dozens, if not hundreds of proposals, it is important your proposal be brief and thorough (complete). The opportunity must be well defined and clearly explained. This is only possible if you did your homework properly. Know the market that you wish to penetrate as well as your competitors and their strategies.
Ask for help from experts and professionals on how to draft these proposals. While it may be an additional cost, the chances of your proposal getting approved will also greatly increase when you seek help from professionals who have experience drafting these types of proposals. Especially if you lack business expertise to begin with.
You may know your business well and have done thorough research, but you haven’t translated it into a clear, actionable proposal. Check your proposal for any errors in typo and grammar. The figures must also be accurate. Have someone review your draft before submitting it.
After you’ve submitted your proposal and caught the target firm’s attention, it is time to put your management team together. Keep in mind that with venture capital, you lose some degree of control over the company. These investment firms are also likely to provide some of its people to sit on your board or be a part of your management team. It is therefore important that your management team is strong enough to handle the pressures from the investment firm.
If you’re thinking of expanding your existing business or creating a new one, venture capital funding is a good alternative. But before deciding, understand your options. Read business books and articles on the topic. Then study your business plan and see if venture capital is a viable source of funding.
If you decide venture capital is the way to go, make sure that you take all precautionary measures and know all alternative strategies to your business plan.