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Super Angels

A fairly recently trend has been the emergence of what has become known as “super angels,” which refers to an individual or group of individuals, who unlike traditional venture capitalists, will broadly place more money in a larger number of early-stage startups, some who are yet to even generate revenue. Some Super Angels also have begun to raise their own funds by pooling money from institutions or other angels. These are structured in ways that resemble venture capital firms, i.e. general partners and limited partners, but generally they are smaller (<$50 million) and may take smaller fees. Some people refer to Super Angels as Micro Venture Capital Funds as well.

Super angels are perhaps less risk-averse than traditional venture capitalists but also provide less money (up to $500,000) to more recipients. They remain in it for returns but by investing in many more angel investments, they can diversify their risk. In some cases, super angels raise their own funds from limited partners.

“Super angels still aim for billion-dollar exits, but their model doesn’t hinge on home runs,” wrote Spencer E. Ante in a May 2009 Business Week article on the subject. “Instead, they can profit by hitting singles and doubles and reducing their strikeouts.”