Tier two entrepreneurs are carefully screened by a panel of investors and serial entrepreneurs with expertise in the entrepreneur’s industry. If the company is compelling, a subset of panel members is identified to form a “Shadow Board” to help advise the entrepreneur on his/her fund raising strategy. The Board will chart the company’s funding course through seed and “A” round financings.
Members of this panel serve three purposes:
Access to Funding. Provide clients with greater access to a network of angel, venture and corporate investors. While at the same time screen companies and provide a higher level of venture centric feedback than is currently available.
Build Better Deals. Provide our constituents (investors, service professionals) with angel/venture quality deal flow. Giving them the opportunity to mentor, follow, and/or invest in quality deals earlier and at better valuations.
Create More Deals. Provide the Institute with additional financial resources (sponsorship and fee opportunities) and an endowment by taking equity positions to accelerate and perpetuate the Institute’s mission.
Until now,” diamonds in the rough” reached investors through WBI’s Investors Choice® programs, limited introductions, and blind perseverance. With the Venture Ready® program, the linkage between the investment community and the entrepreneur is now formalized. Companies can be quickly reviewed, vetted, coached and introduced to the investor. This is extremely important because investors don’t blindly invest into interesting ideas. They invest in credible people with BIG and credible ideas. Venture capital is raised based on references and recommendations of others, not through the “yellow pages”. With Venture Ready® the investor can now view companies from two perspectives: first as a helpful critic, second as a possible partner to build the company to successful investment.
For the vast majority of companies, getting the attention of investors is based on who can make the introduction and establish the initial point of credibility. WBI does that in spades. That is WBI’s value add.