On 19 November, Endeavor held the 5th workshop as part of the Dare to Scale Growth Program. The topic was Capital Raising and covered Venture Capital (VC) and Bank financing. The VC part of the three-hour workshop was given by Ivaylo Gospodinov, Managing Partner in Black Peak Capital and Rumyana Ivanova – Head of Small Business in Postbank – presented the Bank’s perspective in addressing start-up and scale-up companies’ capital needs.
Ivaylo began the session by focusing on the investor landscape in Bulgaria, where Black Peak was one of the first major players, and reflecting on the different viewpoints that investors and founders need to bridge in order to ultimately reach a deal that benefits both sides. From the investor perspective, Ivaylo stated that the presence of a talented and cohesive founding team as the most important factor when evaluating a potential investment opportunity. From the founder perspective, he believed that the strong focus that entrepreneurs put on valuation is an erroneous one and often corporate governance and deal structure are more important and can derail or foster a robust investor-investee relationship.
Ivaylo also shared a few best practices when it comes to Board of Directors: he mentioned that 5 to 7-people boards to be preferable and that protecting statutory rights of minority shareholders as key to exercising control over the company in the long term. He also advised entrepreneurs not to be frugal when it comes to spending money on external legal resources and gave tips on how to create leverage when talking to prospective investors. “Don’t forget that there is competition among investors too,” Ivaylo said.
In the second part of the workshop, Rumyana brought the banking perspective. She stressed the fact that banks historically and fundamentally take on significantly lower risk than venture capital firms and other investors when financing start-ups. She went on to describe the ideal client for their bank and highlighted the fact that trust is one of the main building blocks of a successful long-term partnership. Rumyana had shared a case with the D2S participants prior to the workshop and discussing it during the session served as a great insight into the inner works of managing risk in the banking institution.
The team of Endeavor Bulgaria together with the participants would like to thank Work & Share coworking space for hosting the workshop and congratulate Ivaylo and Rumyana for giving the session. The next workshop will take place on 3 December and will be with Kalin Radev, the CEO of Software Group and an Endeavor Board Member. The topic is Recruitment and Retention. Stay tuned!