Have you considered business angel funding for your business?
There are over 80 different government supports available to small businesses but many of them are not well known or understood. Each week in the SFA e-zine, we will profile a different support that could improve your business, giving you information and advice.
Halo Business Angel Network (HBAN)
HBAN is an initiative that aims to increase the number of angel investors actively investing in early stage companies on the island of Ireland. HBAN supports the formation of new and existing business angel networks regionally, internationally and within industry sectors.
Business angel investors are high net worth individuals who provide finance to start-up and new companies, typically €50,000-€250,000. Much of the business angel community in Ireland is ad hoc, involving family, friends and private individuals who are not involved in any network. HBAN aims to develop the business angel model in Ireland in line with best practice and provide a forum for establishing syndicates.
Early stage businesses often struggle to find the money they need to get up and running. They don’t have reserves or retained profits as more established businesses might and they lack a track record to secure bank finance. Business angel investment is one way of closing the gap and in the US it is equal to the total level of venture capital investment.
In Ireland, business angel investment has increased in recent years, with HBAN investments totaling €13.6 million in 50 companies in 2016. This direct angel investment leveraged a further €20.5 million of public and private funds.
HBAN is a joint initiative of Enterprise Ireland and InterTradeIreland and is managed by Dublin Business Innovation Centre (BIC).
The HBAN website, www.hban.org, has information for potential investors and businesses seeking investment. Companies looking for funding should contact HBAN if they meet the following criteria:
- A product that is ready for commercialisation
- Pre-revenue is considered, however some early market traction is preferred
- A management team with relevant experience
- An identifiable market opportunity
- An internationally scalable business model
Applications can be made online and HBAN staff can work with you in advance of submitting your application. If there is sufficient interest, you will be invited to pitch at an investor syndicate meeting.
If you are interested in availing of this service, don’t forget:
- Raising finance takes time and a lot of negotiation. You should allow a year from planning to completion, although the typical time frame is three to six months.
- HBAN is primarily seeking companies in the technology, medtech, agritech or food sectors
- Investors are likely to want to join the board of directors and take an active part in the development of the business
- Investors will undertake due diligence on your company before deciding to invest
- More information is available here.
SFA Webinar - Government Supports
SFA Acting Director, Linda Barry will deliver a webinar on 26 July from 2:15pm - 2:45pm on 'The what, where and how of grants, loans, tax savings and other government supports.' Register online now for the webinar.