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Wanted: Business Angels

23 September 2022 Brief
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Given the growing number of projects and innovative companies in the aviation world that need financing to complete their development, ENAC Alumni proposes to set up an activity that would bring together innovative companies in the world of air transport with "Business Angels" from our ENAC Alumni community.   


Why a Business Angel?

As a reminder, a Business Angel is an individual who agrees to invest in an innovative company with high potential. "He/she provides financial support to the entrepreneur at a time when no one else can follow him/her".
Private investors have always existed to support projects, but the Business Angel is not an investor like the others. In practice, he will distinguish himself from other types of financial contributors, because he wishes to invest personally in the project he is going to support; money is not his only motivation.
The Business Angel is therefore a business angel whose involvement goes far beyond his financial contribution. In his desire to help the entrepreneur, the Business Angel makes available his professional skills, his contacts and his enthusiasm. It is therefore in this support to the company that the relevance of bringing together innovative air transport companies with our alumni community appears.
On the other hand, the entry in the capital of an investor from the company's field of activity is credible and generally allows to obtain other financing, especially from banks.
It is therefore in the interest of a business creator seeking funds to call on experienced members of our community.  A marketing specialist can help him to fine-tune his offer, an expert in the air transport sector can show him where to find his future clients, or even put them in touch with each other.


The role of a Business Angel

The role of a business angel in a start-up begins with a seed investment and continues over several years until the company reaches maturity.
Unsurprisingly, very strong links are forged between investors and business angels. Whether they are former company directors, senior executives or entrepreneurs, the Business Angels are all driven by the same passion for entrepreneurship. Their desire? To accompany the success of the project holder step by step. As you will have understood, a Business Angel is more than a financier, he is a true partner. Moreover, it is possible to find characteristics common to Business Angels:

    The attraction for creation and project leaders;
    The desire to experience a new entrepreneurial adventure;
    The possible motivation to participate in the development of their region;

They are often former entrepreneurs or company directors who make their skills, experience, relational network and part of their time available to support the company in which they invest.

Business angels invest during a critical phase for the company, which is still fragile. They take a financial risk by providing their own funds, but they will play a fundamental role in the consolidation of the start-up. On exit, some of the start-ups in which business angels have invested can offer a significant capital gain, but this remains a risky investment for which it is advisable to be very selective in the choice of projects and to diversify one's portfolio. A good shareholders' agreement is essential, and the exit must be prepared, in particular by establishing a relationship of trust with the entrepreneur.


What is a Business Angel looking for?

This investor, unlike others, may have several expectations, but in principle a Business Angel invests in the capital of young companies by becoming a minority shareholder. The aim is obviously to make a profitable financial investment.
Investing is therefore a process that must yield a substantial capital gain in the medium term. Consequently, a Business Angel often looks for innovative projects or projects with strong development potential in which he believes.
The main reason is the reliability of the project financed. This is why, in most cases, other financing possibilities have already been mobilised (aid, subsidies, loans, etc.), and the fact that the product/service has already met the market is a guarantee of a good investment.
As mentioned above, the involvement of a Business Angel does not stop at the financial aspects. In practice, his experience of entrepreneurial life will lead him to share his address book, to give judicious advice to favour the development of the company and thus lead it to success. He is therefore a valuable partner!

 

When to call on a Business Angel?

Although Business Angels can intervene at all stages of a company's life (creation, development or takeover), their action is mainly in the seed phase. They actively participate in the company's capital for 4 to 5 years, then exit the company hoping to realise a high capital gain.
When is an entrepreneur of particular interest to Business Angels? "When the amount sought is too small to interest venture capitalists, i.e. when the fundraising is between €100,000 and €800,000. Each Business Angel is generally able to invest between €5,000 and €100,000 (on average €15,000) per person and per project. But by calling on several Business Angels or networks such as former graduates, the entrepreneur can hope to raise up to €800,000.


Which companies are likely to be selected?

In the case of ENAC Alumni, these are innovative companies in the world of air transport in the broadest sense and which demonstrate a real potential for growth, with supporting figures. Of course, we will give priority to companies led by students or alumni of ENAC but the companies presented by ENAC Alumni to its Business Angels will not be limited to them.

 

We will therefore organise webinars in which you will be presented with innovative companies of tomorrow. You will then be asked to become a Business Angel, to invest directly in these young companies with high potential and at the same time to share your professional experience and your network of contacts to accompany them in their growth.




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