• Profile picture of Lighthouse Labs

    Lighthouse Labs is a non-profit, mentor-driven startup acceleration program connecting promising founders with proven mentors, investors, support services, working space and lean startup education to move from idea to viable high growth venture in three months.

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4

  • Profile picture of Center for Innovative Technology (CIT)

    CIT accelerates the next generation of technology and technology companies through commercialization, capital formation, market development and revenue generation services.

    Sector(s): Information and Communication Technologies

    VIRAL Level(s): 5

  • Profile picture of Activation Capital VA Bio Tech Park
  • Profile picture of 757 Accelerate
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  • Profile picture of Adasel Global Partners LLC
  • Profile picture of Darkblade Systems

    Darkblade Systems invests in products and services that have operational capability for the Federal and Local Government markets.

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 4, 6, 7, 8

  • Profile picture of spitehouse
  • Profile picture of Tech Center Research Park

    Tech Center is a 100-acre, mixed-use development in Newport News. By promoting the growth of a creative-minded community, Tech Center will become a place to collaborate, exchange ideas and encourage high-tech entrepreneurship.

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

  • Profile picture of Hawthorne Capital LLC
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  • Profile picture of NRV

    NRV is an early stage growth fund focused on Series A-ready companies scaling in the healthcare/healthy lifestyles space, as well as technology solutions that democratize entrenched industries.

    Sector(s): Education, Financial Services, Health, Information and Communication Technologies, Other

    VIRAL Level(s): 7

  • Profile picture of Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

  • Profile picture of Middleland Capital - VTC Innovation Fund

    Sector(s): Agriculture, Health

    VIRAL Level(s): 4

  • Profile picture of Pacific West
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  • Profile picture of Belle Isle Craft Spirits

    VIRAL Level(s): 5

  • Profile picture of CAV Angels
  • Profile picture of Community Investment Collaborative
  • Profile picture of The Launch Place

    The Launch Place is the lead entrepreneurship development organization in Southern Virginia. The company's mission is to retain, recruit and develop emerging and serial entrepreneurs in the region. The Launch Place provides pre-seed and seed stage equity investments, business consulting, mentoring/training/coaching services, office and residential space subsidies and office space to its portfolio companies. The Launch Place helps businesses with their business planning, funding, launching and growing needs. The Launch Place Pre-Seed and Seed Fund invest in innovative start-up opportunities.The Launch Place Seed Fund looks for investment opportunities in which our capital can serve as a critical catalyst to specific milestone achievement, whether it is follow-on capital, first customer(s), or another significant breakthrough in the company’s growth. Our Fund’s capital can be first money for companies seeking angel and other equity-based investors, and in some instances, our capital can act as an accelerator for companies needing more limited capital to launch. Therefore, we have the flexibility to structure deals as debt, convertible debt or equity. The typical range of investments made in the portfolio companies ranges from $200,000 to $250,000 per company, with a possibility for an additional $100,000 bridge. The Pre-Seed Investment Fund helps innovative entrepreneurs expedite the early stages of their start-up development process. Start-up companies may secure a maximum investment of $25,000 for product and market validation, and $50,000 for business model refinement. Once the companies achieve all the milestones required by the Pre-Seed Fund, they may apply for additional funding to the Seed Fund. We can be a lead investor in an investment round, or can follow other funds or angel networks. We syndicate with other seed funds and angel networks throughout the Southeast.

    Sector(s): Agriculture, Energy, Health

    VIRAL Level(s): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

VIRAL Level 5: Solidifying the Business Model

You’ve got a revenue model in place and are making money.

Your team has strong sales and operations capability and you’re actively building a strategy to bring down your customer acquisition costs.

What investors at this stage are likely to like about your business:

  • Your business model.

    You’re making money and beginning to grow your customer base. You’re building increasing evidence through sales that you’re solving a significant problem in the market and that you’re differentiated enough that people are paying you for your solution.

  • Your product.

    You’ve nailed user experience in your product – it’s easy to use and your customers are continuing to use it.  Your team has a deep understanding of the customer’s pain points, what features need to be improved, and have a product roadmap to address those concerns.

  • Your sales/distribution strategy.

    You’re in promising conversations with potential partners for sales and distribution to take your product to market at scale. You might even have such partnership in place already, and it’s important to emphasize this to investors as it’s what enables you to beat your competition in gaining market share.

What investors at this stage are likely to ask questions about:

  • Customer base:

    Investors will want to see that you can move beyond early adopters to a larger customer base. When do you think your sales will start mapping to projections and what’s your strategy to get there?

  • Customer Acquisition cost:

    While you’ve thought about how to reduce cost of acquiring new customers, what are you actively doing to bring this cost down? What’s your marketing strategy to move away from push sales to pull?

  • Regulatory/IP Challenges :

    What’s your strategy for protecting your IP (if applicable) and regulatory hurdles?

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active 6 months, 3 weeks ago