The Business Angels Malta (BAM) network will be launched next Monday, the 2nd of December. This is the first investor network in the country and has been created with the help of the Early Stage Investing Launchpad. Angelo Dalli, an experienced investor, will be its first president. This new organization is aimed at connecting a selected few experienced investors who are interested and experienced in investing in start-ups, sharing investment opportunities with other Angel Investors, meeting other Angel Investors and learning more about investing.
Johan Zammit took the lead in creating this network. He is the founder and CEO of Smart Studios, an innovation & technology firm empowering top brands and emerging startups to design their future and to incorporate blockchain, AI and IOT in their products/services. He is also is the chair of the Malta Innovation Summit, the starting point in the creation of BAM.
“From discussing innovation at last year’s Malta Innovation Summit (October 2018), I understood that more needs to be done between startups and investors,” said Johan. Without thinking it twice he went into action, organising a specific event to link investors and start-ups.
In order to organise the first INVESTOR CONNECT event in Malta, Johan asked the ESIL Local Leaders Doreen and Paul, who both work at MIMCOL, the investment arm of the Maltese government, for help. “They explained to me their connection with the Early Stage Investing Launchpad and they offered to help bring startups to pitch and to provide one trainer for the investors,” said Johan. In pursuit of a common goal, they decided to partner and that’s how the first edition of the INVESTOR CONNECT was also the first ESIL Open Day in Malta.
INVESTOR CONNECT gathered 50 investors and 50 startups on the 9th of May 2019 in Malta. In addition to listening to the pitch of the entrepreneurs, the event was built with the aim of supporting meaningful cooperation amongst angel investors, corporate investors, family offices, high net worth individuals, or VCs in Malta. Anne Lebreton Wolf, a Paris based angel investor and ESIL trainer, shared her experience with participants and she also attended the closing meeting for investors.
The investors’ meeting was so stimulating that all the participants reached the same conclusion: “It was obvious that we had to start building a network and having regular meetings,” said Johan.
Since then, a group of 50 investors has met monthly at MIMCOL premises. “We created a non-profit organisation and we are preparing ourselves with relation to different aspects like how to do a due diligence, for example,” said Johan.
BAM's mission is to give angel investors the appropriate tools and environment to become better private investors. Every member will have access to:
- A constant stream of curated investment opportunities from Malta and internationally.
- Startup pitching, networking events and training sessions.
- Opportunities to co-invest with fellow investors who might be more knowledgeable in a certain field than you are
- The possibility to access training about how to improve the investment results
A source of knowledge and feedback
To aid the network creation process, BAM components can rely on the different didactic materials offered by ESIL in the Digital Academy, as well as actively participate in webinars and online e-pitches.
The Early Stage Investing Launchpad is an EU-funded initiative that connects networks of business angels and crowdfunders across Europe. For investors in Malta, it has been very helpful to have access to this network. “To be part of the ESIL community is key for us. It is where we go for everything. Thanks to this informal network we have answers for everything in the same place. It’s a great source of knowledge, feedback and collaboration,” said the Local Leader Paul Waltzing.
Written by Pablo Munilla for the Early Stage Investing Launchpad