Angel Investors Demystify Early Stage Funding For Entrepreneurs

Sramana Mitra launches a series of in depth interviews with angel investors and working capital providers to help guide entrepreneurs through successful business financing as part of her One Million by One Million initiative.
By: Maureen Kelly
Sept. 29, 2010 - PRLog -- In the last decade, the startup industry has fundamentally changed. A few VCs practice early stage venture funding. Startup financing is largely in the hands of the entrepreneurs themselves.

To help fellow entrepreneurs navigate the murky (and often rough) waters of venture funding, one Silicon Valley strategy consultant, Ms. Sramana Mitra, has recently launched a series of in depth interviews with the key seed financing players in the startup eco-system.

This resource is free and found at

Ms. Mitra, a passionate entrepreneur herself, who has three of her own ventures under her belt, knows the pain of early stage business funding first hand. An MIT grad in engineering, Ms. Mitra learned business by building her own companies.

She parlayed her own experience and expertise into a successful consulting practice, where she has advised over eighty small and large businesses on their positioning, product validation and go-to-market strategy.

Earlier this year Ms. Mitra launched the One Million by One Million (1M/1M) global initiative that aims to help one million entrepreneurs reach $1 million in revenue each. The 1M/1M initiative, as Ms. Mitra sees it, is a pro-active, hands-on, comprehensive support for entrepreneurs, providing education, business coaching, feedback and personal introductions.

The financing interview series called Seed Capital From Angel Investors includes famed Silicon Valley "super-angels", regional angel group managers, SBA government officials and working capital lenders. Each interviewee reveals his or her investing criteria, their methods of deal screening, and some alarming statistics.  A super-angel in Silicon Valley, Mike Maples, says he receives 7,000 deals a year and invests in 12-15 at most.

“The reject pile of the angel and venture investors is huge, and they keep telling us that the entrepreneurs coming to them are not ready,” says Mitra.  “In 1M/1M, we’re focused on making sure that entrepreneurs do not go out to raise money prematurely and without adequate validation, a sure path to failure.”

Mitra says, “Startups land is littered with failures – 600,000 companies go out of business every year in America.  The 1M/1M initiative is trying to reduce this ‘infant entrepreneurs mortality’ rate.”

Some experts in early stage financing interviewed include:
1. Larry Chaityn, Keiretsu Forum, New York Tri-State Chapters President
2. Amit Grover, Member, Mumbai Angels
3. Eric Paley, Managing Partner, Founder Collective
4. Manu Kumar, Founder And Chief Firestarter, K9 Ventures
5. Ho Nam, General Partner, Altos Ventures
6. Brad Feld, Managing Director, Foundry Group
7. Jeff Clavier, Founder And Managing Partner, SoftTech VC
8. Alan Rossiter, Vice Chairman, Springboard Capital
9. Mike Maples, Founder And Managing Partner, Floodgate
10. Basil Peters, CEO and Fund Manager, Fundamental Technologies II
11. Peter Birkeland, RAIN Fund Program Manager, RAIN Source Capital
12. Padmaja Ruparel, President, Indian Angel Network
13. M. Todd Dean, Keiretsu Forum, Northwest Chapter President
14. Corey Silva, Assistant Manager, River Valley Investors
15. Randy Williams, Founder and CEO, Keiretsu Forum
16. Malvern D. Lusky, Individual Angel, Houston Angel Network
17. Paul Olliver, Wider Wake Networks
18. Bob Aholt, Pasadena Angels
19. Nicola Corzine, Band of Angels Acorn Fund

Together these interviews offer a growing compendium of information on early stage funding that supports one of the 1M/1M initiative's goals of being a comprehensive and in-depth resource for early stage entrepreneurs.

Additional 1M/1M resources:

·Free online 1M/1M strategy roundtables for entrepreneurs held every week:

·“One Million by One Million” group on LinkedIn:

·“One Million by One Million” page on Facebook:

·“One Million by One Million” on Twitter: @1Mby1M

Ms. Sramana Mitra is available to comment on launching a startup and growth acceleration, bootstrapping, positioning, and early stage funding for entrepreneurs. Media contact: Maureen Kelly,

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Sramana Mitra is a technology entrepreneur and strategy consultant, she runs the 1M/1M initiative, has founded three companies, writes the blog, Sramana Mitra on Strategy ( and is the author of the Entrepreneur Journeys book series - Entrepreneur Journeys; Bootstrapping: Weapon Of Mass Reconstruction; Positioning: How To Test, Validate, And Bring Your Idea To Market; and Innovation: Need Of The Hour - as well as Vision India 2020 (All books by Sramana Mitra are available from
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