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How to Find Your VC

Published: 6/6/2011 9:41:54 AM


Small businesses are slowly but surely reviving the economy from from it’s economic doldrums. Subsequently, many investors have been doing their part to help the small business succeed. And the good news is, it doesn’t take much to get venture capitalists to pitch in. Here are some tips and business solutions to help you get your venture fix.

Finding your VC:

Guy Kawasaki, co-founder of Alltop.com, founding partner at Garage Technology Ventures, and former chief evangelist of Apple, suggests finding a venture capitalist by getting introductions from people with connections such as partner-level lawyers, professors of engineering, or founders of companies who are already in a venture capitalist’s portfolio.

You don’t always have to know someone who knows someone to get in touch with a venture capitalist. President Obama’s “Startup America” initiative has made it possible to find financing through the U.S. Small Business Administration in a program called the SBIC, or Small Business Investment Company.

Stand out of the Crowd:

Of course, in order to get some money, you will need to prove that your company is worthy of capital, a high potential growth business. Paul Lee of Lightbank, a chicago-based firm focused on early-stage technology companies, explains what he looks for in a prospective investment: “Right off the bat, a passionate and intelligent management team.” “Also,” he continues, “is the sector they are attacking really a large market? At times, business owners’ original theses are flat-out wrong.”

You can also show the potential growth of your company by showcasing your success now. Leaving a voicemail or sending an email that explains your current growth will flaunt your ability to make money with very little financing (i.e. resourcefulness).

Find the right VC for your company:

Lastly, make sure that you are contacting the right venture capitalist for your company. Different VCs specialize in different industries. Additionally, VCs differ in their scope (national vs local). Get online and research the VC firm before you attempt to do business with them. If you keep these tips in mind, you’ll surely grab a venture capitalist in no time. Happy hunting.

James Kim is a writer for Choosewhat.com. ChooseWhat is a company that provides product reviews and test data for business services and products.  Their goal is to help small companies make informed buying decisions on business solutions that help their business.

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