milestones or millstones?

When we work within our businesses on growth capital strategy we don’t advocate the popular funding principles of ‘bootstrapping’ (UK) or at the opposite end ‘get as much as you can’ (USA). Instead we advocate a milestone based strategy where the company targets a capital raise that gives it sufficient leeway to achieve a substantial, […]

milestones and cheese

I have found myself referring to milestones a lot recently. A word that resonates for me, is common parlance in investing yet like many things might not be clear to all. Milestones, for me, relate to strategy. Certain points in a business’ life when an event, or events, conspire to deliver a transformational change in […]

it’s who you are more than your money that matters

The longer I spend with young companies the more it reinforces my view that angel investing/venture capital/private equity (etc… etc…) should be much less about ‘financial products’ and much more about people based service industry with a strong financial overlay. When I originally joined the private equity industry (now left) my employer at the time […]

tactical or strategic capital?

In the marketing world a tactical campaign is one that is constructed to seize on an immediate and valuable opportunity (often offer or promotion based) to boost the P&L. Generally from a responsive budget and with short-term defined goals. A strategic campaign is one that is less focussed on short-term gain and more structured in […]

keeping control

I have blogged a few times about equity splits, pre and post money valuations and to be focussed on the end value of a stake rather than the emotional ‘percentage’ when capital raising (for example alignment of interests). However in a recent blog post (I doubt it’ll be a majority stake)  I made the point that […]

pre-money and post-money

A conversation yesterday prompted me to republish this post from March 2011: A very personal topic that’s unavoidable in every equity investment conversation is that when equity risk investment comes in, a percentage of the company must change hands (otherwise it’s not an equity investment). The investor needs the equity to drive their returns (and through […]

I really doubt it’ll be a majority stake…..

Often when meeting entrepreneurs for the first time you are faced with the inevitable question ‘how much equity will you want’? An important, emotive and understandable question even if it is challenging to answer in an initial meeting. The fear is always that you will want a majority of their business. And I agree that […]

growth vs paying shareholders – the disconnect

Bit of a dry one this, my apologies. But super important. Basically the need to look at the entirety of the investment proposition and to consider the medium term impact of investment terms rather than just looking at the pure ‘what % am I giving away’. I’m a little bit old-school when it comes to […]

how much, how often and why

There are two reasonably well rehearsed points of view that I find somewhat frustrating when it comes to advice on raising capital, firstly the ‘get as much as you can’ ethos and secondly the ‘take as little as you can’ ethos. The get as much as you can ethos is flawed in so far as […]

alignment of interests

A difficult and abstract subject to blog about, however the requirement for alignment of interests between investor and entrepreneur in growth capital situations is a firm belief of mine. This alignment is driven by the structure of investment agreed between entrepreneur and investor. Please bear with me! At it’s most basic, I am a fan […]