“As a serial investor who has founded half a dozen companies and raised tens of millions of dollars in venture and strategic capital, and then as a ‘super angel’ investor who has helped to fund over 80 companies myself, it was clear that the world would be a better (or at least easier) place if there were a single underlying platform connecting and facilitating every entrepreneur, angel and venture capitalist in the world,” said Rose to VentureBeat in an interview today.
Already, Gust is the official and exclusive deal flow management platform for more than 600 angel investment groups, 150 venture capital funds, dozens of incubators and accelerators, and other entities with a hand in creating, growing and supporting early-stage startups.
Gust also counts startup-focused enterprise divisions such as Microsoft BizSpark and HP StartUp Central and government agencies in the U.S. and abroad among its members
The company’s global platform, endorsed by all of its constituents, will give every startup all the tools needed to create an access-controlled website for investor relations. The same site will also serve as a funding application form for VC and angel groups.
Angelsoft/Gust founder David Rose said this aspect of the platform is “similar to the CommonApp [a widely used application form template] for college admissions, but on steroids.”
The company isn’t a spring chicken, as startups go. Angelsoft has spent the past seven years gathering investor-members to use and test its platform for early-stage funding. Currently, Rose tells us, the Gust dealflow platform is being used by more than 35,000 accredited investors in 65 countries. He continued to note that, based on existing stats from Angelsoft, those investors will use Gust to process more than 5,000 business plans every month.
“Gust is indeed a world changer,” said Rose. “Exponential advances in technology mean that the costs of starting a company are dropping like a rock, at the same time as globalization is bringing the entire world into a single market. With less cash needed to fund a startup, more people are able to get involved in the process (the ‘democratization of capital’) and we are seeing an explosion in global angel investing.”
In addition to the dealflow platform, Angelsoft is also known for its Investor Search Engine, which we have described in the past as a Kayak for startups. The engine takes Angelsoft’s database of investors and allows startups to filter them by distance from a location, investment stage, average round size and more. The search tool also reveals investors’ average response time, number of applications each month and actual investment amounts.
Rose told us Gust is launching with partnerships with dozens of major organizations, and we should see many more announcements in the months ahead. The company is currently in discussions with investors for its second institutional funding round.
Here’s an interview Rose gave while onsite at DEMO:
Angelsoft/Gust is one of 80 companies chosen by VentureBeat to launch at the DEMO Fall 2011 event taking place this week in Silicon Valley. After our selection, the companies pay a fee to present. Our coverage of them remains objective.
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