- Informations: Musician / Entrepreneur / Professor
- My advice / My idea:
Opportunities for funding an entrepreneurial venture in the United States really fall into a few categories:
1 - Sales
The first choice for funding a new venture is to have paying customers! Not only does this address budget issues but it also proves the validity of the venture (from a sustainable business perspective) if looking to bring in investors later.
2 - Grants
Grants are typically of smaller quantities in the United States, but there are quite a lot of them meant to support young creatives and entrepreneurs. These are typically hosted by either private foundations or corporations looking for a marketing win. These are great as they're essentially "free" money, however, they are very competitive since they're the only investment option in the US that doesn't take equity in the project.
3 - Crowdfunding
This is another great option if you're not quite ready to find individual investors to support your project. Platforms like Kickstarter or IndieGogo for rewards-based crowdfunding are quite reliable (if the campaign is properly marketed), and there are even equity-based crowdfunding options now if you are willing to part with ownership but to many small investors rather than a few big ones.
4 - Angel Investors
Angel investors are typically wealthy experts in certain areas that can provide (ideally) both a check as well as expertise and connections. Entrepreneurs will need to compute what their current valuation is to determine how much of their business they'll be parting with before deciding to accept funds.
5 - Venture Capital
VC is essentially the same deal structure as Angel Investment however the source of funds is from a larger group of people known as LP's (Limited Partners). Deal size is typically larger at VC level. Only do this if you can guarantee a path to a large exit event for investor return.
- My expertise about the subject: I've raised funds for both music and technology ventures.
- My potential limits as a mentor: Mainly familiar with the US market.
- What expertise I’d like to find among the network, to complete mine?: Opportunities internationally