For a lot of start-ups, creating an innovative idea is not the problem: it is collecting money to execute the idea. Fortunately, there are a lot of creative ways to do so. Sander Waterval has got a lot of experience in the matter, since he executed a lot of his expansive ideas.
Right now, Sander is working on one of his dream projects, the Wikkelboat, on which we have actually organized a barbeque last night after a cruise with Ronald Scholtus on one of the boats of Rotterdamishot. The Wikkelboat project is due in two weeks from now. It’s the first Wikkelboat ever to be made and will be located at the also to be expanded harbour ‘ The Red Apple Marina’ in Rotterdam. This project costs a lot of money as you can imagine and so, you need to be a bit creative funding it:
- By involving your suppliers and partly paying them after delivery. When the project is done, the Wikkelboat will create turnover because it will be rented out. This money can be used to pay off the suppliers;
- By involving your clients and let them pay on forehand with an interesting discount;
- Get some extra cash by leveraging this by the bank;
- Check for possibilities to get some subsidies.
When going on board with investors, there are some things to keep in mind. The most important lesson of today if you ask me, was to make sure that you are still the chief of your company after the investments. If the investor pays for most of your company, they have a lot of rights to make big decisions as well. Because of this and because quite a few investors do not like to take risks on their own in an early stage startup, it’s a good idea to match investors to fund the company.
After finding the right investor(s) for your company, always make sure you do your research on them and make sure that when they do research on you, which they will, your story will be good! Your story should be the one that makes them go on board with you and the idea of your company should be clear and unique. Doing research about them might seem a bit out of the ordinary, but when you promise someone to spend the rest of your life with them, you want to know them first right? Well guess what… when you choose your investors, you will spend your business life with them! You can ask around for information about the investor in your own network or find someone the investor has worked with or invested in already. Make sure the ideas and goals your investor has, are the same as yours.
Most (angel)investors know each other and are willing to invest in your company together. Know this: they will nog arrange this for you! Be on top of it and make sure to find the right mix of investors for your company.