Whether this is the first time kick starting your own venture or if you’re an experienced
serial entrepreneur, sourcing early-stage funding never gets any easier. Anyone who’s
started their own business will confirm the same.
Other than diving in at the deep end with the inevitable investor pitch, you’d think there
would be other options out there to harvest funds for your bright idea? And you’d be right.
Let’s take a look at them.
A trend that has taken off globally over the last decade, crowdfunding is fast becoming one
of the most viable sources of funding for new and old businesses alike. Alongside the
international leaders in crowdfunding such as Indiegogo and Kickstarter, a whole host of
dedicated Indian platforms now also exist ready to support the latest start-up ideas across a
range of industries, from creative to medical to social enterprises.
2. Cut costs
Never underestimate the power of saving money. When you’re starting out, try in every way
possible to keep unavoidable costs to a minimum. Share office space, delay superfluous
purchases, utilise existing equipment. The more you save at the beginning, the easier raising
capital will eventually be.
3. Venture Debt
Venture debt is both flexible and efficient. Generally this will mean a three-year term loan
with warrants for company stock, usually for equity-backed startups that lack the assets for
traditional debt financing. The capital from a venture debt loan will allow you to progress
ahead of predicted milestones.
4. Non-dilutive capital
Don’t overlook grants before you turn to venture capital funds and angel investors. Avoid
giving up equity ownership for as long as you can get away with. A benefit of these sources
is that many are milestone driven, which provides operative motivation for your startup.
5. Challenges and competitions
Look out for pitching initiatives or competitions that are being run through various platforms
or educational institutes. These challenges provide an opportunity for new ventures to pitch
their breakthrough ideas and win potential funding. For example, this month, Impact Guru
and IIT Bombay are hosting CrowdPitch Competition 2017, providing upcoming startups with
a platform to present their innovative ideas and products as well as winning great cash
It’s vital you take the right steps to nurturing your idea financially and not to rely on
investors alone. What steps are you taking to ensure your startup is a commercial success?
Over to you.
About Impact Guru
Impact Guru offers a complete crowdfunding solution that combines social or donation
crowdfunding, rewards crowdfunding for individuals, nonprofits, social enterprises, or startups
for all their fundraising needs – be it small or large. The company was incubated at Harvard
Innovation Lab’s Venture Initiation Program in USA in 2014 and PACT at Impact Hub in Singapore
in 2015. Impact Guru has offices in Mumbai, New Delhi, Singapore, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala
Lumpur, and San Francisco.