CWRU Professor seeks unaccredited angel investors

Case Western Reserve University: logoHave you directly invested in very early stage startup companies in the past? At the time, did you have a net worth of under a million dollars and earn less than $200,000 annually?
If so, Dr. Scott Shane, Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies at Case Western Reserve University, is looking to interview you for a new book he’s working on that aims to debunk many of the myths of angel investors and angel investing.
Here’s an email message he sent me describing his project and what he seeks: If you’d like to contact him and possibly help with the book, you’ll also find his email address below too.

Dr. Shane picks up the thread here…
By “unaccredited” I mean the SEC definition. That is, a person who earns less than $200,000 filing taxes as an individual or $300,000 filing taxes as a married couple AND who has a net worth of less than $1 million.
I’m writing a book on angel investing (to be published by Oxford University Press) that looks at the frequency of angel investing, the characteristics of angel investments, the activities of business angels etc…
There is, unfortunately, a lot of bad information out there about angel investing. For example, if you look at truly representative surveys of the population such as the Federal Reserve’s survey of consumer finances or small business finances, the Kauffman New Firm Survey, or the Entrepreneurship in the United States Assessment, as well as administrative data (tax authority information from the various states on the usage of angel tax credits), you will see that approximately half of the people who make angel investments (personal investments in private companies that they do not own or operate and are not operated by a friend or family member). No one talks about these people. They just focus on accredited investors who are angels.
My goal is to interview about 15 of these people to add qualitative information to the chapter about unaccredited investors.
Because I did some focus groups with accredited angels for five of the Federal Reserve banks, I have the qualitative information that I need on the accredited angels.
Anything you can do to help would be much appreciated.
If you want to know more about what I research, see my web page.
Scott Shane
scott dot shane -at- case dot edu
A. Malachi Mixon III Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies
Department of Economics
Weatherhead School of Management
Case Western Reserve University

3 comments on “CWRU Professor seeks unaccredited angel investors

  1. This will make good reading. I have contacted Prof Shane with tales of ten investments of which two have died in mysterious circumstances (fraud?) and the rest are not much better than the living dead. All were made in groups of angels. No more investments until a realisation is made. Anyone done better? I hope so! And I am someone who devises entrepreneurial training tools specialising in equity distribution.

  2. e-mail sent:
    Dear Scott
    As you are writing a book for OUP, I suggest that you contact:
    Fiona Reid
    Oxford Science Enterprise Centre
    Said Business School
    She will be able to provide the definition for an “informed Investor” in the UK and introductions to business angels.
    Of course, some people think that the entrepreneurial world begins and ends in Silicon Valley.
    Have you come across Paul Graham and YCombinator?
    Paul is a success entrepreneur, combinator and essay writer.
    Let me know if I can help and do mention Equity Fingerprint to your students.

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