Simon Willison’s Weblog

How does one actually find Angel investors, when our business/startup is taking off and we need to grow fast?

My answer to How does one actually find Angel investors, when our business/startup is taking off and we need to grow fast? on Quora

The best way to approach angels is via introductions. To get introductions, you need connections to people who are known and trusted by angels.

Getting your first introduction isn’t easy, but it’s possible. The good news is that once you have that first connection you’ll find reaching additional angels much, much easier—if your deal looks good the angels themselves will introduce you to each other.

But how do you get that first intro? First, look at your existing network and see if you know anyone who has founded a company and raised money themselves. They may be willing to introduce you to their own investors, which is a great starting point.

Next, consider networking events. If your network isn’t very strong, you need to start building relationships with people who might be impressed with your product and could potentially introduce you to investors. Events are a great place to do this.

There are also pitching events, which offer the opportunity to pitch to investors and the press en-masse. If you can’t get introductions another way these might help you get in front of people who can help connect you to the right people.

Also consider targetting individual investors. You can use tools like AngelList and Crunchbase to find investors who have put money in to companies in a similar space to yours. If you see someone who looks like an ideal match for you, find out if you have any shared connections (e.g. using LinkedIn) or even send them a highly personalized cold email.