17 May Angel network introduces ePlan
Madison, Wis. – The Wisconsin Angel Network, hoping to add another dimension to investment presentations, has launched its new ePlan system to enable companies to use rich media technology to make video presentations for would-be investors.
The ePlan, which uses Mediasite technology from Sonic Foundry, is designed to help companies reach more investors with less effort and expense. For about the cost of an airplane ticket, businesses seeking angel funding can make a 15-minute video presentation and transmit it via e-mail or compact disc.
Joe Kremer, director of the Wisconsin Angel Network, said the ePlan has been in the works for several years. He said it would eliminate the need for entrepreneurs to waste precious financial resources on get-to-know-you meetings “that end up going nowhere.”
“The concept behind it really was how can you reach out to investors, particularly ones that you haven’t met, so that you can try to infuse them with a bit of your personality and excitement about your business,” Kremer said. “It’s really hard, through a business plan, just the printed word, to get somebody excited.”
Kremer said ePlan, which is available for $495, is designed to allow entrepreneurs to maximize their time, and enable investors to view a video overview of prospective investments at their convenience. After the initial video presentation, he said companies will be able to pre-screen investors and devote their resources to investors with the highest interest level and potential.
Moreover, with a pre-recorded ePlan video, entrepreneurs can be more confident that they are putting their best foot forward.
Kremer said WAN has purchased two versions of the enabling technology, one for a studio at the office of the Wisconsin Technology Council, and another that is mobile and can be brought out to sites in a suitcase. In addition to the 15-minute presentation, users can record a shorter, one or two-minute “elevator pitch.”
Lorrie Heinemann, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions, said ePlan would give investors a real feel for the businessperson. With investors and early-stage companies so geographically dispersed, she said, “it’s a great way for investors to have entrepreneurs give their elevator pitch.”