SELECTION CRITERIA

OVERVIEW

E8 has an exclusive focus on early-stage businesses with promising clean technology or sustainability innovations. Our portfolio companies are run by entrepreneurs who share E8's mission of preventing and mitigating the impacts of climate change while profitably creating a cleaner and healthier planet. 

E8 members invest in companies who are headquartered anywhere in the US and Canada, yet whose products may be sought and sold across the globe.

TYPES OF INVESTMENTS

Our members typically expect an equity stake in return for their early-stage engagement, at terms commensurate with the high risk they are assuming.  E8 welcomes companies with ‘chiseled-in-stone’ term sheets but is also experienced in leading early stage rounds.

Innovative revenue-sharing equity deals are an intriguing means of returning funds to the investor from companies who may in time become a strong cash-producing business long before they are optimized for an exit.  

E8 members are receptive to other investment vehicles under the correct circumstances.  We have accepted convertible note bridge rounds, for instance, when they offered reasonable discounts, caps, and a credible path for closing the qualifying financing round.

 

Asset-backed debt vehicles and project financing are also of interest.  For instance, E8 members have provided debt funding for the implementation of renewable energy, energy efficiency, and green building projects. These projects may not hold the promise of traditional angel level equity returns, but have strong revenue projections and a clear environmental impact.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTION TO PRESENT

When evaluating which companies will be selected to present to E8, we consider first and foremost your alignment with our mission and your potential for positive impact.

We then turn, like most angel investors, to the following attributes:

  • compelling customer value proposition that can profitably solve a real-world problem

  • differentiating technology, service, process, or model that can be monetized and made scalable

  • defensible competitive advantage, including registered patents and/or other barriers to competition

  • clear understanding of your go-to-market strategy and proof of market desirability and timing

  • traction against goals, such as pilot programs, letters of intent, or customer purchases

  • proven and committed management team with relevant skills and demonstrated resiliency 

  • credible and balanced business plan which includes key execution milestones that would be  realistically achievable with the proceeds from this round

  • if your company will require additional financing rounds, we would want to see evidence that it will be attractive to subsequent funders based on achievement of the milestones funded in this round

  • clear and documented understanding of the competitive landscape

  • understanding of your key risks and a plan to mitigate them

  • clear path to profitability.

  • market(s) large enough for your company to generate a minimum of $20 to $30 million in annual revenues (based on a reasonable market share) within 3-5 years and a reasonable possibility of venture-scale returns for investors

  • reasonable valuation (generally $750K to $1.5M for seed stage companies, generally $1M – $7M for early-stage)

  • net funding need for the current round that is typically in the $250K – $1M range, and typically does not exceed $3 - $5 Million

  • realistic exit strategy for investors

WHAT TO INCLUDE IN THE PITCH DECK

There are as many excellent ways to pitch your company as there are entrepreneurs. In general, investors are drawn to compelling stories of how your product or service will positively impact the environment and accelerate the transition to a cleaner and healthier economy. Passionate entrepreneurs who have a clear understanding of customers and their real-world needs and have built a skilled team committed to their mission stand apart.

A quick search online will lead you to many excellent sources of information on how to create a pithy and compelling pitch, along with examples of successful pitch decks.

A few good places to take you beyond the basics of 'Why this? Why now? Why you? Why would I want to come along for the ride?' include:

       "What Makes a Great Application Great?"

 

LEVERAGING OUR COLLECTIVE KNOWLEDGE

The members of E8 are value-added investors, providing both capital and expertise to help cleantech entrepreneurs succeed.  Our goal is to aid the companies in which we invest to become highly impactful and profitable for both management and investors.

If your company is ready for our investment and our involvement, we welcome your application to present.

CLEANTECH INVESTING FOR A PROSPEROUS, SUSTAINABLE WORLD
 

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