With 6 exits under our belt, we decided to take a look back to when we first saw the companies and the founders that made these exits possible. We set out to find some common patterns that may associate with an exit, so we can use these to inform future investment strategy. These are the top 6 insights from our 6 exits:
- Female founders– Across our six exits there were 11 founders and out of those, 7 were women (64%). In fact, every startup had either a female founder or was solely founded by a woman. This shows the value created by investing in women-led businesses.
- Early exits– Currently, a startup exits on average 4 years and 7 months after funds are invested. This is slightly earlier than the 5 to 7 year exit window expected. In fact, our earliest exit was completed within 3 years and 7 months of the investment.
- Not so early-stage– We found that companies were on average 18 months old before we invested. This reflects our investment strategy to invest after a product is completed. Although we are an early-stage investor, 18 months seems to be the time it takes for an idea to materialize into a product and for us to invest.
- Higher Education – We found that almost all founders had a bachelor’s degree or a higher qualification. When that was not the case there was at least one co-founder with a degree.
- The single founder conundrum– The majority of exits were companies headed by more than one founder as it takes varied skill sets to drive a business to an exit.
- Marketing and FinTech – These sectors were the most common ones. This reflects the wider investment trend around Fintech over the past couple of years. Additionally, because we are not solely a tech investorwe are able to invest in companies traditional VCs wouldn’t, specifically in the Marketing space.
*Out of the 99 companies we have invested in over 7 years 34 are no longer trading, of the 16 EIS investments made to date 1 is no longer trading.