Showing posts with label start ups. Show all posts
Showing posts with label start ups. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


Someone has rightly said “playing with money helps to grow”. This saying has actually encouraged people to invest in different ventures. The stumbling block in investment had been the risks associated with it. The volume of investments made globally in the last four years has been more than $2.27Bn till 31st March 2015 but it could have easily been twenty times of this amount. If one wants to avoid hassles in making such investments, they should follow the seven star formula of investing:
  1. KNOW YOUR INVESTMENT SEEKER: The first cardinal rule of making an investment is to know the organization looking for investment and the people behind it. The structure and brain of an organization is the first guiding principal for making an investment. No one is likely to use the hit and trial method while investing, rather an investor would be prompted by the spirits behind the organization. An encouraging factor is to identify and understand the brain behind the seeker, their entrepreneurship and the ability to grow.
  2. CONNECTING WITH YOUR INVESTMENT SEEKER: Once a general understanding about an investment has been achieved then the next goal should be to develop a connection with the seeker. After the exchange of general mails, meetings should be scheduled - telephonic or personal. A regular touch before making an investment is a must, as this would assist in getting first hand information whereby the seeker would share his project and other details. The connectivity between the investor and seeker has to be pre-established before entering into a relationship.
  3. EVALUATING THE PROJECT/INVESTMENT SEEKER: Every startup or the innovator considers one’s project as enterprising & very profitable but that requires a strong evaluation from the perspective of an investor. An investor needs to know the worth of the project viz. popularity, technical feasibility, business growth, local or global.  Similarly, an overall review of the people behind the project needs to be made which means identifying their knowledge, background as well as financial background. In case of a seeker involved in a previous project which failed, extra caution needs to be taken. On the other hand, a successful seeker would attract more and sound investors. The risk gets minimized once a decision is taken after having concluded due diligence on the project as well as on the investment seeker.
  4. DEFINING YOUR GOAL: Every investor needs to know the goal one aims by such investment. It may not always be necessary and important to see growth in revenue; rather it may be the fame & reputation of being part of a very successful project. Similarly, at other times one may not look out for immediate returns but returns over the passage of time. Once a goal has been determined then milestones need to be fixed. The goal should be understood as a period and gain of investment and not merely return of the investment. 
  5. LEGALIZING THE RELATIONSHIP: No relation co-exists for long time unless supported by a well reasoned legalized document. Investors and seekers relation does not stand long where it is based upon oral understanding or weak documents. Gone are the days when documents were created just for the sake of remembrance, today the documents are created to strengthen the relationship between people/organization. A well defined and understood agreement not only encourages people to work together but equally discourages them to fall prey of unnecessary risks. Every investor must start their relationship with the seeker depending upon documents like Letter of Intent (LOI), Founders Agreement, Confidentiality Agreement, Mutual Non-disclosure agreement, Term sheets, Shareholders agreement etc. 
  6. UNDERSTANDING THE FLOW OF RELATIONSHIP: As an investor one would need to know what information and at what level the same would be shared by the seeker to the investor. The expectation as well as the obligation between the investor and seeker needs to be defined with clear understanding for mutual benefits. The flow of relationship has to both ways and not merely one way. A standard of charter or report can be defined to encourage transparency which would strongly glue them together. The compatibility between two increases with defined flow of relationship and ideally reduces the fears of an investor and helps in the strong growth of relationship.
  7. TAKING CALL TO QUIT FROM THE PROJECT: A nomadic journey never lands a person anywhere, rather a defined strategy to achieve a destination has more probability of being successful. Once a goal has been setup then one should be clear to take calls on the exit or review the goal. In certain cases investors prefer periodic exit from the project rather than the same being dependent on financial gains. One needs to take call on the exit from a project rather than repent at the end, especially when the project does not look to be going. The investor will have a clear understanding as to their achievement in case they are open for review and exit from the project instead of bound with time limitation.