JumpStart NJ executive director O’Neill shares tips for raising angel money with NJ’s technology sta

TRENTON, NJ JumpStart New Jersey Angel Network (JumpStart) executive director Katherine O’Neill visited the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s (EDA) Commercialization Center for Innovative Technologies (CCIT) in North Brunswick to present “Top Ten Essentials for Raising Angel Money” to CCIT tenants and other interested New Jersey technology professionals.

During the presentation, O’Neill, who was named one of NJBIZ’s 2015 “Best 50 Women in Business,” advised entrepreneurs to have the following available when meeting with investors: •A one to two minute introduction with the company’s value clearly identified; •An excellent one page business summary; and •A list of the team (and advisory board) members. O’Neill also said that entrepreneurs should be able to demonstrate that they have: •Domain and competitive knowledge; •Focus and ability to execute their plan; •Skin (read: money) in the game; •Initiative, character, drive, knowledge and coachability; •Honesty and transparency (numbers provided should be real, not inflated); •Capital efficiency (e.g. no large corporate salaries); and •A proven track record (company’s ability to execute and meet its goals).

O’Neill has led JumpStart since 2003, a year after it was founded. JumpStart, which began as a collaborative effort between the EDA and the New Jersey Technology Council (NJTC), has grown to 45 members and is one of the largest angel investing networks in the Mid-Atlantic region. Under O’Neill’s leadership, the network has invested a total of more than $50 million in more than 65 early-stage technology-based companies. Approximately 50% of the funds have gone to New Jersey companies, including EDA-supported Bergen Medical Products in Cedar Knolls and South Brunswick-based United Silicon Carbide Inc.

JumpStart holds quarterly “Meet the Angels” sessions, which are informal opportunities for invited early-stage entrepreneurs to meet with network members.