I was invited to be involved in a discussion this week about being entrepreneur with a bend towards the food space. The event was put on by 85 Broads, a global womens network that truly reaches far and wide. There were easily over 100 women in the room. The conversation was not only about investing but the desire to take the leap into starting your own business without anything but your passion and idea.
We are living in a time that I called start-up nation. It is not just the tech community where start-ups are being built but the food industry, the consumer products space, education, healthcare, bio-tech, fashion, arts…you name it. I do believe we will look back at this time and say it is the time when everything changed.
30 years ago there might have been a few angel investors that were family and friends but basically angels investing was not a household word. There are now angel investors in every different industry. I meet people who are only investing in tech and others that are only interested in consumer products and those who are only interested in something to do with food. The banks are no longer supplying the cash, people are. There crowd-funding options from Kickstarter to Circle-up and I believe as entrepreneurs are disrupting industries with new ideas and start-ups entrepreneurs are also disrupting the funding models with crowd-funding sites.
What was amazing to me last night was the amount of women who stood in line to talk to me. Everyone of them had either a business that they had launched, an idea or a desire to invest in deals. It is inspiring to see so many people out there pursuing their dreams and starting their own companies. Of course some will succeed, others will fail but that is life. The fact that we can start companies out of our basements with not a lot but an idea is really one of the most amazing things about this country.
I am part of a community who is trying to supporting these entrepreneurs in a variety of different ways. If you think about it I bet that most people are one degree of separation from someone who is trying to start a company or has an idea that they are working on. I really do believe we are living in a start-up nation.