From September 25th to 29th 2017 Amsterdam is fully focused on connecting startups and investors, during Amsterdam Capital Week. More than 20 events in one week are hosted about growing your business and raising money. During one of the events, Capital Tour XXL, I’m helping startups to meet, learn from and connect with investors, as a tour guide, cycling from a diverse selection of investor offices.
€’s, €’s, €’s
As a startup you have three main concerns: the business model, your skills/team and funding. To grow your business exponentially, you are constantly burning money. And to keep up with that, you require multiple rounds of fundraising. When you take into account a single round can take 6-18 months, fundraising can be a full time job. During Amsterdam Capital Week I am recording everything that can help you to raise money as a startup and during Capital Tour XXL I’m doing that as a tour guide cycling from investor to investor.
Biking through the funding landscape
“We saw a desire from startups in need of funding to make contact with investors in a more informal way,” says Simone Schoutens owner of Capital Tour XXL, former active at Professional Rebel: “Professional Rebel organized startup tours before, for corporates to visit startups and learn from their innovative solutions and way of working. This led to the idea of enabling startups to bike from investor to investor in Amsterdam during Amsterdam Capital Week.”
Startups experience a threshold to making contact with investors. An investor is a person you look up to as a founder and you are not always sure how to speak with them. At the same time it’s not easy to find an investor, because he or she doesn’t want every gold digging founder on his doorstep. What makes Capital Tour XXL so successful? Simone: “In one day startups have the possibility to explore the funding landscape in a city and connect with investors in an informal way. At the investor’s office, the startups can ask them anything they want to know about raising money. Capital Tour XXL’s goal is to demystify the world of capital and lower the barrier for startups to get in contact with investors.”
Build relationships up front
Leading up to the event I spoke with Arthur Nobel, co-founder of Flexpat about why he is attending Capital Tour XXL: “We like to build relationships with financing partners up front and as we look towards our next round of investment mid-next year. More importantly, we collect feedback from the market on our progress, our business case and our approach. This helps us to be better, in time. We like to see investors as customers as well, therefore an event like CTXXL is our way of customer success.”
Martijn Lentz is blogger and sme finance expert. He works as a product manager in finance at the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce. Capital Tour XXL takes place on September 28th 2017. More info? Visit capitaltourxxl.com