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The instinct of the average person when we are seeing so much global change is to hunker down, but angels are not average people.
With every paradigm shift in technology, waves of innovation follow as companies improve and then reimagine processes. Today we are in the early stages of the global artificial intelligence (AI) revolution. Machine learning algorithms, whose results improve with experience, enable us to find patterns in large data sets and make predictions more effectively — about people, equipment, systems and processes. (For an accessible introduction to AI, read our Primer.) But what are the dynamics of AI entrepreneurship in the UK?
Below, we share six powerful dynamics we see that are shaping the UK AI market— from changing activity levels and areas of focus, to trends in monetisation and the size and staging of investment.
When you’re just starting out, being an entrepreneur can be lonely. The very fact that your job is the business that you have crafted and are passionate about means that you can never quite stop working. The enormous time demands that a business can have when you’re first getting it going can mean that you start to feel isolated. And friends and family may not appreciate the strength of your passion for your start-up – when you’re not an entrepreneur yourself, there’s only so far you can understand the experiences of someone who is.
It can be tempting to adopt a Luddite view of crowdfunding websites. “They can simply upload a flurry of presentations and see what sticks.” Yet these platforms have evolved into some of the most effective online matchmakers. 40% of Seedrs and 50% of Crowdcube startups reach their funding goal, while their German peers even score success rates of 90%+ (eg. Seedmatch and Companisto). What then is their winning formula?
On the 17th January, Prime Minister Theresa May outlined 12 objectives sought from a proposed “hard” Brexit. The point that really caught my attention, and that of Britain’s science and tech community was point 10 - keep the UK the best place for science and innovation.
Dominic Keen, CEO of High Growth Robotics, asks if this is the year that investment in the robotics sector will reach new heights.
Brigitte Baumann is the Founder and CEO of Go Beyond Early Stage Investing (www.go-beyond.biz), a FinTech company transforming angel investing into a new scalable asset class. In 2016, she was listed in Europe’s TOP 50 most influential women in the startup and venture capital space and Top Women in FinTech. Brigitte has 20+ years experience in bringing new technologies to market in the US and Europe.
Brexit is on its way and “hard” rather than “soft” Brexit seems to be the direction of travel. There are arguments in favour of this approach. One big change, as long as we have time to prepare, is not necessarily a bad thing.
That's it, I know what I want to invest in this year...
With Christmas soon to be upon us we thought we would give you some ideas to share with your loved ones who are stuck as to what present to give you!
Many of us will I think put 2016 to bed with a sigh of relief. Disaster has not struck and for many in our world, despite the political shenanigans, it has in fact turned out to be pretty successful.
John Regan is a serial entrepreneur who has built three businesses from start up to trade sale.
In 2008 John turned his hand to Angel Investing. Learn the secrets of his success in this month's Anatomy of an Angel.
Dr. Krebbers suggests that when choosing an investment partner you would do well to move out of your comfort zone. Read more of his blogs at www.drkrebbers.com.
The political uncertainty which is dominating the newspapers is dreadfully distracting, but for angel investors and their friends there has been plenty of other news this month which is essential to absorb if you are going to have a successful winter season. Generally the news is good...
The latest set of EIS and SEIS statistics announce good news, but the devil is in the detail....
John Caines is a director of Angels4Angels and a serial Angel Investor whose aim is to enable businesses and shareholders to achieve their goals following his own successful entrepreneurial career.
He founded a software business which he grew from start-up into a profitable £40 million turnover group over a decade before his successful exit in 2001 via an MBI and subsequent AIM flotation.
As Chairman, John has significantly influenced the success and very positive stakeholder returns in each of his appointments to date. As an Investor John has backed some 30 early stage businesses. He also co-manages the Angels4Angels investment syndicate.
He is the author of several books including “The Effective Entrepreneur” and is Visiting Professor, Bristol Business School 2010-13. John was awarded an OBE in January 2009 for ‘Services to entrepreneurship and businesses’.
Robo-investment businesses are on the rise. It’s a trend not lost on venture capitalists and individual investors looking to back the next big start-up success. Dr Richard Theo, CEO and Co-founder of Wealthify explores the opportunities on offer to invest in and back a robo business and the factors to consider to help potential investors pick a winner.
David Barrie, Founder & CEO of Wild Blue Cohort, an angel investment network in West London.
I would like to make the case that more entrepreneurs, VCs and, indeed, angels should be invited to lget their elbows out and lead trade negotiations now that the timetable for leaving the EU is now in place.
Forecasting the future is fun but we try to base our predictions on reality! Here are the 10 new trends in angel investment
Grant Calton is a serial angel investor and a parnter at Ironbridge Capital Partners.
He has spent much of his career in the music and media industries as an entrepreneur and investor.
After a stint as a singer, he crossed over to the business of music and after establishing himself in the talent representation business, he moved to Australia where he spent 15 years as founder and CEO of a music rights and distribution business. Following its sale, he launched the global music TV network, The Box in Australasia, which he operated until its sale to MTV in 1999.
Following a year in the US, he returned to Europe where has founded a number of companies in property investment, e-commerce and film distribution.
They range from corporates to advisory firms to venture capital fund managers to individuals. Thanks to the success of our activities we now have lots of them! Therefore we are looking for hire someone who can help us to make sure that they have the best experience possible when working with us.
Who are the movers and shakers who are making life infinitely better for angels? In our view it is these people!
What were you doing back in 2002? I as running an angel club and getting to know angels who have since become life-long friends. Amongst those I met were Stephen Bullock and the Blakey brothers who in turn were busy investing in the early noughties generation of aspirational entrepreneurs.
Stephen Bullock: “My anatomy - the head of an angel and the heart and soul of an entrepreneur.”
Stephen is a successful entrepreneur and serial Tech Angel Investor with a portfolio of over 30 investments focused on Digital Media, Adtech, Cloud SaaS and B2B service companies.
His portfolio includes rapidly growing and emerging sector leaders such as MirriAd (digital native advertising), Audiense (social marketing intelligence and audience insights), SalesGossip (Digital Community and marketing channel for retailers) Brandwatch (social media monitoring),and NowWeComply (smart automation for Compliance). Recent successful exits include ByBox (tech supply chain and logistics)sold to UK PE in deal valuing the company at £105M, where Stephen was Chairman from seed investment stage to exit.
Stephen takes an active Non-Exec Board role and consults to a wide range of portfolio companies and is recent past President of the London Business School Enterprise 100 Investment Club.
It’s a quiet time for the investment market in August, but here are five things to consider doing around your angel investments this month
All investors want to be in on the next big thing and without a doubt there will be many an angel looking on with admiration and a bit of envy as the success seen by Octopus Ventures and Balderton amongst others who backed MagicPony in 2015 only to see it sell to Twitter for a reported $150m in June this year. For a fuller story see https://techcrunch.com/2016/06/20/twitter-is-buying-magic-pony-technology-which-uses-neural-networks-to-improve-images/
What are the lessons to take away from this stunning investment success?
Simon Thorpe is an angel investor, entrepreneur, coach, mentor and acts as non-executive director to and growth consulting with, technology companies. He runs his own business, Delta2020, is a senior advisor to Eleven Canterbury, a member of Cambridge Capital Group and Angel Academe.
In July 2016 Simon was named UKBAA Angel Investor of the Year 2016/2017
Follow Simon on Twitter @thorpesi
With interest rates at historic lows, for investor hunting for income it may be worth seeking out Wise Alpha
Peter Cowley is a Cambridge-based entrepreneur, non-executive director and mentor of many commercial and charitable enterprises. He has been investing in early-stage companies for more than nine years and in that time has made more than 50 investments, and had several positive exits.
He was named UKBAA UK Angel Investor of the year 2014/15.
Kirsty Ranger is the founder and CEO of IdeaSquares. IdeaSquares supports entrepreneurs towards crowdfunding on some of the world’s leading crowdfunding platforms.
In the next few years the winds of change will blow hard and soft. One of the characteristics of angel investing, certainly for many UK angels, is that their portfolios are pretty much 100% exposed to the UK economy. Both optimists and pessimists post the Referendum will be conscious that times they are a ‘changing.
What a relief that we have returned to a semblance of normality in British politics. After spending late May and June with the world transfixed by the Referendum, we can now get back to work. Of course July and August are normally quiet times in the angel world. Sun dappled yachts and villas tempt investors
Alasdair McPherson has been an active angel investor since 2008 and is Co-Founder of Craigie Capital which was founded in late 2010. Craigie Capital is an active seed and pre-seed investor and is a partner of the London Co-Investment Fund.
The Office for Budget Responsibility predicts that by 2019/20 the UK IHT bill will be £5.2bn. Couple this with reports (Unbiased.co.uk, 2015) suggesting that 75% of UK adults still do not have a valid will and it is evident that there is still much work to be done in educating clients as to why they should consider estate planning as a key part of their financial planning.
In the first of a new series, we profile impressive angel investors. Simon Murdoch has been angel investing for 17 years and also runs Episode 1 an early stage venture capital firm investing in fast growing and high potential software companies.
With the news so full of the Referendum and facts and figures being blended with vision and fear, we thought it would be amusing to look at both sides as if you were making an angel investment. Investors and Entrepreneurs are taking both sides and for varying reasons. Perhaps some of the thoughts raised below will help others who are still undecided to make a firm decision to vote in or out on 23rd June.
Whatever the outcome of the Referendum, your life will go on.... On 5th July we will be discussing this vital issue at Life after YOUR exit, but read on to find out why.
Headline numbers are always interesting, but digging behind the EIS and SEIS statistics is revealing.
With the angel market busier than it has been for years, and many new angels joining the market, here are 21 golden rules for angel investing.
Ian Warwick from Deepbridge Advisers considers the role of specialist fund managers in maximising investors' returns.
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