Mock Angel Program

The Mock Angel Program is an intensive program to prepare ventures for consideration by sophisticated investors. It is difficult to overcome an inauspicious first impression. For that reason, ITEN highly recommends that all ventures go through our Mock Angel Program before approaching potential investors.

Following graduation, ITEN will:

  • Introduce you to over 95 ITEN-affiliated investors and investor groups, both locally and throughout the country.
  • Champion your company via a focused PR campaign as well as introduce and connect you to additional events and opportunities to advance your venture

How the Program Works

The Mock Angels meet twice a month with two companies scheduled at each meeting. Your company will present a 12-15 minute presentation to a group of 5 – 10 Mock Angels. Your presentation is followed by 45 minutes of feedback from the Mock Angels. The Mock Angel members are investors, serial entrepreneurs and subject matter experts.

The presentation and feedback period are videoed. A copy of the video is given to the presenting company at the conclusion of the presentation, minimizing the need to take notes during the discussion.

The Mock Angels also rate the company’s presentation quantitatively, on a grid that includes the following areas of consideration:

  • Problem/Opportunity: What problem are you solving and for whom? What’s wrong with how the problem is addressed right now? How big is the need? How bad is the “hurt?”
  • Compelling Solution: How is your solution compelling compared to current methods of solving the problem? What’s unique and special about your solution?
  • Competition Analysis: Who are the incumbent providers? Who are other new players? Who has market share? How are you differentiated from the older and newer players? Why will you win against the competitors?
  • Revenue Model: Who are your customers? What is it that you’re selling to them? How do they pay: once, recurring, subscription, etc.? How much do they pay?
  • Marketing Plan and Strategy: How do you reach your customers? How do they know about you and your product/solution/service? How do you engage customers in your product development? How do you determine you pricing?
  • Sales Strategy: Web-based sales? Building a sales team? How have you acquired your first customers? Will you acquire future customers in the same way?
  • Management Team and Plan: Why is your team the one that will create success? What strengths and deficiencies are in your management team? How are you addressing the deficiencies? Who have you identified that will join the company as soon as you get funded?
  • Technology/Scalability: How much work remains to get your product/service complete and ready for fast scaling? What roadblocks are in your way? What technical challenges are yet to be overcome? How will you overcome them?
  • Financial Projections and Funding Plan: How much has already been invested? How much do you need now and what will the money be used for? How much will you need in the future and for what? What will the future revenues and costs be? How many current investors are they and how difficult will it be to get a new funding structure approved?
  • Current Deal Being Offered: How much of the company is being offered? What is the capitalization table after funding? What is the pre-money valuation and how do you justify it?
  • Exit Strategy: How will investors realize their investment multiples? Who are likely acquirers? What are prior exit comparable and what were their return multiples? How many years until you exit?
  • Presentation Skills: Do the charts tell the story well and compliment the verbal pitch? Is it a clear and concise presentation showing a high level of credibility and knowledge about the business and space? Is your verbal style neither too passive nor too aggressive and do you exude confidence and commitment to the venture?
  • Receptivity to Mentoring: Are you open to constructive criticism and “tough love” challenges to your assumptions and strategies? Are you willing to hear other points of view and learn from what is suggested? Do you take challenges openly and seriously, or defensively? Are you actively seeking guidance from the Mock Angel mentors who offer their help?

You will receive a summary of the quantitative evaluation, along with list of Mock Angels that are willing to work with you to address the challenge areas in preparation for a second presentation to the Mock Angel group.

When the company and mentors are in agreement that the deficiencies have been addressed and the presentation strengthened in all categories indicated, the company’s revised deck is evaluated for readiness and the company is invited to present for graduation. This is typically within 6-10 weeks.

Graduation from Mock Angels means it is the opinion of ITEN that the company has addressed all the big questions about their venture and is prepared to ask for other people’s money.

To enter the Mock Angel program, you must be a registered Startup of ITEN, and logged in. If your company is pre-revenue, you must first complete the other modules in the Startup Commercialization Program, or demonstrated appropriate traction.

How to Access This Application

To access this application, you must log in as a startup and you will find the application under the top menu “My Options“.

How to Access This Application

To access this application, you must log in as a startup and you will find the application under the top menu “My Options“.

The following accelerate programs we offers also require log in as startup:

Haven’t registered yet? Click here to read more and then sign up as an ITEN Startup. 

Mock Angel Graduates

Graduation means it is the opinion of the ITEN Mock Angels that the company has addressed all the big questions and have thought through their business well enough to ask for other people’s money. They have presented their value proposition effectively and have addressed issues raised in a convincing manner. They have worked intensively with ITEN mentors to prepare their company’s investor presentations. The consensus among the Mock Angels is that these companies are adequately prepared to present their companies effectively to prospective investors.

You can find all of our graduates here: https://www.itenstl.org/mock-angel-program-graduates-new/

  • RoverTown Talking About Mock Angel Program?

  • The Importance of Due Diligence

    ITEN’s Mock Angels program not only prepares start-ups for pitching to investors, but it also educates founders on the due diligence process that they will encounter as they seek funding or enter into buy-sell agreements.  The focus of our due diligence review is to apply an appropriate amount of awareness of the company’s  financial, legal, tax, intellectual property, management, product, market, competition, and exit potential situations.

     

    ITEN’s due diligence committee consists of six members, includes two attorneys, and is chaired by Jane Vancil, one of ITEN’s EIRs.  The committee’s goals are 1) to identify areas that may be a concern to potential investors, 2) to help founders understand why there might be a concern, and 3) suggest alternatives for addressing concern.

     

    Every investor group has its own due diligence process that is designed to evaluate the company and that contributes significantly to informed decision making.  A well-received pitch may open the door to further discussions with an investment group, but no funding is released absent a thorough review of a company’s overall situation.  Results of a due diligence review enhance the amount and quality of information available to decision makers that they can then use to deliberate on the decision and all its costs, benefits, and risks.  It is not uncommon for a deal to dissolve based on unsatisfactory results of a due diligence review.

     

    The due diligence process will be a recurring activity throughout the life cycle of a company so it is imperative that a company’s management be familiar with, and confident in, the process. In the case of an exit, due diligence findings can impact a number of aspects of the transaction, including purchase price, negotiations of representations and warranties, and indemnification of liability by sellers.