Scotland

Investing In Scotland Grows In 6 Months to June 2020

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Investment by LINC (the Scottish Angel Capital Association) members increased from £7.84m (41 deals) to £15.27m (58 deals) in the first six months of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.

In addition to the £15.27m invested in the period by LINC members, their deals attracted an additional £14.60m from private co-investors, and £11m from Public co-investment funds. So a total of £40.87m into those 58 deals.

All LINC members are Business Angels – so not Venture Funds of crowed investors.

Many of these deals were of course in the pipeline before COVID issues hit, and the majority of the investments went into existing portfolio companies (typical of a mature angel market).  It may be anticipated that the second half of the year will be more challenging for companies seeking funding, especially ‘new’ companies seeking their first external Angel funding.

(data source – LINC Scotland).

Archangel invests £10.9m in Scottish Companies

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For 2018 Edinburgh-based angel group Archangel invested £10.9m of its own members’ cash in ten investment rounds , along with co-investment of £9.4m.

During the year, Archangels, founded in 1992, was also recognised as Lead Investment Syndicate of the Year
by the UK Business Angels Association and Investor of the Year at the inaugural Scottish Tech Startup Awards.

The year included two profitable exits, Oregon Timber Frame Limited – one of the UK’s largest independent timber frame house manufacturers, and ZoneFox – sold to Fortinet, which secures the largest enterprise, service provider and government organisations around the world.

Scottish Angels Hit Record High in 2017

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2017 saw the value of investment deals done by members of LINC Scotland, the National Business Angel Association, reach a new record.  The members, who mostly participate through the twenty or so structured Angel groups based in Scotland, invested £40.28m ($56.89) in 87 deals, alongside £13.5m of public funding, mostly from the Angel Co-investment funds run by the Scottish Investment Bank arm of Scottish Enterprise.

The Director of LINC David Grahame commented that  “It’s very encouraging that, even with all the financial and political uncertainty of recent years, Scotland’s Angel investors have not just maintained but increased their support for emerging high potential businesses right through the economic downturn.  In fact, these 2017 figures bring the total committed by our members since 2008 to over a quarter of a billion pounds ($355m).

LINC Scotland www.lincscot.co.uk has a membership comprising both individual Angel investors and most of the Scottish based Angel groups. Details of the members can be found  here: http://lincscot.co.uk/member-directory.

LINC itself is a not-for-profit private body and has the dual purpose of representing its members in Edinburgh, London and Brussels as well as supporting the overall development of the Business Angel marketplace in Scotland.  This work is supported by a range of private sector sponsors and public sector economic development bodies such as Scottish Enterprise and the European Regional Development Fund.

Contact: info@lincscot.co.uk   or +44 (0)141 221 3321

Angel – Sense of Humour Required

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In the book “The Archangels’ Share” the remarkable inside story of Archangels, the oldest and one of the biggest business Angel syndicates in the world (Available from Amazon – http://amzn.eu/dSd8NJC) there is a story about one of the groups founders complaining bitterly to another when his first investment, which had been described at the start as a “slam-dunk”, failed in a rather spectacular fashion within weeks. Having listened to the “incandescent” rage his fellow investor responded with “For heaven’s sake, where’s your sense of humour”!

They both must have had one, as 20 years later they are still investing.

Angel investing is significantly about money, and money is a serious thing. But Angel investing is about more than just a financial transaction, and few people who stick at Angel investing over the long term are only, or indeed primarily, focussed on financial return. Putting something back, meeting interesting people, and critically “having some fun” are usually to be found at the top of the list of motivations to be involved in this often crazy activity. Those most suited to Angel investing tend to be individuals who don’t take themselves too seriously, and who do maintain their sense of humour, while at the same time being entirely professional in their Angel activities.

These characteristics are epitomised by John Huston, who founded Ohio TechAngels in Columbus in 2004 and grew it to be one of the world’s largest Angel investor groups with more than 340 members. Internationally, John is well known as the past Chairman of both the ACA and the Angel Resource Institute (ARI) and as the recipient of the Hans Severiens Award for angel leadership. A hugely entertaining speaker, John has produced seminal works on effective Angel investing, notably in relation to post investment mentoring and the exit process. A serious investor, what comes through John’s writings is his sense of humour. Something he somehow managed to maintain despite his 30-year commercial banking career. John’s sense of humour, and a determination to tackle Angel investing professionally, but not to take it so seriously that it’s not fun anymore, has found expression in his recently published “100 Hustonisms”.  Some short sharp comments on Angel investing for those, like John and the Archangel founders, who have maintained both their sense of humour and their appetite for Angel investing.

LINC is very grateful to John for allowing us to share his humour and publish the Hustonisms, for, as John writes “In the theme park of finance, angel investing is the fun house”.

Read the Hustonisms here:

http://lincscot.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/100-Hustonisms-12-9