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Business angels (BAs) are wealthy individuals who invest in high-growth business in return for equity. Some BAs invest on their own, whereas others do so as part of a network, syndicate or investment club. In addition to money, BAs often make their own skills, experience and contacts available to the company.

BAs typically invest in businesses with:

  • an investment need of between 10,000 and 250,000 - most initial investments are less than 75,000

  • the potential for high return - BAs are not averse to high risk

  • good early stage development or expansion

  • a presence in a particular sector

    The advantage of using a BA is that they often make an investment decision quickly, without complex assessments. However, you will still need to draw up a professional and tailored business plan.

    Most BAs can bring valuable first-hand experience of either working in a small business or running their own business venture. They're also likely to have local knowledge, as they tend to focus their investments within a small geographical area.

    Some BAs may be eligible to have their investment funds matched by the government under its Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) scheme. ECFs targeted at SMEs are under development and will only win government approval if they clearly show how they are targeting SMEs. In effect, ECFs are commercial funds, investing a combination of private and public money against a share of equity in small high-growth businesses seeking up to 2 million of equity finance.

    The disadvantage of BAs is that they don't make investments very regularly and may not be actively looking for an opportunity, so they may be difficult to find. While you may decide to approach an agency to help you with this, business angels will place a lot of emphasis on your relationship and how well you can work together directly. Tracking down the right investor may take longer than expected and can typically take several months.

    Yusuf Cicek Business Consultancy will direct you to local and appropriate BA networks and provide guidance with preparing and presenting your business proposal.

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