Clarendon Fund Managers | Angel investing about using your experience for good…
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Angel investing about using your experience for good…

Angel investing about using your experience for good…

Nice article from our very own Portfolio & Finance Manager, Gareth Herron, explaining how you could get more involved in angel investing through HBAN (Halo Business Angel Network).

If you think angel investing might be something you’d like to find out more about or get involved in, please contact Gareth Herron or any of the rest of the team.

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Anyone who has been involved in business angel investment will tell you it’s not about making a quick buck..

Don’t get me wrong, the best angel investments can offer substantial returns, and the capital that investors put in can make a massive difference to a start-up business — but there is more to it than that.

Business angel investing at its best is about using your experience to help those businesses reach their full potential. 

If you’ve spent 25 years getting experience in a sector of business, that shouldn’t be lost. As an expert in your field, you’ll have the ability to open doors, mentor new entrepreneurs and share what you’ve learnt from previous companies — the good and the bad.  

A key aspect of business angel investing is the capacity to bring their own experience and contacts to help the business grow post investment.  

The vast majority of HBAN’s more than 120-strong group of angels are people who have built successful businesses before as chief executives or executive directors and exited with not insignificant amounts of capital, some of which they now want to invest in the next generation of entrepreneurial companies. 

Since starting my role as HBAN coordinator in Northern Ireland in June, I’ve had a lot of conversations with people who are interested in becoming angel investors but need help to see how their skills as a business owner translate to an investor role.  

It’s true that investing in an entrepreneur and their company requires a different skill set from founding and growing a company. Within my role at HBAN, I aim to help to develop and train local business angels to make use of their knowledge and expertise by moving into this new dimension of business.

Even the most experienced businessperson can need guidance and resources to be able to use their experience well as an angel investor. 

As part of my role at HBAN, I take new angel investors through an induction process with the HBAN team at Clarendon Fund Managers, who oversee HBAN in Northern Ireland.

This is an opportunity to get an insight into what excites them and direct them towards deals that best fit their interests.  

Following our initial meeting, business angels are sent a welcome pack which includes some useful guides on angel investing. We also send out recordings from the most recent pitching event to new members to give them a flavour of the companies we have considered for investment. As a member network, we try to provide business angels with the resources they need to shift from successful entrepreneur to an experienced business angel investor. We provide ongoing training to our angels through regular webinars, some facilitated through HBAN Dublin, providing insight from an all-island perspective.  

HBAN business angels have access to the Delio platform, an online platform that shows deals and companies from both Northern Ireland and Ireland.

Understanding a business is only one element of business angel investment but understanding the funding landscape is also a vital component.  

Joining the HBAN member network, means that business angels have the opportunity to create and participate in syndicate rounds with likeminded co-investors.

We now see a lot more investable opportunities well suited for business angels who are working together in groups and willing to share the load of carrying out due diligence and supporting local businesses to scale.   Syndicates are also a great way to introduce first-time angels to the funding landscape and enable them to build a larger more diversified portfolio of investments. 

As Clarendon Fund Managers are also part of Co-Fund NI, we work closely with groups of more active angels and will bring them in on a number of other deals across the funding environment.  

Northern Ireland’s growing start-up scene is packed with talented and innovative companies and has the potential to provide a great rate of return. The local investment landscape has changed dramatically in the last ten years, and we now see a lot more readily investable opportunities.  

With that in mind, there has never been a better time to consider using your experience and becoming a business angel investor. Those that do can count on resources, training and mentorship that will help them be as successful as angel investors as they were in business.