I co-founded a startup that has a product belonging in the social media space and will launch a public beta in two weeks. We are located in the Philippines but we are targeting US/UK users.
I am looking for angel investment and I believe that a US-based angel investor is exponentially better for both sides. The development and running costs are cheaper without any significant penalties in execution. Risk is reduced on both sides. The question is, Is this possible? Did this kind of arrangement happened before?
It looks like you are ready to launch and don't need angel investment right away.
Since your goal is to find an angel from Silicon Valley for instance, at some point you'll need to plan a trip here (read this for details of which meetings to attend to have a productive trip).
But before you book your plane ticket, launch your product and get some initial momentum. That's they key.
Then come to those meetings in Silicon Valley and tell everyone you meet what you have achieved. That will get you in.
PS: don't expect a check on the first visit, your goal should be to create key contacts so that by the second visit, you have a good chance of closing with an angel.
I can't speak for US investors, but many of the North European ones that I have worked with had upfront, clear limitations on which geographic areas they could work in. They typically stated legal risks, and large legal expenses when doing just one deal in a given jurisdiction as the reasons.
I suggest looking in Singapore for potential investors. Lots of international and government money there that is always on the lookout for good foreign investment, especially in developing economies. Ive linked a few entities below for a possible start:
Unluckily I do not have particular pointers, but I would encourage you to pursue further the direction you have chosen. In general, a US-based investor is more experienced. understands the execution better and has a better economic sense when compared to an Asian investor (However the variance within the US investors may be large too). Some of what I have said about Asian investors has been my personal experience.
I have a feeling that the investors in emerging economies like India and China (if there are) may be a good option too. I guess the big picture is that investors from old-rich countries may be set with old mindsets (unless they belong to a country like US that thrives on innovation).
Another thing: I hope you do not assume that you will get a funding soon after you start pitching. It may take months.
If you are serious about raising money, I think there is some advantage in starting a US corporation and then using that to raise money in the Valley. However it's not the most important step. The first step is to make a service that gains traction, has lots of users etc. At that point investors will be interested and you can overcome the hurdles of being located overseas. Trying to raise money before that point is difficult.
Basically I think it's very difficult to get a US person to invest in a foreign company unless you have proven that your business is on track to success.