Re: Investment club vs. Angel Groups

Brian Atkins (
Thu, 12 Aug 1999 23:36:48 -0400

Sorry to quote it all, but it sounds to me like what you want is an Extropic Analyst to provide strong buy recommendations :-)

See as a model

No need really for a whole group to try to make these decisions. (something else I learned from the angel group is that it is exceedingly rare for every member of the group to want to invest in a particular startup)

If multiple people are interested you could have multiple analysts.

I think by far the best approach would be to include a spot in the upcoming Extropian web site for stock discussion, just like the format of other stock discussion sites.

"Robert J. Bradbury" wrote:
> > Brian Atkins <> wrote:
> > I was not at Extro4, so perhaps you got some tips on companies
> > in need of funding.
> Only from the perspective of the Geron & Kronos presentations.
> Geron is currently public, Kronos is not.
> > That is the big problem with forming an angel group- finding the
> > companies.
> I wasn't thinking of an Extropian Angel Group per se. I doubt
> that collectively as a group we have the resources for this type
> of thing. (To do this properly you have to have a capital pool
> of millions of dollars.) I was thinking more along the lines
> of an Investment Advisory group (club) to review and recomend
> Extropian investments. Examples of this would be Geron and
> Alteon which are at very different stages of development but
> since they are working on pro-longevity biotech, they would
> be the type of investments we might want to pursue.
> My main rationale for this is to see if it is possible to
> create a counter-trend to the market emphasis on short-term
> ROI. The volatility in the markets favors the big players
> and not the small investors. The ra-ra Internet stock
> enthusiasm creates a bad climate for biotech startups
> that have much longer development cycles. If one always
> goes for the short-term, high-ROI investments, that means
> the slow-to-develop plays (nanotech, anti-aging research,
> etc.) will always get left out. So one either has to
> rely on government funding (which many people in this group
> intensely dislike) or wait a long time until the foundation
> technologies develop to the point where the idea development
> is done by many people simultaneously (presumably lowering
> the profit margins and ROIs).
> While I would not argue that one should put all of ones
> investment portfolio into ExI/Foresight compatible investments,
> it could be that a collection of individuals with a long term
> focus, could invest some percentage (10-20%?) of their investment
> dollars into these types of investments with the assumption of
> really long term payoffs as well as providing some economic
> stability for corporate "management". I know that I
> (as say the president of a biotech company), would be
> much more comfortable pursuing a long term strategy
> if I knew that some fraction of my shares were being
> held by investors that were not going to read every
> quarterly report with the intent to sell at the first
> hint of bad news or difficulties.
> > By the time you see a real press release from a company,
> > they are probably past the angel stage and into the big VC money
> > (past where we might want to invest).
> I would disagree. If you are looking for a big short-term
> "payoff" then you want to play the Angel game. But the big
> payoff has associated risks. I'm looking more for the
> approach that if you believe a company has a fundamentally
> sound long-term strategy but one that will not sell well
> given current mindsets or short-term ROI focus, then you
> want to invest for the long term. Essentially, these
> would be the type of investments you would want to fill
> your portfolio with if you had to undergo Cryonic suspension.
> The "buy em & forget about em" investments.
> > You have to be able to meet the management team and really
> > question them before you will have enough confidence to invest.
> While this is always true, it is less of a problem if the company
> is already "public". For example, if Zyvex ever went public,
> I would certainly be one to accumulate that stock on any
> market "softness". I know the management, I believe in
> and want to support the work and if they are successful, I think
> I would make a lot of money. What we need is a "short list"
> of 10-20 companies like that that we "know" will ultimately
> be successful if they survive long enough. You need a number
> of companies to distribute the risk.
> Robert

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