Entrepreneurs

Eligibility & Application Process

To be eligible to apply, the company should be located in the Mid-Atlantic region (we give preference to companies in Maryland, D.C., Virginia, or Delaware). A complete application must be submitted, which includes an Executive Summary (1 page length) and Investor Pitch. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Please review our detailed Investment Criteria page, but generally you should apply when:

  • Seeking capital in one of the following ranges:
    • $100K to $1M in Series A Preferred Stock or Convertible note
    • $1M+ with lead investor and term sheet
  • Have a fully-developed product or service offering
  • Have a current sales pipeline & revenue stream
  • Can demonstrate that the business is likely to grow rapidly, is scalable and has sufficient untapped market potential
  • Have developed and tested a sales/marketing strategy with defendable market differentiation
  • The company addresses a high-growth market (20% CAGR minimum) or a large market ($500mm+) with a demonstrated strategy to obtain market share
  • Pre-money valuation expectations are less than $5M

Self-Assessment

Before submitting your application for our consideration, you must determine if angel capital - and specifically capital from our group - is right is for your company. Please review our investment criteria and current portfolio companies to evaluate that fit.

Meeting Date

Application Deadline

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Friday, August 1, 2014

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Wednesday, October 11, 2014

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Friday, May 1, 2015

Step 1: Submit Application

Dingman Center Angels accepts applications through Gust. There is a $75 application fee payable by credit card at the time of application. To apply, please follow this link: Dingman Center Angels Application.

We apologize for imposing an application fee as we are philosophically against charging fees to entrepreneurs. However, without this nominal fee, we would be inundated with hundreds of non-legitimate applications per week and would struggle to separate out quality applications. In addition, our process will result in actionable feedback and insight that will prove helpful for business development and in other investor meetings. This application fee is the only fee we charge throughout our process. We encourage you to network with one of our members to get a warm introduction to our organization.

Step 2: Pre-Screening

Following an initial screening of your application materials by our team, we will send you an email to inform you of whether your application has been advanced to a phone screening.

Step 3: Phone Screen & Coaching

Selected companies present their investor pitch via conference call. The Dingman Center Angels team conducts due diligence of the product, financial plan and business team and then provides actionable feedback. Through this rigorous coaching process, our goal is to prepare you to successfully meet investors throughout the region.

Step 4: Review Committee

After reviewing your materials, our internal committee will determine if your idea could be of interest to our members. If you succeed, you will be invited to present to our Review Committee which includes Dingman Center Entrepreneurs-in-Residence and select angel investors. These coaches are professionals who have experience in raising capital across many industries and will provide real-time feedback on content and delivery. Be prepared to deliver a ten minute investor presentation followed by in depth questioning and advice. We usually look at 5-6 presentations during this meeting and devote close to 1 hr on discussing the investment merits and the concerns on each business opportunity. After the meeting each presenter is notified on the results from the Review Committee and receives feedback. Normally, 3-4 of the candidates receive an invitation to present their business opportunity to our full membership.

Step 5: Presentation to Full Membership

Following the Review Committee a select few companies will be invited to present to our full membership. Invited entrepreneurs deliver their presentation at a formal Dingman Center Angels Investor Breakfast event, held the second Wednesday of each month from September to June. Entrepreneurs will deliver a 10 minute presentation and address questions for an additional 10 minutes. The objective is to make the investors excited just enough to want to learn more about your business - in a subsequent due diligence meeting (should there be any interest) you will have the chance to go into the details of your business with no time limit. After all the presentations, we excuse the entrepreneurs and have an extensive discussion on each business opportunity. The investors express their interest by filling out indications of interest forms which are then compiled and sent to the entrepreneurs for their following up.

Step 6: Investor Follow-Up

Our investors make their own decisions about which companies, and how much, to invest. They lead their own due diligence and negotiations with the company. Investors with a mutual interest in a particular company may collaborate to perform due diligence, provide feedback and/or pursue an investment in a company. Investors may choose to directly contact an entrepreneur or request facilitation of a meeting through the Dingman Center.

Step 7: Dingman Center Connectivity

After presenting to Dingman Center Angels, you will be part of our Community of Entrepreneurs. If you so choose to be involved, this will provide you with opportunities get connected with the various activities of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship. We also ask presenting companies to keep connected with the Dingman Center so we can update our investors on your company’s progress and milestones.

Concerned About Disclosure?

The Dingman Center Angels does not sign Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs). This is a common apprehension for most entrepreneurs. However, most professionals and venture capitalists will NOT sign an NDA until a time later in the due diligence process. A company presenting to Dingman Center Angels, or to any private or institutional investors outside of Dingman Center Angels, should prepare its business plan and presentation in such a way that its secrets are not fully revealed. Most ideas which entrepreneurs are afraid to disclose have to do with scientific or technical details. Entrepreneurs need to realize that investors are not concerned about such details in the first or second meeting. What they are concerned about is: the market need; the cure for the need; the demonstration of a large and growing market; validation of product or service viability; and the management team and its capability to execute the business plan.