While companies going through Halo are mostly too early stage for Venture Capital companies, clearly there is great value in getting a first sight of the pipeline for later VC rounds. Halo already has a number of paying members from across the UK and Ireland, so come along and see what the fuss is about!
Halo is the business angel network for Northern Ireland. Like most angel networks it provides mostly early stage investment in the range of £50k – £500k. This is usually too early stage and too small for venture capital companies to be interested in directly.
However Halo facilitates strong links with VCs as it recognises that these will form an important later part of the successful flow of companies from start up to growth. This link is felt to be so important that Halo has a special class of membership for VC companies.
For VC companies, working with Halo provides access to a strong deal flow of early stage companies. And this is not just applicable to VCs based in Northern Ireland or Ireland. Many UK-based VCs have discovered the quality of the NI deal flow. The reasons are:
- NI has a very high public GDP of around 70%
- There is thus significant public funding coming into universities, colleges and local companies which is fuelling research and development
- There is a strong local culture of invention and entrepreneurship
- This deal flow is not widely recognised especially in England and thus there is less competition for the best deals
The key for non-NI based VCs is the private Halo video website. All VC Halo Members have access to this site which allows fast and efficient screening of the deals without the need to attend Halo meetings. Within 24 hours of each Halo investment meeting, all pitches are on the site in a clear 2 window format. The ‘talking head’ is supplemented by the Powerpoint slides which are fully synchronised.
While we would encourage VCs to come to some of the meetings, the deals can be efficiently reviewed at your convenience and with judicious use of the fast forward and stop buttons as required. However once a deal looks interesting, the Halo network can be used to engage with interested angels, that can act as your local point of contact, nearer to the companies.