Jason Whitney of IU Ventures joins Nick to discuss University-Affiliated Funds & Angel Networks. In this episode, we cover:
- Backstory/path to venture
- At IU you have 3 core initiatives - The Quarry, IU Venture Fund and the IU Angel Network. What's the focus of each?
- Talk about the investment focus for the IU Philanthropic Fund.
- What're the criteria to be eligible for funding?
- How does IU Ventures support the University's mission? How does it affect or benefit current students?
- As a broader goal, I know the organization ultimately hopes to entice investors and entrepreneurs from around the country to return to Indiana as a result of participating in the network. Are you measuring this and are your efforts working thus far?
- So, a criticism of both university venture funds and angel groups is speed -- traditional angel groups and academia move slowly with investment decisions. How do you combat that issue for founders raising on a tight timeline, trying to close a round?
- I was speaking with a university-affiliated investor just last week and he was saying, there's just not enough deal flow when you restrict investments to companies that have a specific university affiliation... do you agree/disagree?
- I've heard from a number of the Alumni Ventures Groups in recent years -- there are folks leading funds and angel groups with alumni from a particular university... are you a part of this effort and what's your impression of the Alumni Ventures Groups?
- Let's talk more about the IU Angel Network. How do you go about becoming a member? What do you gain access to as a member?
- Aside from the university affiliation, which is appealing to many, what advantages and points of differentiation does IU Angels have vs. other angel groups?
- For the founders out there... why should they fight to get IU Ventures and/or IU Angels on their cap table -- how specifically are you driving success beyond that of other investors?
- Advice for investors?
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