Looking for Investment
Over the past two years my ed-tech startup, EdConnective, has come a long way. From an idea in the shower to business plans in graduate school, development of the product, securing initial users, and on to first customers, each milestone was hard fought. My Wharton Venture Initiation Program mentor Jeffrey Babin once reminded me after the first sale to take a minute to pat myself on the back because fewer and fewer startups make it to each successive milepost. Now, the venture is at yet another critical juncture: initial investment.
Since beginning this startup journey, I’ve entertained the idea of seeking investment numerous times. Initially, I was against investment for social enterprises such as EdConnective, fearing the investment would poison the impact. Two years later, my views on investment have matured. Now, I see it for what it is: a tool. As a founder, it’s up to me to make sure the social impact of the venture remains central to the mission of the company. Meanwhile, I now recognize investment as a powerful resource that can help an organization both survive and thrive.
With a new school year on the horizon, opportunities are blossoming left and right for EdConnective. Two nationwide education organizations and a school of education are interested in collaborating. A school is expanding its demand for our services from a few teachers to the entire staff. Several other schools will be using our professional development support in the fall. A seasoned and respected school leader is about to join our team full time, bringing a tremendous amount of value to the endeavor. In short, it’s time to scale up, and investment will help fuel that growth and impact.
Incredible progress was made this past school year for EdConnective. The company completed one ed-tech incubator and one ed-tech accelerator. We provided 200 observations and 6,000 minutes of feedback to teachers across six states. Students have changed their behaviors for the better and teachers have been empowered with new strategies. Meanwhile, all of this was accomplished on a shoestring budget while I also worked a part-time job at the College of William and Mary. As EdConnective positions itself to scale, I must be able to run this company full time, preferably with at least one full-time team member who can expand our capacity to serve more schools. Presenting at conferences, getting exposure, and executing a high-caliber solution requires capital.
We’re looking to raise $100,000 in Angel Investment. We already have $50,000 committed, and are actively searching for the other half of the funding. EdConnective is fortunate to receive the support of an incubator and accelerator that are providing invaluable guidance during the raise process. They are both investing their own capital and connecting me to other sources of capital. Meanwhile, I am trying platforms like startup fundraising site AngelList and FundingPost to expand the reach of the ask. Everyone says, “raising investment is tough” and they are right. This process is really challenging. Nevertheless, EdConnective will keep blazing a trail forward. We will hit this milestone as we have all of the rest.
- Finding the Technical Know-How to Build Your Great Startup Ideal
- Education Business Plan Competitions: Crafting the Perfect Pitch
- How Educators Directly Influence Ed-Tech Investment
- The Word ‘No’ Holds Power for Ed-Tech Startup Entrepreneurs
For more information visit @edconnective on Twitter.