Our Resource Page is a work in progress! Scroll down to see all the resources available to you in the following order:
- Angel Investing
- Venture Capital Investing
- Crowdfunding Resources
- Accelerators and Business Training Programs
- Entrepreneurship Groups/Entrepreneurship Ecosystem
- Other Resources
- Financial Documents and Templates
NEXT WAVE IMPACT: (www.nextwaveimpact.com) Next Wave Ventures is working to increase diversity in angel investing and high growth entrepreneurship through an innovative learning-by-doing model led by an experienced investment committee of twelve women from across the country. Our new impact fund is made up of 99 investors and will build a portfolio of investments in early stage impact companies, diversified across industry and geography, over a four year investment period. We will make 6-8 investments in each of the first two years and then do some selected follow-on investments in that portfolio. We are excited about this model and the amazing investors that are part of our fund. Together we are creating the next wave of educated and trained angel investors with a focus on social impact and financial returns.
PIPELINE ANGELS (www.pipelinefellowship.com).
Pipeline Angels hosts an angel investing bootcamp for women, working to increase diversity in the U.S. angel investing community and create capital for women social entrepreneurs. The three main components of the program are education, mentoring, and practice. Since its April 2011 launch, Pipeline Fellowship’s angel investing bootcamp has trained over eighty women, who have committed more than US$400K in investment, and has expanded from New York City to Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. The program is six months long and requires two full days per month for six months.
ASTIA ANGELS (http://astia.org/astia-angels/)
In 2013, Astia (highlighted in Chapter 6) launched Astia Angels, a global network of female and male angel investors that invests in growth-oriented women-owned firms that participate in the Astia program. These investors are actively involved in Astia’s screening and development programs and enjoy several important advantages as Astia Angels. First, they get early exposure to a cohort high growth firms that have been through a screening, coaching, and mentoring process thus ensuring high quality deal flow. Second, they become engaged in post-investment activities and programs designed to help their portfolio companies succeed. Finally, since Astia now operates in 32 countries, they have opportunities to participate in events, programs, and investments that are sourced globally as well as in the United States.
GOLDEN SEEDS (www.goldenseeds.com)
Golden Seeds was founded by Stephanie Newby after a long and successful Wall Street career. Her primary goal was to raise substantial capital for women entrepreneurs, who were, at the time, receiving less than 5% of venture capital investment dollars. She also wanted to empower both women and men to become active venture investors, by providing a venue where they could learn and work together on their investments. Golden Seeds’ first investments occurred in 2005. Since their founding, they have evaluated over 2000 companies, invested more than $60 million in more than 60 companies, attracted over 275 members, managed three venture funds, and expanded nationwide. They offer a training program for potential new angel investors. Angel Investing 101: An Introduction to Angel Investing and Angel Investing 201: Cap Tables and Term Sheets are open to non-members and Angel Investing 301: Leading a Deal and Angel Investing 401: Boards and Exits are only open to members.
37 ANGELS (http://37angels.com)
37 Angels gets their name from the fact that 13% of angel investors are currently women and they want that number to be 50%. 37 Angels activates the untapped capital and experience women can bring to investing in male and female-led ventures by sourcing high potential deals and coordinating due diligence for members to invest in deals between $50K and $150K. They also offer a unique training program to educate novice angels in the fundamentals of investing in young companies. The first part of the training consists of an intense training bootcamp with 8-10 other women. In the bootcamp you learn how to source, select, diligence, value and invest in early stage start-ups through workshops, hands-on application, and case studies. Then you apply what’s learned to a real investment. 37 Angels looks at more than 2,000 companies a year and curates the best companies to share with their network at their pitch forums that take place 5 times a year. You also get assigned an experienced investor as a mentor, network with other investors at start-up events curated by the 37 Angels team.
Angel Capital Association (ACA) (http://www.angelcapitalassociation.org)
The Angel Capital Association is the leading professional and trade association supporting the success of angel investors in high-growth, early-stage ventures. ACA provides professional development, industry voice, public policy advocacy and an array of benefits and resources to its membership of more than 200 angel groups and platforms and more than 12,000 individual accredited investors. The ACA website provides a listing of and links to angel investor groups and networks by geographic region at http://www.angelcapitalassociation.org/directory/
Angel Resource Institute (http://www.angelresource.org/)
Founded in 2006, ARI is an innovative nonprofit that focuses on delivering education on proven best practices in angel investing to both entrepreneurs and investor, as well as delivering the most robust data trends in angel investing. The ARI Resource Center creates and acquires research, templates, investment experiences, and best practices for posting and use by angels, entrepreneurs, researchers, and the startup support community. You can use the Resource Center to discover new and useful information on angel investing trends, industry issues, and tools to help the efficiency and success of the investment and post-investment processes for early stage investors and entrepreneurs.
Women Focused: Venture Capital Funds with either women partners OR a track record of investing in women
- Women’s Venture Capital Fund — Small fund focused on west-coast digital media and sustainability companies led by women — http://www.womensvcfund.com/
- Illuminate Ventures — Founded by Springboard alumna Cindy Padnos — http://www.illuminate.com/
- Aspect Ventures — Founded by Theresia Gouw and Jennifer Fonstad — http://aspectventures.com/
- Cowboy Ventures — Founded by Aileen Lee — http://cowboy.vc/
- Forerunner Ventures — Founded by Kristen Green — http://forerunnerventures.com/
- Starvest Partners — Founded by Jeanne Sullivan and Deborah Farrington— http://www.starvestpartners.com/
- Canaan Partners — Recognized for investing in women — http://www.canaan.com/
- Scale Ventures — Recognized for the number of women partners — http://www.scalevp.com/
- .406 Ventures—Co-founder Maria Cirino was one of our case studies for this book—http://www.406ventures.com
- Springboard Fund — Founded by Kay Koplovitz, Whitney Johnson, and Amy Wildstein to invest in women-led high growth businesses, starting with Springboard alumnae.
- Rivet Ventures—Founded by Shadi Mehraein, Rebeca Hwang, and Christina A. Brodbeck. http://www.rivetventures.com/
- Merian Ventures is a US and UK venture-investment firm based in San Francisco. Their focus on “female entrepreneurs is more than a social statement. It is a clear objective to find, fund and profit from the rise in women-led innovation that has been largely overlooked by the investment community.” http://merianventures.com
Online sources of information for women seeking angel or VC funding:
Venture Valkyrie provides articles and blogs on a range of topics related to entrepreneurship and the acquisition of capital. Valkyrie was a Marvel Comics Superhero known for super-human strength, stamina, and other warrior traits.
Global InvestHer (http://www.globalinvesther.com)
Global InvestHer is an online platform that provides information on the funding journey. Currently, they focus on women entrepreneurs in North America and Europe but plan to expand to Latin America. Their funding focus is on women entrepreneurs from all industry sectors who are seeking seed capital up to Series A funding.
National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) (www.nvca.org)
As the voice of the U.S. venture capital community, the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) empowers its members and the entrepreneurs they fund by advocating for policies that encourage innovation and reward long-term investment. As the venture community’s preeminent trade association, NVCA serves as the definitive resource for venture capital data and unites nearly 400 members through a full range of professional services.
Kauffman Fellows (http://kauffmanfellows.org/)
The Kauffman Fellowship is a highly sought-after two-year program dedicated exclusively to the world of innovation investing. While working full-time at an investment organization (including venture, angel, accelerators, policy, corporate, and impact), Fellows receive a structured curriculum with an individual development plan, executive coaching, facilitated mentoring, and peer learning and networking – all with a focus on giving back and on one’s responsibility as an emerging leader in the industry.
Focused on Women:
Moola Hoop (Moola-hoop.com)
MoolaHoop is a rewards-based crowdfunding platform created by women to help women leverage the “power of the crowd” to grow their businesses. MoolaHoop enables female entrepreneurs, business owners and managers to garner financial support for their projects by reaching out to their customers, offering Rewards in the form of special pricing on their products and services and unique experiences.
Plum Alley (PlumAlley.co)
Plum Alley crowdfunding is a way for women to raise money in large or small amounts to fund a specific project, product, or company. No ownership equity is given to the funder, but rather, the funder is given rewards, recognition or products. Project creators have up to 60 days to raise funds.
Portfolia is an equity crowdfunding site that is creating a social network of engaged investors around entrepreneurial ventures. Portfolia’s digital platform empowers individuals and affinity groups to discover and invest in private entrepreneurial companies in their areas of expertise and interest.
Accelerators and Business Training Programs
Focused on Women:
Prosper Women Entrepreneur accelerator. St. Louis based accelerator.
Springboard Enterprises: http://www.springboardenterprises.com. National organization that provides coaching, mentoring, and contacts with Angel and VC investors.
Astia: http://www.astia.org. International organization that provides coaching, mentoring, and contacts with Angel and VC investors.
Wild Accelerator: New female-focused accelerator in Louisville, Kentucky
Women’s Presidents Organization (www.womenspresidentsorg.com)
The WPO is a non-profit membership organization for women presidents of multimillion-dollar companies. Members of the WPO take part in professionally-facilitated peer advisory groups in order to bring the ‘genius out of the group’ and accelerate the growth of their businesses. (See Chapteer 10).
Ellevate is a global professional women’s network based on the premise that women are still an under-tapped resource in the business world and in society at large – and that it’s time to change that. Ellevate’s founders and members believe that networking and lifelong learning are keys to business success. Further, they believe that by providing these capabilities, by working with companies and investors to help them see the opportunity, and by truly investing in women, Ellevate can be an active and positive part of that change.
National Women’s Business Organization (NAWBO) (www.nawbo.org)
The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) works to advance women entrepreneurs in the economic, social and political spheres of power worldwide by:
1) Strengthening the wealth creating capacity of its members and promoting economic development within the entrepreneurial community
2) Creating innovative and effective change in the business culture
3) Building strategic alliances, coalitions and affiliations
4) Transforming public policy and influencing opinion makers
National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) (www.nwbc.gov)
The National Women’s Business Council (NWBC), established in 1988, is a non-partisan federal advisory council created to serve as an independent source of advice and counsel to the President, Congress, and the U.S. Small Business Administration on economic issues of importance to women business owners. The Council is the government’s only independent voice for women entrepreneurs. Members are prominent women business owners and leaders of women’s business organizations. NWBC is composed of 15 members who are appointed to three-year terms.
Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (www.wbenc.org)
The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), founded in 1997, is the largest third-party certifier of businesses owned, controlled, and operated by women in the United States. WBENC, a national 501(c)(3) non-profit, partners with 14 Regional Partner Organizations to provide certification to women-owned businesses throughout the country. WBENC is also one of the nation’s leading advocates of women-owned businesses as suppliers to America’s corporations.
MergeLane: http://www.mergelane.com. Based in Boulder, Colorado, MergeLane promotes “exceptional women leaders and the companies they run” through a combination of training, mentoring, and contacts with potential investors.
National Center for Women & Information Technology (www.ncwit.org)
The National Center for Women & Information Technology is a non-profit community of more than 600 prominent corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and non-profits working to increase women’s participation in technology and computing. NCWIT helps organizations recruit, retain, and advance women from K-12 and higher education through industry and entrepreneurial careers.
Women’s Business Centers (https://www.sba.gov)
Women’s Business Centers (WBCs) are a national network of roughly 100 educational centers located throughout the United States. The Centers are designed to assist women in starting and growing small business and provides entrepreneurs with comprehensive training and counseling on a variety of topics in several languages. The U.S. Small Business Administration oversees the WBC network.
WEConnect International (http://weconnectinternational.org)
WEConnect’s mission is to “help women-owned businesses succeed in global value chains.” WEConnect identifies, educates, registers and certifies women’s business enterprises based outside of the United States and then connects them with multinational corporate buyers
WOMEN FIRST ENTERPRISE (http://www.angelresource.org/en/Blog/2014/June/ARI-Launches-Women-First-Enterprise.aspx)
The Angel Resource Institute’s Women First Enterprise (ARI’s WFE) caters to women in the early-stage space by providing the appropriate training and exposure to finance and business realities. By addressing the specific pain points women face in the startup community, ARI’s WFE will lead the female-driven movement by educating and mentoring women as they seek success in the competitive entrepreneurial industry. The WFE programs consist of lectures, panels, and interactive exercises with the audience as well as a question-and-answer period.
Isabella Capital Fund: http://www.fundisabella.com. Contributes intellectual and financial capital to early stage, women-led businesses.
Seraph Capital Forum: http://www.seraphcapital.com. Seattle angel investor network that matches investors with women entrepreneurs.
Women’s Technology Network: http://www.witi.com. Provides matchmaking service for technology-based women entrepreneurs and angel investors in San Francisco.
Women Impacting Public Policy (www.wipp.org)
Women Impacting Public Policy, Inc. (WIPP) is a national nonpartisan public policy organization that advocates for and on behalf of women and minorities in business in the legislative processes of our nation thereby creating economic opportunities and building bridges and alliances with other small business organizations.
Catalytic Women (http://catalyticwomen.wpengine.com)
Catalytic Women provides education, tools, and training to donors, investors and advisors who want to align their money with their values. Their focus is on social impact investing, gender lens opportunities, and strategic giving.
Lean in (http://leanin.org/education/)
The book Lean In is focused on encouraging women to pursue their ambitions, and changing the conversation from what we can’t do to what we can do. Consistent with that focus, LeanIn.Org is an online community committed to offering women the ongoing inspiration and support to help them achieve their goals.
1 Million Cups (http://www.1millioncups.com/)
1 Million Cups (1MC) is a simple way to engage entrepreneurs in communities around the world. Each week, the 1MC program offers two local entrepreneurs an opportunity to present their startups to a diverse audience of mentors, advisors, and entrepreneurs. Presenters prepare a 6 minute educational presentation and engage in 20 minutes of feedback and questioning after they present. Entrepreneurs gain insight into possible ways they can improve their businesses, gather real-time feedback, and connect with a community that cares about their progress.
Startup Grind (www.startupgrind.com)
A global startup community designed to educate, inspire and connect entrepreneurs: 100 cities, 42 countries, 75,000 entrepreneurs. Members have opportunities to interact through monthly events and an annual conference.
UpGlobal’s mission is to improve the global human condition by amplifying the efforts of startup community leaders and their ability to create and sustain flourishing entrepreneurial communities around the world. They offer startup weekends around the world, including women’s editions that are focused specifically on women. UpGlobal also has a startup Next program that is a pre-accelerator type of program.
Kauffman Foundation (www.kauffman.org)
Established in the mid-1960s by the late entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Marion Kauffman, the Kauffman Foundation is based in Kansas City, Mo., and is among the largest private foundations in the United States with an asset base of approximately $2 billion. Focused on education and entrepreneurship, the Kauffman Foundation’s vision is to foster a society of economically independent individuals who are engaged citizens in their communities.
Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) (www.aspeninstitute.org)
The Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE) is a global network of organizations dedicated to propelling entrepreneurship in emerging markets. ANDE members provide critical financial, educational, and business support services to small and growing businesses (SGBs) based on the conviction that SGBs will create jobs, stimulate long-term economic growth, and produce environmental and social benefits. ANDE is part of the Aspen Institute, an educational and policy studies organization.
Endeavor’s mission is to lead the global movement to catalyze long-term economic growth by selecting, mentoring, and accelerating the best High-Impact Entrepreneurs around the world. Endeavor helps entrepreneurs overcome barriers to growth by providing the key ingredients to success: mentorship; networks; strategic advice; talent; skills; access to smart capital; and inspiration.
Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program (www.sbir.gov)
The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program is a highly competitive program that encourages domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) that has the potential for commercialization. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR enables small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. By including qualified small businesses in the nation’s R&D arena, high-tech innovation is stimulated and the United States gains entrepreneurial spirit as it meets its specific research and development needs. (See Chapter 7)
Google for Entrepreneurs (www.googleforentrepreneurs.org)
Google for Entrepreneurs partners with startup communities and builds Campuses where entrepreneurs can learn, connect, and create companies that will change the world. Since 2011, Google for Entrepreneurs has launched Campuses and formed partnerships that support entrepreneurs across 125 countries.
Investment Documents and Templates
There are many freely available open sourced model seed financing documents on the web. As an example, the Techstars Accelerator website (http://www.techstars.com/docs/) provides a variety of documents including a term sheet that describes the basic characteristics of the investment. The term sheet lays out the proposed capitalization, i.e. the number and type of shares for each shareholder and their relative ownership percentages, post-financing. It also provides a description of the liquidation preference, mechanics of conversion, how the board of directors will be determined, protective provisions, and other rights and agreements.
Here are some other links to financial document resources:
Standard Forms of Documents:
- Series A Term Sheet
- Series A Preferred Stock Purchase Agreement
- Investor Rights Agreement
- Co-Sale Agreement
- Voting Agreement
- Series A Restated Certificate of Incorporation
Common M&A and Sale Documents:
- ABA Form of Model Purchase Agreement
- Model Letter of Intent
- Term Sheet Stock for Stock Reverse Triangular Merger
These following resources are other standard forms of documents that are popular today.
Series Seed (http://www.seriesseed.com)