I'm a wannabe Angel.
I don't sit on a huge pile of cash, but my intention is to help startups in whatever possible way within my capacity. I haven't made a decision yet, as this thought has recently crossed my mind after going through various forums and having read the woes of startups.
I'm myself NOT having an entrepreneurial mindset. I'm working with one of the software companies in India having more than 12 years of experience in the IT industry assuming various roles from being a programmer to a Manager.
Since past few days (yes, not even weeks yet) I have been trying to gather as much info as possible, solely from the internet, and would continue to do so for some more time. I need guidance from established Angels visiting this forum.
Does an Angel need to be Techno-savvy?
What are the challenges/pitfalls faced by Angels?
Do Angels hedge their risks in some way or the other?
Does anyone know of the 'minimum requirement' in terms of money I should be willing to put, in order to get associated with a well known syndicate of angels?
Please feel free to go beyond the above questions while you help me.
I'll add more questions here as they start bugging me.
Your two cents would be worth a million for me. Thanks in advance!
Angels provide a vital bridge between your family and friends money and VC money. A typical angel is usually an entrepreneur who made it and now wants to help others succeed (and make some money).
It helps to know the market you invest in. That does not mean you have to be tech-savy but you should know when people are lying to you. Usually, angels have a network of experts that they can tap to bridge their knowledge gap. So, build a network of those types of people.
The challenges that angels usually face is quality deal flow and how to exit. Everyone wants money. Your job as an angel is to sort out which ideas have a shot at making it. You also have to deal with the reality of the exit event, which is how you get your money back. Another downside is that the companies you invest in will ask you for more money. If you have it great. If not, you need to help them find it.
Angels hedge their bets like any other investor by placing multiple bets. That's the best way to spread the risk and ensure some return.
One other thing to keep in mind. Once you invest in a startup, assume the money is gone. Don't rely on ever getting it back. You will sleep much better at night and you will be surprised when it does make a return. Way too often, angels expect a return on their risky investments and it never happens. The lesson, only invest what you can afford to lose.
Here are few points to consider
Money, money, money