Entrepreneurs Conference: Inside Tips From ‘Shark’ Daymond John On Tapping Angel Capital

The multi-millionaire businessman, author, and star of ABC’s "Shark Tank" tells budding entrepreneurs how to hook private investors

Are you ready to swim with "sharks" like FUBU Founder Daymond John?

In today’s tight economic climate, angel financing continues to fill the gap in start-up capital between family, friends, and the business owner. There are more than 300,000 angels active in the country, funding over 60,000 companies and investing about $22 billion a year. Angel investors—private high net worth individuals—continue to provide the lion’s share of all seed funding compared to venture capitalists. In fact, there was a significant increase in angel investment activity in 2011, including a rise in total investment dollars, number of investments and deal size, reports the Center for Venture Research.

Attending networking events and elevator pitch competitions are the best ways to find angel investors. Still, meeting with an angel investor to pitch your business is like having that proverbial first date. How do you ensure that what you say is a turn on and not a turn off so that you get a second date or opportunity to close the deal with a written check in hand? Helping to shed some light on this subject is Daymond John, founder and CEO of the urban clothing line FUBU, co-star of ABC’s Shark Tank, and CEO of Shark Branding, who will help kick-off the opening event, “Equity Date With An Angel,” at the 2012 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo (BEEC2012) in Chicago (May 23-26). John will be joined by Timothy Reese, co-founder of the Minority Angel Investor Network and managing partner of Forge Intellectual Capital.

Timothy Reese, co-founder of the Minority Angel Investor Network

John will be on hand to hear business ideas, critique speed-date like pitches, and give tips on how best to jump-start and capitalize a business venture. He helped revolutionize the sportswear industry and urban fashion in the 1990s as founder, president and CEO of FUBU (“For Us, By Us”). He guided FUBU to $350 million in revenues in 1998, placing it at the same table with such designer sportswear labels as Donna Karan New York and Tommy Hilfiger. Over the last 18 years, John has evolved into more than a fashion mogul. In 2007 the street-smart businessman penned his first book, Display of Power: How FUBU Changed a World of Fashion, Branding & Lifestyle, which was named one of the best business books of 2007 by the Library Journal. It was followed by The Brand Within: Branding Yourself from Birth to The Boardroom, the second title in his “Display of Power” series of business, motivational and empowerment books for budding entrepreneurs.

John says he has embarked on a newfound mission—to head to Silicon Valley. “Tech companies excite me,” he says. “I want to bring all of my celebrity friends along with all of my marketing, lifestyle and branding knowledge and dig deep into technology,” adds the ambassador for Shopify.com, where any entrepreneur can easily and readily set up a professional e-store. So, “I have been aligning myself with a lot of tech companies that make life easier for entrepreneurs.”

With multiple business ventures on his resume, the multi-millionaire Shark financier, author, and branding guru, will share his knowledge on the practices that have helped entrepreneurs get private individuals to invest in their companies, including:

How to get investors to buy into your business idea.

How to communicate clearly your business idea, your market, and your competitive advantage.

How to demonstrate that your business is scalable, with enough growth potential to be a financial success.

How to steer clear of common errors like over valuation.

How make sure you and a potential investor are an ideal match both at the initial point of investment and throughout the tenure of the deal.

Select participants of the “Equity Date With An Angel” session will have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with a private investor during our business coaching sessions held throughout the conference.

John and Reese are among the accomplished entrepreneurs who will share their success secrets at the 2012 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo hosted by Nationwide, May 23-26, at the Hilton Chicago Hotel in Chicago, IL. Search and follow the hashtag #BEEC2012 on Twitter for the latest updates on conference speakers and sessions. Expect innovative sessions, high-powered speakers, and an early peek at the products, trends, and services you’ll need to stay ahead of the curve. To register and find out more, visit www.blackenterprise.com/ec/

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