By Marcos Dinnerstein
On Thursday May 17th, Starta Accelerator will be conducting, Angel Investor Crash Course: How to turn a hobby into a profession, a full day course on investing. I had a chance to speak with the team recently to learn what attendees can expect of the day.
What is the goal of the course?
Our motto is “Venture to the People.” Our goal is to democratize the closed world of venture capital. We envision Starta Ventures Academy as being the go-to resource for anyone who is eager to learn about venture and angel investing and a way for beginning investors to contribute their expertise or financial resources to the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Our mission is to expand the tech funding landscape by bringing non-traditional players, such as business executives, owners of SMEs, and other high-net-worth individuals, into the ecosystem as angel investors. Our courses will be taught by industry insiders – providing practical content, a high level of attendee-presenter interaction, and the opportunity to build a network in venture tech. We are a new division of Starta Ventures, a brand which includes Starta Capital (VC firm), Starta Accelerator (tech accelerator for European startups in NYC), Token Rockets (startup blockchain accelerator), and Sputnik Space (coworking space).
Who are the instructors and their background?
All of our instructors are experienced and accomplished professionals working in the venture tech industry. They come from diverse backgrounds, such as law, entrepreneurship, and marketing. Most of them are current Angel investors or startup founders in venture tech, which gives them the ability to share highly relevant and up-to-date information.
Who is the target student?
The target student is anyone who is seriously interested in becoming an Angel investor or wants to learn more about the VC and startup ecosystem. High-net-worth individuals can benefit most from our courses, since they are best-positioned to take action and apply the knowledge and the venture network we offer. No prior experience in venture tech is necessary.
What other courses are out there and why should people chose your?
Other venture investing courses are lacking in two critical areas. First, they are typically taught by only one or two people, who are well-versed in theory, but lack real-world experience and can only offer their own individual perspectives. Our courses are taught by a team of industry experts who are seasoned professionals in venture tech. They provide a broad range of perspectives and experiences. Additionally, our speakers come from both sides of the table, both Angel investors and startup founders, so students get to learn about the key considerations from both parties.
Second, our courses are unique in that they provide the opportunity for participants to build a network in the venture tech community. We leverage the established network of our parent brand, Starta Ventures, which is connected to a “deep bench” of venture professionals. Plugging into our network can save a great deal of time, expediting the process of entering this ecosystem and giving Academy students the opportunity to join the Starta Ventures deal flow as newly-minted Angel investors.
Finally, in contrast to other courses which are often one week or longer and can cost over $10K, our courses are less time-consuming and expensive – making them much more convenient for busy professionals.
Katy Dorozhkina, Founding Partner, Starta Ventures
“Back when I started in venture, I wanted a course that showed me the whole venture tech ecosystem. I came from an entrepreneurial background, but even after closing over 30 venture deals , I still thought I could benefit from a structured VC course. I took a week-long intensive course from one of the leading universities. Although, it did fill in some of the gaps I had in my theoretical knowledge, I recognized how much it lacked on the practical side.
Now at Starta we created courses which I wish had been available to me back then. We are giving just enough theory and a lot of practical real life knowledge and insight from top industry experts.
Theory is great but insights from real industry insiders and practical experience matter the most “
What common mistakes do investors make?
Investing in venture tech is like anything else – there is a learning curve. Dedicating time to preparation will significantly improve your rate of success. The network aspect we offer is also key – a strong network is basically a prerequisite for consistent success in Angel investing. Collaborating with or investing in the wrong people can quickly take you down a path of frustration and financial losses.