10 Oct —

Offline contact between entrepreneur and investor is crucial for success of crowdfunding campaign

BusinessWoman


Crowdfunding platform Symbid successfully organizes events that focus on speeding up capital request

Rotterdam, 10 October 2013 – A physical meeting between the entrepreneur behind a company that is crowdfunding, is essential in order to finish the crowdfunding campaign. For new propositions these meetings allow a “jump start” of the campaign. That is the conclusion of Symbid, that in the last two years has successfully rounded up 23 campaigns worth EUR 2 million. A campaign that has been funded for approximately 60 to 70%, only needs a few days to a few weeks in order to reach 100% funding. It's very well possible to speed up this process through an event. An offline meeting with the entrepreneur is crucial, is the opinion of a lot of investors. How larger the investment to be done, the larger the chance is that an investor will want to meet the founders of the company.

Symbid, an online equity-based crowdfunding platform from Rotterdam, organized three offline pitch events in the last months. The events allowed a collection of companies that are starting or finishing their campaigns, to pitch in front of a room of Symbid-investors. Till now this led to the successful funding of two companies by several crowd-investors. For the starting companies is meant a jump start of their campaign.

Social media and online networking are seen as very important for success within the crowdfunding industry. Though these media are undoubtedly play a major role in the coverage surrounding a campaign, they are also less suited to create a qualitative relationship that is often important for larger investors and entrepreneurs. During a crowdfunding campaign a large part of the founders will first attract funding via their immediate network (friends and family), a group they also know offline too. The investors who are not yet connected to the entrepreneur and vice versa, also want to meet the founders offline before placing a large investment.

Pitch events

Symbid has recently organized the first pitch events where crowdfunding-entrepreneurs could pitch to a group of investors who are also active on the Symbid platform. The events were held across The Netherlands. Over 190 investors subscribed to these events, where eight different entrepreneurs could present their idea. Apart from the capital, the entrepreneurs gathered knowledge, new networks and they received critical questions about their business plan. After a pitch of about ten minutes, investors had the chance to ask a question during the following Q&A. The events were finished with a networking drinks.

Korstiaan Zandvliet, CEO of Symbid, explains: “Of course it's very important to present the right information online, and to digitally pitch in a convincing and inspiring way. Attracting the majority of investors can very well be done online. However, some things that are very hard to digitize are also important to investors, including the entrepreneurs themselves. Business plans can be changed, but the personality of the founder is extremely hard to change. Investors invest in the entire package, so it's logical that they want to know all the aspects of the deal.”

The events of the last months are the first try-outs of a series of pitch events which will be organized on a quarterly basis. The events will most probably also be a standard part of the crowdfunding process. The goal is to let entrepreneurs with interesting business plans and entrepreneurs with over 60% funding, pitch to a room full of Symbid- and extern investors. The expectation is that the last 40% funding will be gather more quickly after participating in an event. The next event will most likely be held in the beginning of December.