Mark's lessons on capital raising

27 April 18

 

Mark's lessons on capital raising:

  • Make sure material arrangements are supported by appropriate documentation;
  • Be flexible on how the investment might be made (equity, convertible note, joint venture, “farm in” …);
  • Have a well balanced team with relevant experience and skills related to the business;
  • Understand current business performance, profitability and customer acquisition costs;
  • Assumptions for forecasts should be well tested and be able to be supported;
  • Be realistic on valuations. Investors will only pay for “fair value”. The gap between the balance sheet and the valuation is “good will”.
  • Maintain good communications with your “followers” (potential investors) and stakeholders including your advisors. Fast growing businesses can change quickly.
  • Put capital raising plans in place early – don’t wait until you need the capital as it takes time to raise capital;
  • Answer prospective investor queries promptly and provide transparency around your operations. Investors are not only assessing the opportunity but the management’s ability to execute.
  • Make sure the company is solvent and the “burn rate” is sustainable;
  • Channels to market are critical;
  • Accounts should be up-to-date and accurate;
  • Don’t second guess who may or may not invest, contact as many potential investors as possible;
  • Balance sheets should be “clean”. Loans from related parties should converted to equity if possible.
  • Founders should not have loans to the Company and also take shares for “sweat equity” (no double dipping);
  • Take advice around the capital raising process;
  • Capital raising is a “team sport”, make sure all parties are engaged and active;
  • Corporate structures should allow investors to have direct access to the intellectual property;
  • Don’t over invest in the product, you also need to sell it;
  • Don’t be prescriptive on how the raise should be conducted – the strategy should meet the Company’s capital needs (ie. working capital or a capex milestone);
  • Don’t just back “one horse”. Curate investors or acquirers so multiple parties are pursuing the opportunity. Many deals do not complete.
  • Take the money.
  • Reputations of the parties are important.

Contact us to discuss your capital raising needs:

phone +61 7 160 2840 or email brisbane@fundingstrategies.com.au