The Angel Is In The Detail

By Alvin R. Cabral
Khaleej Times, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) As defined by “Investopedia”, angel investors are those who invest in startups — usually family and friends — whose capital is used as a one-time investment to help a business propel or support it in its difficult early stages.

DUBAI

Startups are everywhere. A good number of them even have ideas we may have not seen coming (that we wished we had beat them to the draw for it). But as any company practically starting from scratch, there’s one essential thing they need to take their ideas to greater heights: funding.

Don’t have enough seed money? Try pulling the heartstrings of angel investors. “We live in interesting times, as the Chinese proverb goes,” Saad Khan, chief executive of Whoopey.com, told Khaleej Times.

“The UAE’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is poised to revolutionise in the coming years. So more power can be added to it if entrepreneurs are focused and innovate to create niche and differentiating business models.”

The same kind of focus and innovation that would attract these wingless-but-still-more-than-happy-to-help angels. As defined by Investopedia, angel investors are those who invest in startups — usually family and friends — whose capital is used as a one-time investment to help a business propel or support it in its difficult early stages.

They also provide more favourable terms compared to other lenders, since they usually invest in the entrepreneur starting the business rather than its viability. In short, angel investors — the opposite of venture capitalists — are more focused on helping startups take their first steps.

Whoopey.com, an e-commerce platform based in Dubai, raised $1.5 million (Dh5.51 million) from international angel investors in an initial round of funding. After two years, Khan says, it plans to seek up to $5 million to spruce up its resources and technologies, as well as build a call centre base in India.

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