Despite High Startup Activity, Denver is Lacking in Angel Investors

The future is bright for innovation in Denver, but the Mile High City is still seeing a need for angel investors. According to the latest Kauffman Index statistics, the Denver Metro ranked No. 5 in the nation for startups in 2015, up three spots from the previous year. Despite the strong entrepreneurial activity, however, Denver hasn’t been drawing as many angel investors as expected. In fact, many entrepreneurs are having to go out of state to get capital.

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It’s a problem that the Lean Angel Workshop hopes to address May 17-18 at the co-working and educational space Galvanize. The workshop will include several segments addressing different aspects of angel investing, including segments on the “why” of investing, how to choose early-stage startups to invest in, and a segment on mentoring and networking.

The host of the workshop, Leslie Jump, founded the organization Startup Angels in 2013, which is dedicated to encouraging angel investing. In an interview with the Denver Business Journal, she explained that while there are 300,000 active angel investors in the U.S., there are 10 million people who meet the requirements to become an accredited investor. “They don’t know about it and how to get started,” she told the Denver Business Journal. “That’s what we are trying to do.”

There are several associations dedicated to angel investing in the Metro, including the Rockies Venture Club, which hosts the Angel Capital Summit in addition to monthly investor forums. Most of these events are targeted toward people who are already angel investors, rather than prospective angel investors who want to learn more.. If the issue lies in education, as Jump theorizes, then workshops like the Lean Angel Workshop should inspire more locals to take the leap and enter the world of investing, helping Denver entrepreneurship become even stronger in the process.

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