IRVINE, Calif., September 15, 2009 — A unique new program designed to provide seed funding, services, knowledge, education, execution and strategic planning to entrepreneurs with game-changing company ideas in the very early stages of development has been announced by the Orange County Chapter of Tech Coast Angels (TCA), the nation’s largest angel investment network. Called OC SeedTrack, the program is now accepting applications online at www.seedtrack.org.
The O.C. SeedTrack Program is a true departure from other early-stage programs in that it goes beyond the “bootcamp” training or acceleration models that have traditionally been used to jumpstart very small companies. O.C. SeedTrack members literally work side-by-side with their entrepreneurs, providing seed funding, strategic planning and the execution of many day-to-day functions of operation to allow the entrepreneurs to concentrate on realization of their vision. This hands-on participation prepares the entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into successful businesses and positions them to secure further angel or VC investment if and when needed.
According to John Murphy, a member of the executive committee of TCA and chairman of SeedTrack, “We’re often approached by entrepreneurs with great ideas and preliminary planning, but they’re simply too early-stage to be funded by TCA or venture capitalists. The goal of SeedTrack is to provide these new companies with the expertise and help they need to turn their big ideas into potentially viable businesses.”
Qualifications for SeedTrack companies include:
- tGame-changing ideas for big and meaningful problems
- tA founding team with brains, passion and motivation with the ability to adapt and evolve on a dime
- t“Skin in the game” — a personal investment and fund-raising of at least $50,000
- tA reasonable expectation that the company will be prepared to seek TCA and/or venture funding after a seed investment of no more than $100,000
- tPrimary markets include, but are not limited to, media, technology, entertainment, software and Web services
Murphy added, “Applicants should do their homework. Very early-stage companies are high risk, so the entrepreneur must have all the qualifications in place to make a TCA member believe in the new company enough to invest their money, and particularly, their time.”
To apply to become a SeedTrack candidate, entrepreneurs download a short application and executive summary form online. Likely candidates are selected by SeedTrack members and those companies are invited to give an informal presentation to a small group. Companies may then have the opportunity to present to a larger TCA group at a regularly scheduled SeedTrack meeting.
About Tech Coast Angels
Tech Coast Angels, https://www.techcoastangels.com, is the largest angel investor group in the United States. Its members provide funding and guidance to more early-stage, high-growth companies in Southern California than any other investment group. TCA members invest in companies in a wide range of industries, including the life sciences, biotech, IT, services, retail, Internet, financial, software, media, consumer products and tech startups. TCA members give companies more than just capital; they also provide counsel, mentoring and access to an extensive network of potential investors, customers, strategic partners and management talent. TCA has more than 250 members, including its venture capital affiliates, in five networks in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Westlake/Santa Barbara and the Inland Empire. More information on investment with Tech Coast Angels can be found at https://www.techcoastangels.com or at twitter.com/techcoastangels.