Scottish-born David came to talk to us about Angel HQ, Wellington-based incorporated investment society (club) affiliated with the Angel Association of New Zealand.
 
Scottish-born David came to talk to us about Angel HQ, Wellington-based incorporated investment society (club) affiliated with the Angel Association of New Zealand.

The Angel Association is an organisation that aims to increase the quantity, quality and success of angel investments in New Zealand and in doing so create a greater pool of capital for innovative start-up companies.
 
The Angel Association was established in 2008 to bring together the business angel networks and early stage funds to work towards an agreed national vision and to deliver the activities required to achieve this.
 
The primary objectives of the Angel association are to:
 
  • Promote the growth of angel investment in New Zealand, including encouraging and educating entrepreneurs, new angel investors and angel groups.
     
  • Ensure the ongoing success of the industry through developing industry strategy, encouraging collaboration between members and providing education for those involved.
 
To date there are 600 registered angel investors in New Zealand – plus crowd investors, crowd funders and individuals.
 
Investments cover a broad range of sectors with software and social services the largest. The total investment for all sectors is $437,568,893. Investment in the Software and social services sector is  $173,757,504.
 
When ‘start-ups’ seek investment from the Angel Association, they are at a point where they have validation. It is not seed funding but still in the early stage where there is proof of concept.
 
Angel HQ Wellington (80 members) has a portfolio of $14m invested across 52 companies. The expectation is that it will recover the investment eventually and to date it has had one positive exit –  ‘Green Button’. (An ‘exit’ is when all investments are returned.)
 
There are an average of six investors per deal, and the average investment is between $300-$750K. Dave confessed that although some of the pre-company evaluations are a bit ‘pie in the sky’ they do base their decisions on sound income projections. There is a high rate of syndication (75%) between all the New Zealand Angel Associations. They don’t take deals off each other and work together to make things happen.
 
Why become an Angel? David said that Angel investors are not in it to make money – they want to give back and want to help young businesses grow. The most successful are usually led by one person with the vision and drive and one person taking the risk. Angel investors are people investing in people.
 
Ros Fogel
CLUB REPORTER
 
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