Plains Angels, a Des Moines-based angel investment group, announced this week that its members invested $2,425,000 in seven startup companies last year. The total marks their highest year yet since founding in 2012.
The seven companies are: Naiku, Iowa Approach, Igor, ClusterFlunk, Men’s Style Lab, Peppermint Energy and Pear Deck, which just won Steve Case’s Rise of the Rest competition at SXSW.
The angel investor group has already become a rally point for capital investment in the Greater Des Moines area.
Local venture capital firms Next Level Ventures and CMA Ventures benefit from the ability to discover area startup companies that could benefit from investment and not only made initial investments in many of the companies, but also made add-on investments after the initial investment.
“Next Level Ventures is happy to be an active participant in Plains Angels. We find it extremely beneficial in keeping our fingers on the pulse of what is happening in early stage investing in Iowa,” said Craig Ibsen, Managing Principal of Next Level Ventures.
“We look at Plains Angels as a forum to both source exciting investment opportunities and network with active investors in the state.”
“CMA Ventures finds it valuable to have partners like Plains Angels. Plains Angels brings potential deals to the forefront and helps local startup companies foster and grow,” said Terry Sullivan, Vice President Chief Financial Officer of Central Iowa Power Cooperative, which owns CMA Ventures.
“Plains Angels is another great piece of the puzzle in building up the entrepreneurial scene in Iowa. We are proud to be a partner with Plains Angels and a part of the entrepreneurial ecosystem.”
Plains Angels are currently seeking more pitches from entrepreneurs.
“To continue to build this ecosystem, we need more entrepreneurs to apply to pitch to the Plains Angels investors. This is a great opportunity to show potential investors what your startup company has to offer,” said Mike Colwell, Executive Director of Entrepreneurial Initiatives at the Greater Des Moines Partnership and co-leader of Plains Angels.
Plains Angels was started in 2012 and is an initiative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.
In 2014 Plains Angels launched a second group in Iowa City/Cedar Rapids, led by Eric Engleman, CEO of Geonetric and the founder of the Iowa Startup Accelerator.
For more information about Plains Angels and their companies, go to www.plainsangels.com.