It's not easy being a start-up entrepreneur; there are a plethora of hats to wear. It's not enough to come up with a revolutionary idea; you have to figure out a way to get the money to bring your project to life.
Finding an investor isn't easy, either. It's hard enough finding a group or individual who not only understands your product, concept, and market – but also has the money to invest and the patience to wait for years (possibly) until there's a payoff. And of course, you are competing against a huge pool of other startups chasing those same investments. The chances of finding just the right person or group at just the right time are such a long shot that it's almost miraculous when a company gets the money it needs. Maybe that's why they call the investors in these start-ups “angels!”
The truth is that there are many investors who are interested in investment opportunities in Israel. Considering the low rates of interest on savings and the poor performance of stock markets, investing in a winning start-up could be a savvy move for someone looking to make a bigger and better profit. The question is – how does one find these investors? One of the main vehicles for entrepreneurs to find investors and vice-versa is “the show,” a gathering of companies in the same industry where entrepreneurs and investors can meet and mingle. There are dozens of shows a year for every field, but getting to them entails sacrificing time, money, and effort that all entrepreneurs will tell you could be put to better use.
A new service by a company called Face-Them seeks to bridge the gap between investor and entrepreneur. Face-Them offers a free “Live Stream” website service available exclusively for the iInvestment community to meet with those businesses seeking early investment capitol. The format of the website promotes a 15 minute internet live stream audio and video presentation where businesses seeking investment funding provide an overview of their business to potential investors. This format allows the investors to ask questions of the business and if interested, schedule a private live stream interview through Face-Them, with the business to go into more detail about their organization, product, business plan, and funding requirements. The broadcast can be reviewed anytime after the presentation on both live stream and Facebook sites.
Yosefa Edman, a senior partner in the company (it has branches in the U.S., Sweden, and Israel) says that the system is designed to save both investors and entrepreneurs time and money. Most start-ups do not have access to investors abroad, and the only way to meet them is to go on expensive and time-consuming “road show,” a project that could cost upwards of $10,000, with no guarantee of results.
The online system makes it clear to both sides if there is a point in meeting further. The entrepreneur can “feel out” the investor and decide if it is worth their while in pursuing a relationship, and the investor can decide whether the project is worth their money before going through the company's business plan and committing to due diligence. Bottom line – Face-Them saves both investors and entrepreneurs time and money, and gives them a platform to meet and get to know each other – and maybe to make some mutual profits!