Investors from Wisconsin, the Midwest and beyond will share their expertise with entrepreneurs and others at the Wisconsin Early Stage Symposium, to be held Nov. 13-14 at Madison’s Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center.
With two weeks to go, more than 30 angel groups, venture and private equity funds and individual investors will take part in the symposium. Investors will participate in 10 panel discussions during the two-day conference, which will also feature the eighth annual “Elevator Pitch Olympics” for companies in a seed financing stage and the sixth annual Wisconsin Angel Network Early Stage presentation track for companies seeking angel investments and beyond.
Other investor-oriented tracks include the annual “First Look Forum” for campus-based discoveries and networking events for accredited investors only. Investors will be able to attend 26 company presentations during the Wisconsin Angel Network tracks, and will serve as judges during the Elevator Pitch Olympics.
Investors registered so far represent groups such as Angels on the Water, Baird Venture Partners, Calumet Venture Fund, Capital Midwest Fund, Chippewa Valley Angels, DaneVest Tech Fund, DFJ Mercury Group, Gener8tor, Hyde Park Angels, Inventure Capital, Keane-D’Souza Fund, Madison Development Corp., NEW Capital Fund, Peak Ridge Capital, Phenomenelle Angels, QuestMark Partners, Shamrock Partners, Silicon Pastures, Silicon Valley Bank, Springboard Capital Strategies, Stateline Angels, Venture Investors, Venture Management LLC, Wisconsin Capital Partners, Wisconsin Investment Partners, Ziegler Wealth Management, the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, banks and individual investors.
Here are panel discussions that include investors as panelists or moderators:
“Creating an early stage capital program that works for Wisconsin” – Building Wisconsin’s supply of early stage capital – from seed to venture – will be a top priority in the next session of the Legislature. Hear about efforts to create a state-leveraged plan to attract more private capital.
“Does angel or venture capital make sense for your company” – Not every start-up or emerging company is a candidate for angel or venture financing. Hear from experienced investors and entrepreneurs on when you should seek angel or venture financing, and how much, or pursue other avenues to finance your company.
“What happens next? Post-funding strategies for angel-backed companies” – The good news: Wisconsin has many active angel networks and funds that have invested in startups. The challenging news: Those groups must work with investors and others downstream to realize a return on their investment. What are strategies for investors and entrepreneurs?
“Entrepreneurs’ workshop: Perfecting your short-building elevator pitch” – Delivering the right pitch at the right time for your company or idea may not be a science, but it’s an art form. Join our experienced mentors for an informative, hands-on session aimed at preparing entrepreneurs for a short but productive ride on the “elevator.”
“Coming to terms with your term sheet” – For many entrepreneurs, a private equity term sheet is a mysterious document to be approached with great caution. Demystify the process by peeking behind the scenes of a “mock” term-sheet negotiation, with role-playing by an experienced entrepreneur and veteran investors.
“Heading for the exit: Keeping your company on track for merger or acquisition” – Savvy entrepreneurs know they can make money day-to-day by running a good business, but the much bigger payoff comes when they plan for an exit from the start.
“What health-care reform means to life science companies” – It’s the law of the land… or is it? Federal elections will be decided Nov. 6, but the debate over reforming the nation’s health care will likely continue. Learn how the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling affects researchers, biotech and medical device companies, electronic health records providers and more.
“What are investors looking for – bugs, clicks, tools or apps?” – Have investors backed away from biotech deals in favor of Internet plays and software applications – or has the dip in life science investment begun to reverse itself? Hear from investors on what they want in a market that increasingly values faster returns, and how entrepreneurs are responding.
“Off the corridor: Sparkling companies outside Wisconsin’s biggest metros” – Early stage companies in Wisconsin can crop up just about anywhere, and not just in the Madison-Milwaukee corridor. Learn about young companies that are taking root across the state – and how they getting noticed.
“The 30,000-foot-view: Perspectives from the region’s investors” – Wisconsin’s investor tax credits for angel investors are viewed as being among the best in the country, but what are other promising programs and practices in the region? Hear about the future of angel investing from some of the region’s top investors.
The conference is produced by the Wisconsin Technology Council and its partners and sponsors. Visit http://www.wisearlystage.com/ to register, review sponsorship opportunities or to learn more.