7. David Smith - AXM


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7. David Smith - AXM

  1. 1. Finding the Finance Workshop - 16 May 2014 North West Fund for Digital & Creative David Smith, Investment Director
  2. 2. STRUCTURE • Introduction to the North West Fund for Digital and Creative • Overview of Venture Capital • How to approach a Venture Capitalist
  3. 3. NWF4D&C invests in digital, media and creative businesses in the North West region Example sub-sectors: • Online Publishing • Advertising and Marketing Services • Music Distribution • Video Content • Gaming • Software and IT Services • Social Media • Social Commerce • Apps Development • Consumer Data Analytics • Convergent Technologies • Hardware • Telecoms
  4. 4. We are one of the most active tech investors in the UK • To date we have invested £8.3m in 29 companies through a series of initial and follow-on investments "Of the venture capital investors making [technology] investments, the busiest have been… the North West Fund” – Financial Times Our initial investments range from £50,000 to £1.5m
  5. 5. The Team - AXM Venture Capital The Team has significant experience in investing and managing digital, media and creative investments. Investment Managers Fred Mendelsohn David Smith Joanne Evans Investment Committee John Handley Simon Levene Ian Livingstone Shawn Luetchens Rupert Wingate-Saul
  6. 6. Portfolio
  7. 7. • Provides high growth businesses with finance • In return for an equity stake VC finance Founders equity Founders equity VC equity Returns come in the long-term, usually from the sale of the company Venture Capital
  8. 8. Venture Capitalists look for… Strong management team Proposition with high growth potential Potential exit identified A business plan which meets these criteria will attract an investor’s attention
  9. 9. “It’s more than just the money…” Leverage additional finance Enabling further rounds Refining and developing the business model Business expertise Introductions Endorsement and credibility Discipline, corporate governance and process
  10. 10. Venture capitalists see a lot of companies; one extreme example…… 960 business plans Venrock
  11. 11. Venture capitalists see a lot of companies… 960 business plans 292 in person meetings David Pakman – Partner at Venrock
  12. 12. One Fortunately the North West Fund is much more active!
  13. 13. Critical to understand a VC’s thought process… • Strong management team • High growth potential • Potential exit What can you demonstrate that addresses each point?
  14. 14. What can you show to validate your plan… • Strong management team • Doesn’t necessarily mean previous experience • Must know the sector • Non-exec support can be helpful • We often provide assistance to help supplement teams
  15. 15. What can you show to validate your plan… • High growth potential • Significant market opportunity • Clear unmet need • Scalable • Clear go-to-market strategy • Differentiated from competitors
  16. 16. What can you show to validate your plan… • Potential exit • Potential acquirers and reasons for an acquisition • Capital value created independently to the founders • Continued long term growth prospects • Presenting a strategic threat to incumbents
  17. 17. Best validation is demonstrating traction… “Airbnb for dogs”
  18. 18. Best validation is demonstrating traction…
  19. 19. Best validation is demonstrating traction… “Real time crab pricing engine for amateur fishermen”
  20. 20. Best validation is demonstrating traction…
  21. 21. That last one wasn’t true…
  22. 22. Portfolio
  23. 23. The North West Fund for Digital & Creative