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Venture capital is not the only source of investment for start-up businesses or small businesses. Many
companies are ﬁnanced by smaller investors in what is called “private placement.” For example, in
some areas there are groups of potential investors who meet occasionally to hear proposals. There are
also wealthy individuals who occasionally invest in new companies. In the lore of business start-ups, CHAPTER 22: GETTING FINANCED 22.3 groups of investors are often referred to as “doctors and dentists,” and individual investors are often
called “angels.” Many entrepreneurs turn to friends and family for investment.
Your next question of course is how to ﬁnd the “doctors, dentists, and angels” that might want to
invest in your business. The discussion in Chapter 9: The Business You’re In includes some government
agencies, business development centers, business incubators, and similar organizations that will be
tied into the investment communities in your area. Turn ﬁrst to the local Small Business Development
Center (SBDC), which is most likely associated with your local community college, or the Small
Business Administration (SBA) ofﬁces in your area. Names and website addresses are available
at www.sba.gov for the SBA, www.score.org for SCORE, and www.bplans.com/sb/ for a list of SBDC
You may want to try some secondary listing services and online sourcing businesses, although I
haven’t had speciﬁc dealings with any of them and can’t actually recommend any from experience.
I don’t know the owners and operators of the American Venture Capital Exchange, www.avce.com,
but I do know that they’ve been operating that site for many years. However, I haven’t actually used
the service. Use these services carefully, and understand that there may be some risk. Another wellknown offering is the Business Funding Directory at www.businessﬁnance.com.
And of course it’s always good to look ﬁrst at the main search engine sites. You could try the search for
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- Winter '09