Ice Angels’ Robbie Paul great advice

Ice Angels have invested over $100m into high growth startups and Robbie has some great advice for founders and investors.

It has been an exciting 16 years for the investment arm of The Icehouse. More than $100m has been invested into 165 startups since 2003.

We’ve invested in technology to re-grow human skin for burn victims, bugs that extract gold from e-waste, software for managing “swarms” of robots, “intelligent” asthma inhalers, an online platform that helps users learn to play music, and much more.

We have had startups compete and win globally and others stumble and fail. Around 130 are still on their journey.

To mark our $100m milestone, we want to share some of the insights we’ve learned from the founders and investors of some of New Zealand’s boldest and brightest startups.

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SwipedOn CEO explains how his Tauranga SaaS startup went global

SwipedOn is a fast-growing Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) that is used in more than 2000 cities worldwide, and it all started in the Bay of Plenty.

The company provides an iPad-based visitor management system that replaces visitor books, which has proven hugely popular in the UK and US, as well as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

According to CEO and founder Hadleigh Ford, there’s no reason why New Zealand can’t have its own Silicon Valley based right here in the Bay of Plenty.

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Why you SHOULD be an angel investor… it’s all about portfolio management

Australian early stage angel investors often treat start-up investing like horse racing. They punt with money they’re willing to lose, but this approach has led to a lack of discipline and very poor returns.

They place a few bets based on a good jockey (founder), their form (prior success), the stable (team and advisers), horse (business), equipment (technology), running line (strategy) and weather conditions (market), but start-ups should not be treated as an adrenaline-shot gamble where the majority of investors lose their money and a few “lucky” punters make a killing.

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Little Yellow Bird’s Samantha Jones on the garment industry and sustainability (listen)

Little Yellow Bird founder Samantha Jones phones in from Thailand to chat about her business, the impact of the garment industry on the environment and humans, sustainability, and more.

“As much as we wish we didn’t, we all have problems. Some may just shrug them off and accept them, others – like Samantha Jones – get up and do something about them.”

That’s what we at Idealog wrote about Little Yellow Bird founder Samantha Jones back in 2017. The winner of the Young New Zealand Innovator Award at the 2017 Innovation Awards – and not to mention a recipient of a prestigious Edmund Hillary Fellowship – Jones has been on a mission to change perceptions and prove you can do good, while still doing good business.

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Angels Tell the Truth: What Makes a New Company Fundable

There’s more than $100 billion dollars currently being invested annually by venture capitalists, private equity firms and angel investors. Why do some businesses get a piece of the action and others don’t? It comes down to the fundability of the company.

Entrepreneurs may think they have a great business idea, but investors may not see it that way. To learn why, entrepreneurs need to look at their business from the investor’s point of view. Just like the founder, investors are looking for a match made in heaven – when both company founder and investor make money in the end and all live happily ever after.

As an experienced angel investor, managing partner and CEO of Sofia Fund, here’s my advice – consider this the ultimate primer on demystifying the angel world.

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