Small Business: Angel investors - Pat MacFie

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Pat MacFie, co-founder of ONsport and a partner at Socialize Group, on his recent experience pitching to angel investors at The Icehouse for ONSport where he managed to attract two new investors. The ONSport site launches in February

Pat MacFie, co-founder of ONsport.
Pat MacFie, co-founder of ONsport.

Tell me about your business, its growth and your aspirations.

We're all about helping professional athletes and sports teams make money from their social media activity in a really scalable way. Paid tweets and social media sponsorship deals are ad hoc at best. Our goal is provide our customers with a way to make money from every tweet or post and every member of their community. As for our aspirations, we're solving a massive problem so it's fair to say that our goal is of a similar scale, to build a sports media business of global significance.

Why did you attend the NZ Angel Investment Showcase at the Icehouse recently? What sort of feedback did you receive?

We're looking for smart money, not just any old investment, we want investors that come with global networks and domain expertise. That's why the Icehouse showcase appealed, with 250 angels and investors at one event.

What do investors like about your business? What especially appeals to them?

Two things, the scalability of our business model and the fact that we're solving a really big problem that's particularly relevant to the current era of the social web.

As you start to look for external investment, what sort of information are you preparing to give to investors?

This is the second time I've lead a capital raise, but the first time I've been through the process for my own business. We're an early stage business, so have really focused a big part of our information and offer, around market validation that we've completed thus far which has been pretty compelling. Going forward into negotiations it's going to be about due diligence and milestones on this round of investment.

What will you do with angel investment?

We'd spend the money on business development, basically signing up athletes, teams and ad partners.

How would you describe the funding environment at the moment in New Zealand?

Better than it's ever been really. You have a group of experienced angels and investors now in NZ that are very committed to investing in the high growth start-up space. I personally would like to see them get a few more exits and success stories to build greater momentum and higher levels of interest in the sector, especially amongst the very large group of Kiwis that are focused on residential property currently.


Next week: A while back, I looked at companies set up by men and women who had set up new businesses after their main careers. I recently profiled a young company founder who started up his company straight out of university. He had already been taking on work, so why not? I'd like to hear from young things of 25 and under and hear what you are achieving. Lack of experience can be a good thing. Perhaps you are braver.

- NZ Herald

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