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This podcast selection is taken from a series of Business Hub radio shows broadcast on Star FM between February 2011 and October 2014 with advice from basic book-keeping through to crowd funding, directors loans, cashflow and a whole lot more!

There's something for everyone so do feel free to download and share - it might just be the golden nugget of information you need for your business to succeed!Listen at Star 107.9 FM

Listen to previous shows here.

Business Trouble - your choices

Business Angels

The Business Hub Show - 8 July 2012

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There are many alternatives available to traditional bank funding, but most of these are little understood by business owners. Traditionally business owners tend to only look towards their bank for funding (besides perhaps their own resources and friends and family), and often no further.

So, in the face of all the press about the banks not lending and smaller businesses not being able to grow, we have been covering over the last few weeks some of the alternative ways you can fund your business.

The aim in this series of Insights is to look at some of the alternatives that are available, how they work and if they might be right for you. What better way to do that than by getting the experts in each week to talk about one particular area. So far we have covered Crowd Funding, Foundation East and Finance East, Spot Factoring, full Factoring and Discounting.

In the sixth discussion in the series Garry Mumford is joined by Bob Westrip, a former senior banker and a leading business finance expert who used to run a Business Angels network in East Anglia known as Equity Link.

You can listen to the full interview by following the links and instructions above, and the following are some notes from Bob about Business Angels:

Bob says;

“There is a lot of talk about alternative sources of funding, one of which involves Business Angels.

So what are they?

  • They tend to be High Net Worth individuals, often who have been successful in business and who have sold their business to retire but then they want something to do. And the something to do could be you and your business, although not full time.
  • They are investors, i.e. they will own shares in your business and there will be a shareholders agreement which means that it is no longer your toy to do with as you please but you will need to talk to them about the business. Invariably they will sit on your Board but on a non-exec basis.
  • They will have contacts many of which may be useful to you.
  • They do this to make money in an area which will be high risk so your business needs to be able to show that it can make a serious return. Typically they will be looking at a 10-30 times return. This sounds a lot but they need high returns to off-set those where they will lose or only breakeven. Timescales quoted will be 3-5 years but it is not unusual to see 7 years plus before the return is achieved. This in itself may result in a conflict in that the best returns will come from a sale of the business which you may not want so be aware from day 1 and if that is not for you then probably neither are Business Angels.

What do they look for?

  • In very simple terms it is about Team, Product and Market.
  • They back people so you need to have, and be, the right people. This works both ways, you need to get on with them too.
  • You need to have done your market research such that you can demonstrate that this will make money for everyone.
  • Ideally the product should solve a problem as that way more people will want it.
  • IPR can be important, as can its protection.
  • They will look for a good, or innovative, business model.
  • You need a Business Plan but with a difference. Many angels will read no more than an Executive Summary and some no more than a couple of paragraphs of that so you need to get it, and a presentation, right.
  •  

So where do you find them?

  • Understandably they don’t broadcast their existence as individuals as they would be more inundated than they already are with plans.
  • Networking is probably your best approach, meeting people who know people, who know people….
  • Look at British Business Angels Association www.bbaa.org.uk but be careful as some very good groups are not members.”

You can contact Bob on 07799 881577 and link with him at http://www.linkedin.com/pub/bob-westrip/2/409/9a9

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