Are you currently in a spot where you believe the only way you can achieve your business goals is to find angel investors in Nigeria?
One of the key elements towards becoming a successful entrepreneur is to have the required capital to plan and push your business forward. Without money, there is not much you can do as you will be frustrated even before you start.
Money itself is motivation and having the right amount could help you carry on the venture without any hiccups. In this article, we have been able to highlight the best places where you can get find Angel Investors as a potential business owner.
WHO IS AN ANGEL INVESTOR?
An Angel investor is an individual, whether known or unknown to you, who invests his or her money in a startup in exchange for an equity or convertible debt.
Another way business owners could get business support is to reach out to venture capitalists. Both venture capitalists and angel investors invest money into a business. The major difference between the two is that angel investors provide his or her money while venture capital firms invest people’s money.
An entrepreneur looking for funding should select angel investors as they are more concerned about the overall performance of the business instead of being solely motivated by profits. It is easy to get support from angel investors when you are just starting whereas venture capitalists mostly invest their money in already functioning startups which means you will need more than convincing to bring them on board.
This is one of the reasons why I see angel investors as better risk-takers than venture capitalists. This may be motivated by the need to see new businesses succeed since most of them are already into one business or the other. They are happy when they see young entrepreneurs succeed apart from the likely revenue they are likely to gain.
Angel investors are everywhere and you will be surprised to know that some are even close to you. In this article, we will provide you with tips on how to find angel investors in Nigeria.
WHAT YOU NEED TO WIN OVER ANGEL INVESTORS
1. A clear business plan
Anyone who will be putting a huge amount of money into your business will want to know your business objectives, mission, vision, and how you intend to make the business succeed.
Walk it through your mind many times before designing your business plan. The more convincing and detailed your plan for the business is, the better for your business idea to get the funds it needs to kick off. Be prepared because you are going to have to answer certain questions which you are expected to answer smartly.
2. Have a prototype if possible
A prototype is an early sample of what you intend to produce and sell. If you could get a model of the proposed product idea, that would have made more sense to the investors as they get to see it first hand instead of imagining how it will look like.
Presenting a prototype to your prospective investors makes it easier for you to win them over. However, be ready to make the prototype as perfect as it can be as the first impression always goes a long way and you can’t afford to ruin the moment.
3. Targeted markets
How do you plan to sell it and where are your targeted markets? These are among the likely questions you are going to provide answers to. Angel investors also want to make money and they will mostly be interested in where you are planning to sell or if there are markets for it.
A product generating great sales in Imo may not be the same in Kaduna, therefore you will need to make proper findings before selling yourself. Investors are not dunce, they know the markets and they are expecting you to provide a sound response.
4. Future endeavours
As an entrepreneur looking to find angel investors, you also need to have a clearly defined plan for the future. An angel investor is not only concerned about the present but also the future, you will probably need to discuss the viability of raising additional financing if it turns out to be a big venture and how you intend to pursue them.
Should you borrow from banks or contact venture capitalists who will most likely be ready to invest since they prefer established business. Are there plans to change the business location to a bigger one as we have seen with some companies?
What about how the proceeds of the business will be used? Do you pay equity owners dividends or reinvest? They will want you to be clear from the onset to avoid issues in the future.
BEFORE USING ANGEL INVESTORS, HOW DO I PROTECT MYSELF?
If you do not have startup capital, pitching your idea to another could be a huge risk to take. We have seen and heard about people whose ideas were stolen by another because they could not start the venture due to limited resources.
If you are about to begin a business where it involves creating a new product, you are in a big dilemma as there may be sensitive things that you will need to reveal to your potential angel investors.
As someone who has the most to lose, you can enter a non-disclosure agreement with your prospective investors and also bring in a legal practitioner to help you with the needed advice. An experienced lawyer will help you find ways to protect your startup ideas; if stolen, what are the possible compensations you could get?
Another thing you should take into consideration is the term and conditions. Now that you are about to invite potential investors who will own equity, you should have a laid down rule. You need to be clear right from the onset of the mode of operation including the profit sharing basis.
LIST OF ANGEL INVESTORS IN NIGERIA: HOW TO FIND THEM?
Family and friends
Angel investors are not that very hard to find, they are everywhere. Family and friends can also become your investors and they are most likely to trust you with their money more than third parties.
The major disadvantage in using people closer to you is that there is a possibility of missing business with a relationship which is never good for the business. As an entrepreneur, you need to be the driver and also take charge but you might meet with some restrictions if your friends and families are your angel investors.
If you are working in an organisation and have been able to gain the trust of your co-workers, you could talk with them about the possibility of growing with you. Your colleagues might have some idle funds in the bank that could make collateral for bank loans.
Your colleagues could be looking for ways to make money and this is an opportunity for them to have shared ownership. No one wants to work forever for another, the idea could be too promising for them to reject.
Entrepreneurs are almost perfect angel investors and you should not find it difficult to get one. These people are easier to dialogue with as they have already passed through such a phase and know everything as regards starting a business.
Having them with you also means you are not alone and you could even get free support and advice which could help the business grow.
Being a consistent and known member of a church or mosque could help you meet some great people who you should share what you intend to build. While in your place of worship, you could talk to people who you believe are financially buoyant, who knows you could hit the goldmine.
Take your time to know them first and also find ways to make them see you as a responsible and determined individual. In such gatherings, people are more likely to partner with you when you are well known to them. If you have problems approaching them, you could talk with your pastor and imam as they are closer to the members.
A social organization is made up of a group of people who come together for the same common goal. It could be clubs, political parties, religious organizations, etc. These are places in Nigeria where you could get potential investors who are likely to help you kick off your start.
However, you may not get exactly what you are looking for but never underrate the power of connection. Influential members in your league could also connect you to angel investors. When joining a club or any association, you should always consider the profiles of the registered members.
Seminars, business meetings, and workshops
This approach has been labeled one of the best ways to quickly spot potential angel investors. Whether seminars, workshops, or business meetings, people making time to be there must be people who are intrigued about the possibility of learning about current trends and business opportunities.
The major reason why people start looking for investment opportunities is that they may no longer find their jobs interesting or they feel their time at their working place is almost over. At the meetings, you are going to find a lot of people in such a situation.
Having such a great gathering is a perfect opportunity to win over people who will be interested in growing with you. These groups could also have ideas or advice that may eventually help you towards the realisation of the project.
Another way you can get angel investors is to place an ad in your local newspaper or have it placed anywhere people can easily see it.
Ads posting sites like Jiji and Olist NG could also allow you to place your ads without having to part with any money. Besides, it is very easy to use and effective as well. When using ads to find an investor, ensure you place your contact details. If you are a user of WhatsApp, the conversation could take place here first before you meet with them.
Know what to divulge through the phone or any other medium being used. People might try to steal your ideas using fake profiles. It is on you to be smart about it.
Intermediaries like Brokers and venture capitalists know lots of people sitting on unused funds and interested in putting their money into work. We also have companies in Nigeria whose mission is to find angel investors for entrepreneurs who are in dire need of finance.
You can always arrange a meeting with a broker or Forex Investment Companies in your location. When you use an intermediary to find investors, you are likely to be charged a service fee. Not the best option, but if you want to find angel investors quickly, they are arguably the best.
Social media and forums
If you can leverage the opportunities provided by the emergency of the internet, you will notice that things become easy as you can have all your answers right from wherever you are.
Finding angel investors in Nigeria is now easier and almost free of charge, thanks to social media, and forums.
Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and nairaland are among the most visited interactive sites, and you have great chances to meet someone here soon or later.
If you are using social media platforms, you can create a good impression by exhibiting the creative and innovative side of yourself. Talk about startup ideas, let people warm up to the feeling that you are a very interesting person.
Nairaland being the most visited forum site in Nigeria also gives such an opportunity. Share your dreams and aspirations and you will be amazed at the tractions your post gets. However, be courteous and avoid the usual reply people give when commentators give negative criticisms. You never know if your reply will not go well with potential investors.
Angel networks are available in Nigeria and you are likely to find them in industrialized states like Lagos and Abuja. Angel network is an entity set up to connect Business Angels to Entrepreneurs who need funding.
Business angels who put money into businesses will be interested in the returns his or her investment could bring. Business owners can also benefit from their experience and use it to their advantage. They are also most likely to help you survive and grow using the resources they have at their disposal as most of them are well connected.