32 Ways to find Foreign Investors for Business

Foreign Investors for Business: You may have a great idea and the confidence to know it will eventually take off and be profitable.

But you need some start-up capital to get it off the ground.

Traditional banks and small business loans can be an option, but they can be difficult to get.

Most small businesses get off the ground with financial assistance from family and friends.

If you have a tech idea or groundbreaking invention, you may be able to find professional investors willing to fund you.

If you plan on building your business in a neighborhood that’s struggling economically.

You may be able to use a government program.

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Foreign Investors for Business:: BusinessHAB.com

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1. Foreign Investors for Business

If you want to start a small business or expand an existing one.

Then you’ll need to find money.

One option is to bring on investors.

There are many potential investors out there.

However, you need to identify which ones will invest in your business.

And then put together a compelling presentation.

When you meet with investors, remember to answer questions with confidence.

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2. Ask small business groups.

You might not know where to begin. It’s probably best to start close to home.

Meet with other small business owners or stop into your local Chamber of Commerce.

Ask if they know of investors for your business.

3. Contact the Small Business Administration (SBA).

In the country, the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) program helps small businesses find investors.

Over $21 billion of capital has been channeled through this program.

Each SBIC is privately owned. However, they are licensed and regulated by the SBA.

  • You can find the SBIC directory here: https://www.sba.gov/sbic/financing-your-small-business/directory-sbic-licensees.
  • For purposes of the SBIC program, a small business generally has a net worth of less than #18 million and net income of #6 million or less.
  • Furthermore, some business are prohibited from participating in the program.

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Foreign Investors for Business

4. Find a local incubator or accelerator.

These organizations help start-ups turn their ideas into a real business, and they provide funding as well.

You can find an incubator or accelerator near you by using the National Business Incubation Association’s directory listing.

  • Generally, incubators help start-ups or new businesses.
  • While accelerators help already-established businesses grow faster.
  • Incubators might not provide investments directly.
  • However, they can help connect you to potential investors.

5. Look at online crowdfunding.

You can reach investors worldwide by using an online crowdfunding site, such as Equity.net.

These websites give you access to hundreds of investors.

Who can help you finalize your business plan and grow your business.

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6. Remember family and friends.

People who know you might invest in your business.

Especially since they can see your drive and determination.

Remember to approach them as you would any other investor.

  • Friends and family will want some return on their investment, just like other investors.
  • However, you might be more flexible in what you can offer.
  • For example, instead of making them part-owners, you might want to provide them with free goods or services in return.
  • You also should think about asking people you know for a loan instead of for an investment.
  • With a loan, you don’t have to give up any ownership in your business.
  • Also, if your business fails, you can wipe out a loan in bankruptcy.

7. Drum up interest on social media.

Any social media accounts you have can be used to help you find investors.

Set up business-specific pages and accounts.

And encourage friends and family to connect to them and share them on their networks.

  • Use posts not only to talk about your idea but also demonstrate the need for the product or service you want to offer.
  • Include news and information about the neighborhood where you want your business to be located.
  • Encourage your friends and followers to share posts about your business and help you spread the word.

Foreign Investors for Business

8. Hire a business capital broker.

These brokers have networks of potential investors that they can contact.

You can find a business capital broker online.

Or by talking to other businesses that might have used a broker.

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9. Consider if venture capital is right for you.

Venture capital is a term used to describe a variety of investors.

Including private equity firms, venture capital firms, and angel investors.

Although different, they share similarities:

  • They take big risks for potential big financial rewards.
  • Accordingly, venture capital usually invests in industries with large growth potential, such as technology or biomedicine.
  • Very few businesses qualify for venture capital financing.
  • They are actively involved in your business. For example, they will probably demand a seat on your board in exchange for investment capital. However, they often are experienced in your industry and can help you grow.
  • They have a longer investment horizon than other forms of financing.

Foreign Investors for Business

10. Find venture capital investors.

Look online at websites such as Angel Capital Association, Angel Investment Network, and Funded.com. 

Investors use these sites to find businesses to invest in.

  • The Angel Capital Association has a directory listing accredited investors.
  • You can search by region or state. 
  • Links are provided so that you can visit the investor’s website to learn more about them.

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11. Run the numbers.

You need to know how much money you’re after.

If you need a small amount, you might only seek out one investor.

However, if you need a lot of capital, then you’ll need to know that as well.

Calculate how much money you need for your small business.

  • Also consider how much of your equity you are willing to give up in return.
  • Investors don’t give loans. Instead, they take a share of ownership in exchange for money.
  • You’ll need to come up with something reasonable.
  • For example, if your business is worth #100,000 and you want #25,000, then you’ll need to give up around 25% of the business’ equity.

12. Update your business plan.

Your investors will want to see your business plan.

Which you should have already created if you are an existing business.

The plan will identify your market, competitors, and include financial projections for five years.

  • Update the financial information so that it is current.
  • You should also bulk up the executive summary to your plan.
  • Investors often will skip other parts but focus on the summary, so spend extra time on it.
  • Make the business plan colorful and include graphics so that the information is easy to digest.

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13. Research the investor.

You need to know whether a potential investor will be interested in your business.

Many investors focus on only certain industries.

So you’ll save yourself time if you figure out ahead of time their focus.

  • Look online to check what businesses they have invested in.
  • Look at their LinkedIn profile to see if you know people in common.
  • If so, ask whether the investor might be interested in your business.

Foreign Investors for Business

14. Ask for a meeting.

There’s no one way to reach out to an investor.

If someone recommended the investor to you, then mention the recommender’s name in your email or when you call.

Alternately, you can send your email to the recommender.

And they can then forward it on to the investor.

  • In the body of your email, clearly communicate what you do.
  • Mention the age of your business. Are you a start-up? Have you been in business for ten years?
  • Identify any other investors you have worked with. For example, an investor might have given you start-up funds five years ago.
  • Provide dates when you are willing to meet. Try to be as flexible as possible.
  • Proofread your email so that it looks professional.
  • Attach something to show the investor your business.
  • For example, you might create a short video that shows your products or services.

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15. Know your story.

Investors aren’t only investing in a business.

They are also investing in a person—you.

Accordingly, they’ll want to know stuff about you.

You need to be able to explain the following:

  • What about your background has led you to this point?
  • How have you benefited from your previous business experience.
  • Be prepared to point to specific achievements.

16. Prepare for common questions.

You can’t anticipate in advance everything a potential investor will ask you.

However, there are some common questions you should think through:

  • What has been the biggest mistake you’ve made in your business?
  • How are your competitors outperforming you? Why?
  • Is anything working against your business, e.g., new regulations, demographic changes, etc.?
  • Why are you seeking funding?
  • What are your long-term growth plans? How do you intend to get there?

Foreign Investors for Business

17. Get help from a Small Business Development Center.

Your nearest SBDC can help you pull together a business plan, find potential investors.

And prepare for meeting with investors.

Contact the nearest SBDC and schedule an appointment.

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18. Make a memorable presentation.

You’ll probably make a presentation to investors, which can take many forms.

For example, you might make a PowerPoint presentation or create a booklet for the investor to flip through.

With other investors, you’ll simply sit and talk.

Whatever form your presentation takes, it’s important not to simply repeat the contents of your business plan.

  • Yes, the investor wants to understand your financials, which is why you have a business plan handy for them to take and read. However, it doesn’t hurt to get creative.
  • Show the investor your product or service. If you are expanding a pastry business, have an assortment of pastries with you. If you provide a service, then you can create a short video that shows your business in action. You need to give the investor a concrete idea of what your business does.
  • Remember that pictures are more memorable than words. If you create a PowerPoint, don’t fill it up with text.

19. Be brief.

Your presentation shouldn’t take more than 20 minutes.

If you use a PowerPoint, then it shouldn’t have more than 15 slides.

 Practice your presentation until you it is the right length.

Foreign Investors for Business

20. Ask for advice at the first meeting.

Don’t dive right in and ask for money.

A potential investor needs time to mull over your business idea before they can decide whether they want to invest.

Accordingly, you should spend the first meeting tapping the investor’s business knowledge.

  • However, you can subtly work money into the discussion.
  • For example, you can say in an offhand manner, “I’ve been thinking I’d need #130,000 to open a new store in that location, but I’d like to hear from you if there are hidden costs you’ve found in your experience…”

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21. Be honest.

An investor won’t cut a check until they perform due diligence.

They’ll want to take a closer look at your business financials.

And they will uncover any misrepresentation you make.

Always be honest in your business plan and in your conversations with potential investors.

  • Admit when you don’t know an answer. 
  • An investor will appreciate your honesty.
  • If you lie to one investor, then they will talk to others in their community.
  • You’ll get a bad name and not be able to find any investors.

22. Project confidence.

Potential investors want to see that you have faith in your business.

Avoid being arrogant, which shows that you are insecure. 

Instead, project quiet confidence in the following ways:

  • Listen. Insecure people chatter all the time and laugh awkwardly to fill up silence.
  • Be prepared to listen.
  • Stand up straight. Put your shoulders back when you sit and stand.
  • Make eye contact when talking and listening to someone.
  • Avoid fidgeting.

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Foreign Investors for Business

23. Remember to ask the investor questions.

Any investor will take an ownership stake in your business.

Accordingly, you’ll need to vet them as well.

Ask the following questions before agreeing to work with someone:

  • What other projects are they investing in?
  • Check whether or not they are similar to your business, or whether they are in different industries.
  • When was their last investment? If the investor hasn’t been investing in a while, they may not be serious.
  • How do they plan to increase your company’s value?
  • What factors will you consider before deciding to invest?
  • How active do they want to be in the business? Does the investor want a seat on the board, handle day-to-day operations, etc.?

24. Follow up with the investor.

After a first meeting, thank the investor by sending them an email.

It’s unlikely that they’ll agree to invest after only one meeting.

So you want to keep the doors of communication open.

A short, professional “thank you” email can do the trick.

  • You can also keep the investor updated on the progress of your business.
  • For example, if you were rolling out a new product, let them know how it is going.

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25. Stay professional if rejected.

It’s hard to tell why people choose not to invest in businesses.

You might not have been a right fit, or they might have already chosen to invest in a similar business.

Regardless of the reason, you can control how you respond.

Stay professional and thank them for their time.

  • Remember that you might run into the investor later down the road, when they are more willing to invest in you. There’s no reason to burn bridges right now.

Foreign Investors for Business

26. Keep trying.

Avoid being discouraged if you don’t get many offers.

Or if every presentation you give results in a rejection.

You probably haven’t found the right investor yet. 

Keep searching, because the perfect investor may still be out there.

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27. Research investors thoroughly.

Especially if you’re strapped for cash.

You may want to jump at the first offer that comes your way.

However, your investors will have a hand in your business.

It’s worth taking the time to get to know them.

  • Find out as much as you can about their investment track record.
  • If they’ve previously invested in other companies, see how those companies are performing today.
  • The best investors for you will be people who have experience in your industry. For example, if you have an idea for a mobile app, it isn’t necessary that your investors are computer engineers, but they should at least have a basic understanding of how your app works and what it does.
  • Based on your research, you should be able to come up with a list of 20 or 30 investors you can focus on.

28. Check out online angel investor networks.

Online networks, such as AngelList, do more than connect you with private investors.

These websites also have educational resources that can help you build your business plan and market your idea.

  • Craft your profile carefully and share your page with family and friends to gain possible connections.

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29. Focus on selling yourself.

Selling your product or service to an investor is only part of the equation.

You also must convince them that you’re the person to run the project and get it off the ground.

  • Think about why you are uniquely suited to develop the project.
  • It needs to be something beyond the fact that you came up with the idea.
  • Highlight related personal and professional experiences that give you insight into the project that no other person could have.

Foreign Investors for Business

30. Identify what makes your idea unique.

Especially if you’re trying to enter a relatively saturated market.

You must be able to differentiate yourself from the competition.

Be prepared to show potential investors what your product or service offers that your competitors don’t.

  • One way to do this is to focus on a particular niche that is relatively untapped.
  • This could be a target location or a particular demographic.

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31. Learn to handle rejection well.

When you first start looking for investors, you’ll likely hear no far more often than you hear yes.

Just because you weren’t the right fit for a particular investor doesn’t mean your idea isn’t any good.

  • If investors provide any reasons as to why they aren’t willing to invest.
  • Take that feedback seriously and see if you can make any improvements in either your project or your pitch based on that.

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Foreign Investors for Business

32. Look for a local incubator.

An incubator or facilitator is a business designed to help develop and grow start-ups.

Incubators are particularly common in the tech industry.

Investors may take on a more hands-on, mentoring approach.

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