9 Different Types of Investors for Startups

Stepping into the Startup arena? From visionary angels to corporate giants, different types of investors for startups are there according to stages of funding – that holds the key to your Startup’s growth.

Here in this article, let us discover the diverse form of investors and unravel the secrets to securing the perfect partnership for your entrepreneurial dreams.

Friends And Family

At the beginning stage of your Startup journey, even if the idea is viable, probably very few people show interest to invest in your business.

While some individuals or groups of people step forward to support you as first investors – Friends and Family. These initial Investors are also referred to as personal investors, who have trust in you even without any knowledge of the business.

Also Read Bootstrapping Guide For Startups

They are not like real investors who invest seasonally when you need money to develop your venture. Instead, they put on capital investment ranging modestly from $100 to $10000.

The money you get from them would be useful for developing a prototype or even a minimum-viable product.

Basically, friends and family won’t ask for a slice of your Startup in return on investment. Yet they’ll constantly support you through the process beyond financial aspects.

Most crucial thing while getting money from beloved ones is to be transparent with them

  • Inform them about any uncertainties or risks associated with your business. It gives respect. If not, your relationship may get spoiled.
  • Even though they are your friends and family, consider signing a contract that outlines the terms of the investment. 

This shows you’re treating their support seriously and underscores your commitment to your Startup’s success.

Bank Loans

Bank loans are not your typical investor in the Startup story, rather it comes in the form of debt financing that plays a significant role in fueling entrepreneurial dreams.

If you are eyeing a bank loan for your Startup, they would like to see a track record of revenue generation for at least a couple of years. And checks out your business’s financial history, evaluating if your venture has the potential to thrive.

Credit and Collateral Matters:

  • A solid credit score can open doors to more favourable loan terms, making your loan process smoother.
  • Banks demand any Collateral that gives the bank a safety net, in case things don’t go exactly as planned.

Other than loans banks offer credit cards or lines of credit for Startups. It helps in the form of a financial lifeline you can obtain when needed, like in case of financial emergencies.

The big advantage of choosing a loan option is there is no dilution of equity or ownership, and the founders will maintain a larger share of the company’s future profits.

Government Schemes

Governments always care for every industry and sector, because it aims to stimulate economic growth in a country.

Through its financial assistance programs and Schemes, the Government offers various types of loans to support Startups and small businesses, fostering entrepreneurship and job creation in the economy.

While the availability and terms of government loans can vary by location, country, federal systems and laws.

For example

Small Business Administration (SBA) in the US

In the United States, the Small Business Administration (SBA) emerges as a champion of Startups and small businesses offering financial backing, technical assistance, and access to resources.

Startup India in India

The Startup India initiative launched by the Government of India takes centre stage in the ecosystem.

The nation’s commitment to a comprehensive approach that encompasses funding, mentorship, and regulatory benefits encourages innovation and supports Startups that lead to economic transformation.

European Investment fund

European Investment Fund (EIF) stands as a beacon of Startup investment in Europe. Collaborating with financial intermediaries and Venture Capital firms, the EIF provides funding options for Startups from early-stage investments to growth financing.

British Business Bank

In the UK’s entrepreneurial landscape, British Business Bank plays a significant role in bolstering Startup growth with its diverse range of programs, including equity investments and loans.

Angel Investors

Angel Investors are visionary individuals, often seasoned professionals who support ambitious entrepreneurs who have innovative ideas. They play a significant role in shaping the investment that catalyses Startup success.

Angel Investors stand apart from traditional investors by operating at the intersection of seed fund and beyond like infusion of expertise, mentorship and valuable networking with Startups.

They actively participate in the venture with expertise and money in exchange for equity shares, which are worth sailing along with them.

Their support in the early stages helps Startups to refine their strategies, validate their concepts, and gather momentum to enter into the realm of Venture Capital.

Angel Investors are easily accessible for founders or entrepreneurs and you can attract them easily because their vision resonates with yours. By using online platforms and networking strategies you can directly pitch them without any geographical barriers.

Angel Groups

They are the group of Angel Investors in the industry which offers Startups the advantage of getting industry insights, and business opportunities.

Investment decisions are made collectively by members of the angel group. This process might involve due diligence, and discussions among the members which may take a long time but end up in potential business prospects.

Venture Capitalists 

Venture Capital investments are of different types, they could be either an individual or a firm helping early-stage Startups after they have laid the foundation through Seed Funds or Angel Investors.

They only invest in high-profit potential Startups that are destined to touch the sky. Their investment comes along with knowledge, resources and expertise in exchange for equity and authority. This could be both an advantage and a disadvantage for a company.

VCs are more influential in decision-making, ownership, and control, while these become vital components that put your firm on a growth trajectory.

The final word about VCs is – It’s a high-risk, high-reward partnership that fuels innovation leading to strong market dominance.

Corporate Investors

Many giant companies look to invest in Startups that acquire new markets by disruption. This comes as a collaborative effort that mutually benefits like co-development of products and accessing new markets.

Big companies like Microsoft, Google, and IBM are examples of corporate Investors. Out of these, some companies run their own programs like incubators or Accelerators.

As these Startups mature and grow, corporate investors can make way for acquisition or buyout. And that would be a good strategy for exit from a Startup perspective.

Incubators And Accelerators

Startup Incubators and Accelerators are the ultimate hub that acts as a School for Startup companies. You can directly apply for the mentorship program and If your idea is feasible they’ll be ready to invest and provide assistance.

Usually, it will take 3 months to 12 months or even more to complete the program. There you’ll get into the Startup community experiencing work culture with fellow entrepreneurs.

You’ll be offered co-working space to work with mentors, and industry experts that help to exchange your ideas with them. These Valuable insights will definitely make you transform in an effective way on your own.

As nothing comes free, these Incubators and Accelerators expect a nominal percentage as a share. After that, you’ll be introduced to a series of investors to scale your Startup.

This mentorship program allows Startups to undergo a thorough development process, and establish a stronger foundation before transitioning to the next phase.


Crowdfunding is the method of raising funds from more individuals or firms through a campaign. It involves like-minded entrepreneurs, Angel Investors and also VCs.

Obtaining this pool of funds from a large number of people is not easy because they won’t simply give money by trusting you.

It highly demands a tremendous effort in drafting a proper business plan that needs to be showcased with the viability of making profits in the future.

Some Special platforms for crowdfunding that are available for Startups are:

  • Kickstarter
  • Indiegogo
  • Fundable
  • StartEngine

Common types of crowdfunding are

  • Reward-Based Crowdfunding
  • Equity Crowdfunding
  • Debt Crowdfunding (Peer-to-Peer Lending)
  • Revenue-Based Crowdfunding

Also Read Understanding Crowdfunding Process

Why Startups Need Investors

Startups often seek investors for various reasons that can significantly impact their journey to become a successful venture.

This financial backing helps Startups get off the ground and navigate the initial stages of growth.

From the ideation process to the exit plan Startup need sufficient funds at different stages of growth – developing the product, operations, marketing, customer acquisition, scaling and expansion.

Not only money can fulfil the needs and necessities of running a successful Startup company. Besides that, many factors determine success or failure. Many risks and challenges may come across your path that may be prone to a Startup failure.

Investors share the financial risks, knowledge, resources and expertise associated with Startup ventures. Sharing the burden of financial challenges and uncertainties can put Startups in a safe zone.

Moreover, Access to Follow-On Funding is important, after getting Initial investment from investors. Thus it can attract subsequent rounds of funding from additional investors.

Choosing The Right Investors For Startup Funding – Factors to Look For

  1. Align with your Startup’s vision and goals.
  2. Possess industry-specific expertise.
  3. Offer a strong network and valuable connections.
  4. Provide more than just funding—mentorship and guidance.
  5. Match your Startup’s current stage of development.
  6. Share a compatible risk tolerance.
  7. The investment size meets your funding requirements.
  8. Align on exit strategies and future plans.
  9. Share similar values and cultural alignment.
  10. Review and agree on investment terms and conditions.
  11. Gather references and conduct due diligence.
  12. Commit to a long-term partnership for sustained growth.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Types of Investors for Startups

1. What is the role of investors in a Startup?

Investors provide funding and resources to help Startups grow, offering guidance, mentorship, and industry expertise.

2. How do angel investors differ from Venture Capitalists?

Angel investors are typically individuals who invest their own money, often in the early stages. Venture Capitalists are firms that pool funds to invest, usually in later stages, and often take a more active role.

3. Can Startups seek funding from multiple investor types simultaneously?

Yes, Startups can diversify their funding sources by engaging with different types of investors at various stages of growth.

4. What should Startups consider when choosing investors?

Startups should evaluate investor alignment with their vision, industry knowledge, network, and the value they bring beyond funding.

5. How does crowdfunding work for Startups?

Crowdfunding allows Startups to raise funds from a large number of individuals via online platforms, often offering rewards, equity, or products in return.

6. Are government schemes a viable option for Startup funding?

Yes, government programs like Startup India or the Small Business Administration (SBA) in the US offer support, grants, and incentives for Startups.

7. How do corporate investors benefit from investing in Startups?

Corporate investors gain access to innovation, market insights, strategic partnerships, and potential acquisition opportunities.

Summing Up

From angel investors who believe in your vision to Venture Capitalists who provide strategic guidance, each investor type brings unique value to the table.

Crowdfunding platforms open doors to the public, while government schemes and corporate investors provide additional support.

Whether it is about seeking funds, mentorship, or strategic alliances, making use of the option of investors can pave the way for your Startup to thrive and make its mark in the business world.

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