Entrepreneurs and startups face a great deal of difficulty when seeking capital. Often time’s investors won’t be willing to take risks to fund your business plan. What can one do? Well, if you can’t change the investor, you change your approach. There are many classic problems why startups can fail, and if you’re seeking capital you need to convince investors you won’t fall into these problems.
Luckily for you, aspiring Frederick-area entrepreneur, you can get some of that responsibility off your shoulders. Strategic Capital Partners is a Frederick based company providing services to help connect emerging technology companies with the capital needed to fund their growth. Their objective is to get your idea and proposal fully realized and ready to pitch to investors.
Strategic Capital Partners was formed out of the need in Frederick for a company that facilitates angel investment. Angel investors are individuals prepared to invest their own money in business start-ups that go beyond the typical monetary incentive. The principle of angel investment lies in the investors desire to stimulate the local economy or help aspiring entrepreneurs turn their dreams into reality. Angel investors are willing to invest at unusually early stages in a business’s lifespan, most often times businesses that aren’t quite ready for venture capital. Many angel investors are or were formally entrepreneurs themselves, therefore they understand the difficulties entrepreneurs face at early stages in launching their businesses. Connecting with angel investors would benefit any startup or entrepreneur. Strategic Capital Partners can connect Frederick startups and entrepreneurs to angel investors in the neighboring metropolitan areas of Washington DC and Baltimore.
A brief description of Strategic Capital Partners and their mission from their website: "Crowdfunding, angel investors, pitches, capitalization, private equity, business plans, venture capital…these are all terms savvy entrepreneurs and wise investors quickly become familiar with. Strategic Capital Partners, LLC helps entrepreneurs and investors navigate the capitalization waters. Using our proprietary PrimeMover Venture Fair™, we connect the need for capital with the desire for great return on investment."
Mark Greathouse, the President and Managing Partner of Strategic Capital Partners, describes their services as a type of business accelerator. Strategic Capital Partners prepares your company to seek capital and communicate effectively with investors. Strategic Capital Partners also takes it a step further and actually matches their clients to private equity investor venues where they can appeal to prospective investors with their business models.
They employ a four-part approach to help your business gain the capital it needs. This process can take an unrefined business plan and turn it into a fully realized plan that can be communicated effectively to investors. First, they screen the business plan through a scoring process that determines how ready your business is for the pitch to investors. This will spotlight your business plan’s strengths, as well its weaknesses. Next, a vetting process that addresses those areas in your plan that need corrective action. This ensures that your business model presents a legitimate investment opportunity for investors .Then they prepare a pitch that will optimally prepare your company for consideration from investors and finally, set you up with investors to pitch your idea. Strategic Capital Partners will be with you from start to finish.
Dealing with investors is not simple, when an investor’s money is on the line they want to know they’re making the right choice in funding a business’s project. Strategic Capital Partners makes sure that when you get up to make your pitch to investors you aren’t wasting your time or investor’s.
“Because a lot of the angel investors are entrepreneurs and have built successful businesses they’re asking tough questions,” said Brett Hess, partner and co-founder of Strategic Capital Partners. “What we’re doing is helping companies get prepared so they can answer these tough questions.”
Questions like: “Who is the competition?”, “What demographics do you intend to market to?”, “How are you going to package the product?” are the kind that investors will need to know and questions Strategic Capital Partners can help you answer.
Answering these questions is vital for anyone seeking capital, this type of consulting needs to be addressed to get a great idea off the ground. Greathouse says it’s not as easy as just having money either. “The number one reason early stage business fail is management, it’s not lack of money or a poor product. “We’re aiming to put a story or a structure around that business to enhance the probability of it being successful”
Strategic Capital Partners are here to help startups and entrepreneurs be successful, and as they’ll tell you, it’s not all about the money. It’s about helping the local economy and entrepreneurs, as well as helping local ideas flourish and turn into successful products and businesses.
“To me, what we do and what we’re promoting is the antidote to everything that could go wrong with our nation. It’s couched in small business and helping new technologies grow,” Greathouse said.
In addition to all these services that they provide, they are also working to help form an angel investment group in Frederick. Hess says there’s a lot of interest in the Frederick area and a number of angel investors already interested in the idea. Frederick is a place of interest for an investment group because it’s seen as an intersection of ideas between Washington DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and West Virginia. So it seems there’s only a matter of time before the dream turns to reality. Angel investors look to support the innovation and creativity of local ideas. Look out for a group of angel investors popping up in the area and if you’ve already got great ideas and want to have them ready to pitch to investors give the guys at Strategic Capital Partners a call.