Highway To Heaven

Cast Your Net

For many people, a starting point in the quest for angels is the Internet. But keep in mind that at this point, the Internet is a communications medium, not a capital-formation medium. It may turn up leads, but it's not going to deliver the goods lock, stock and barrel.

A good first stop is ACE-Net, an SBA initiative that uses the power of the Internet to match entrepreneurs with accredited investors. By listing your deal on ACE-Net, you make yourself known to the thousands of angel investors who have access to the site.

Moreover, according to Jere Glover, chief counsel of the SBA's Office of Advocacy, ACE-Net now offers contact information for 38 so-called nodes that can act as entrepreneurs' connections to angel investors. "Many of these nodes operate their own angel networks," Glover says. Their names, addresses and telephone numbers can be found at https://ace-net.sr.unh.edu. (The "https" designation indicates that ACE-Net is a secure site, with limitations on access.)

You can also type the words "angel investor" into your search engine, and all manner of matter will surface. There's something new on the Internet every day and some of what comes up may be worth looking into. But beware: There's a lot of junk out there, too.

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This article was originally published in the June 1999 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Highway To Heaven.

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