Best Online Resources for New Greater Des Moines (DSM) Angel Investors
When it comes to investing in startups, the concepts of investing are similar to investing in other companies. Investors need to be diligent about what is happening to the companies in their portfolios. Investors should be proactive. Many times, one can get a pulse of a startup from social media before even receiving a prospectus from a startup. Proper diligence, however, requires being exposed to the various aspects of an angel investment, a topic rarely taught during traditional degree-seeking programs. In my mind, there are three key resources for new angel investors to begin their education and further it as their portfolio size and depth increases.
Three Key Resources For New Angel Investors
- Angel Capital Association — Angel Capital Association (ACA) is a national trade group of angel investment clubs and networks, individual investors and venture capitalists. Greater Des Moines (DSM)-based Plains Angels is a member of the ACA. For an annual fee and agreement, we receive virtually unlimited access for all of our group members. A bulk of the information is in video or webinar format, the topics are highly-relevant and contextual and members can go back and view the recordings free of charge. The group also has a public policy arm. For example, when the FCC Rules came about from the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act of 2012, the ACA explored that topic in detail, shared its research with the membership and worked on viable, workable public policy and rules. This website is the resource I frequent the most as the topics that ACA is discussing are the topics that investors across the country are discussing.
- Kauffman Fellows — The Kauffman Fellows site is an excellent resource for entrepreneurs raising money and for the people investing in these entrepreneurs. The website has an online course based on Venture Deals: Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer and Venture Capitalist by Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson. Those versed in the concepts of angel capitalism should subscribe to the Kauffman Report that comes out every year, which talks about the state of the country and specifically the Midwest council. The organization has an active research arm with a lot of data, as well. The blog, The Kauffman Fellows Review, focuses quite a bit on entrepreneurship and capital-related items.
- Raising Capital Seminar — Closer to home, the Raising Capital Seminar is an event that is hosted and organized by the Greater Des Moines Partnership and active members of the angel investing community in Des Moines. Even though it was started primarily for the startup community, we have found that angel investors of various experience levels have benefited from that combined conversation over a day-long period. It is an opportunity for angel investors to meet the entrepreneurs and understand their perspective. Remember that a good investment involves understanding the party that one is working with. If an investor can understand the needs and motivations of an entrepreneur, he/she can craft a better solution. Mark your calendar – the next Raising Capital Seminar will be held on September 21, 2017.
These online resources are just a few of the ways the DSM startup community can further their education and grow their portfolio. Learn more about angel investor resources with Plains Angels.