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Investment Forum London

London #InvestmentForum – Top 8 investor questions and how to respond

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London. 18th March. EBAN and Metavallon in collaboration with AngelNews brought 11 selected EU startups to exclusively pitch in front of top notch investors from the UK during The Great British Private Investor Summit!

This, in fact, was the 1st from a series of actions to be organized by the partners of Future Internet Business, a pillar of the FIWARE Acceleration program for promising startups. Here is a brief account on this exclusive event coupled with 8 vital insights on what investors expect startups to tell them straight away.

We have discusssed before about Future Internet Business (FI Business) and how Metavallon is an integral part this impactful pan-European superproject. In brief, FI Business is a pillar for the FIWARE Acceleration Programme with 16 EU accelerators empowering European entrepreneurs to build valuable high-growth businesses. To that, Metavallon has teamed up with EBAN, Media Deals. BWCON, Eurescom, and Uusi Tehdas to fuel these 16 accelerators with catalyzing services and opportunities, in an effort to make the FIWARE ecosystem as successful as possible.

This effort translates into a series of impactful actions and initiatives such as bootcamps, webinars, targeted events, workshops, one-to-one consulting, investment forums, and e-pitches. The inaugural function took place on March 18th in London as the 1st FIWARE Startup Investment Forum. EBAN and Metavallon from the FI Business team worked alongside AngelNews to bring 11 of their leading European start-up companies to The Great British Private Investor Summit 2015. What a unique opportunity for promising young companies to meet with experienced investors in Great Britain it was!

Startups hand-picked for success

With demanding investors comes an equally demanding selection process. EBAN and Metavallon went through numerous applications of startups excited about the opportunity. Successful teams exhibited 6 core elements: a working product or service, a thought-through business model, a promising revenue structure along with some initial revenue in most cases, a focused investment plan and offering to investors, a talented team with know-how in their respective industries, and last but not least vision of what they wish to create.

The select group of startups that travelled to London to pitch to investors comprised the following teams:

  • Peoplegraph and usheru, from the European Pioneers accelerator
  • Sparkholder and Ecogriddy, from the Finodex accelerator
  • Health & Management srl, from the FICHe accelerator
  • Rounders entertainment Oy and Foneclay Italia srl, from the CreatiFI accelerator
  • Sparkworks, Memorystoria and Mileyenda, from the FI-ADOPT accelerator through Europe Unlimited, the supporting platform for innovative entrepreneurship
  • Trip Dashboard, from the SOUL-FI accelerator

These promising young companies were also guided on what to prepare, how to deliver their pitches for best results, who they were going to engage with, and what all this could mean to them. Pitching and networking is an art to be conquered after all.

An exclusive opportunity for the entrepreneurs

For the teams it all started at 8:30am, when they were invited to set up and get briefed. The event started at 9am and the investor-ready crowd stayed well throughout the day until 6pm. Already by 10am it was time for the pitches of our Investment Forum, during which the selected teams had 2 minutes to present their businesses in front of 4 investors:

  • Charles Breese
  • Grant Calton
  • Martin Fiennes
  • Helene Panzarino

These promising young companies were also guided on what to prepare, how to deliver their pitches for best results, who they were going to engage with, and what all this could mean to them. Pitching and networking is an art to be conquered after all.

Still, amazing networking opportunities were available for the 11 startups all throughout the day. The Summit 2015 was a unique gathering of business angels and certified investors from the across UK and abroad – and the FI Business teams were the only ones fundraising that were given access to this event!

What are investors looking for?

It is not everyday that founders have access to feedback from people with such experience.

For startups, it is invaluable to look into what investors asked the entrepreneurs. Preparing an answer is one reason, yet the most important thing is to decipher what investors are really looking to find out and what makes for a good response.

So here are the 8 most frequently asked questions – and, most importantly, what investors are really seeking to discover through these:

  1. What are your strategic partners?

In other words, your are a small and young company, what is your go-to-market leverage that will for e.g. provide you with access to your target market effectively and rapidly?

  1. What are your revenue projections?

In other words, you must have run some numbers because we are discussing business, how substantial and realistic they are?

  1. What are you currently working on and what are your goals?

In other words, how focused is what you are working on at the moment, and are you doing too many things? Investors are looking for laser focused operations, they understand that a small and young company can only do a single targeted thing well and successfully.

  1. Who are your competitors?

In other words, you must know your market very well and how your customers have been fulfilling the need you are addressing so far, competition validates that there is a market, so the real question to answer here is: how are you different?

  1. How much does it cost for the customer?

In other words, what is it exactly what you are offering, your value proposition, does it add up financially and is it competitive?

  1. What verticals are you working on?

In other words, your market may be huge and have a great potential, yet you need to start from somewhere specific, somewhere you can easily reach, so have you segmented your market effectively, where have you started from and why?

  1. How are you organized in terms of development?

In other words, do you have a talented and dedicated team, and how are you organized in order to you achieve your goals?

  1. What is your unfair advantage?

In other words, investors are looking to identify whether you possess something that is very difficult to be replicated or copied, either intellectual property or a world-class dedicated team, that will increase your probability for success (and decrease investment risk).

More opportunities from the FI Business – Coming up next…

FI Business team will now focus on the upcoming and highly-expected 1st FIWARE Startup Boot Camp in Berlin, May 1-3. This event will take 3 days and consist of a parallel program for early and later stage startups. The aim for early stage startups is to intensively work on their business model, exchange with other European startups, develop a financing strategy and learn about team management.

In fact, our very own Team and Experts, including Leda Karabela, Dimitris Axiotis, and Alexandra Choli, have been invited to guide founders and deliver workshops. A series of innovative startups from all participating accelerators have already secured their tickets.

The FIWARE boot camp is the kick-off event for the Berlin Web Week and all startups have the chance to visit many other events on all sorts of future internet topics.

Berlin Web Week is just one of them!

Exciting work ahead for Metavallon

After London, Metavallon will be in Berlin as well, as one of the organizers of this unique Bootcamp! And this is right after the call for The Accelerator, our very own flagship program, will have come to an end (April 30).

Busy days ahead of us and we just love them!

 

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