You’re probably looking at that title thinking about DC Comics or something. What is angel investing? How is it different from say, venture capital investing? Here’s a quick ’30k feet’ explanation:
- Smaller investment amounts
- More active deal participation
- Direct company involvement
- Not having to answer to LP’s
So as you can guess, for those individuals that have cash and have an interest in investing; Angels have it made. The ability to pick and choose their own personal investments in a growing portfolio of companies without dealing with the democracy of Limited Partners.
In some situations, investments overlap into a specific segment of technology (search, mobile, social, etc.). In a lot of ways, various companies almost work together, or at least towards the same industry goals. This makes investing easier in terms of contacts and concepts.
Since Google, the scale of angel investing has grown because so much money has been injected into technology. Look at this to see the effect Google has had on startups. The best example of this type of investor is Ron Conway (pic above). I’ll dive a little deeper:
A billionaire, but still one the hardest workers in technology, available almost 24/7. Instead of keeping large network of contacts, he keeps a smaller, closer group; creating a very strong, effective network. In this group, Conway creates high expectations about the ability for each person to contribute.
Check out this web of inter-related investments Conway has made over the last few years. This shows what kind of deal flow this guy can create. From what I can tell that’s the whole game of angel investing. Being very active.
As one of the early investors in Google, he could be in the 10-figure area on that one deal (yes that’s billions). Since then he’s been a part of more than 10 acquisitions including Mint.com ($171M). At this point he’s simply giving back to help other startups. His favorite charity, UCSF Medical, gets most of the proceeds. As far as net worth? I don’t think I can count that high.
As you can tell, this guy has his finger on the pulse of technology. He understands where it is going. In this article from June of last year, Conway says over the next 18 months he will be investing in companies exploring “Real-Time Data”. Why do I point this out? We’ll it just so happens that I founded a company trying to streamline data into ‘real time’ for the real estate industry.
Uvestor is what we call, “Real Estate in Real Time”. Streamlining the communication of multiple parties in a real estate transaction. Giving professionals the ability to share documents and activity, including invoices and work orders. This is all deployed across the web in real time, so transactions (bills and expenses) can be centralized and organized, inevitably saving time and money.
Real Time Data…Here’s to hoping he’s right.