VisionTech Angels aspires to be among the top angel investing groups in the country. Today’s announcement that we’re among the first five angel groups to earn certification from the Angel Capital Association (ACA)—which has more than 300 angel group members—as an Established Angel Group (EAG) signals that we’re well on our way.
The EAG certification program addresses new rules from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that allow entrepreneurs to generally submit or advertise their investment offerings as long as they take reasonable steps to verify that their investors are accredited investors. An individual accredited investor must have a net worth of at least $1 million (not including primary residence) or an annual income of at least $200,000. Many attorneys have endorsed the new certification as a reasonable verification process in generally solicited offerings, rather than requiring investors to provide financial documentation to issuers or third party verifiers.
EAG certification is like a “Good Housekeeping Seal” for angel investing groups and a way for entrepreneurs to more easily address securities regulations. It means that companies that pitch to VisionTech Angels can do so with confidence that our group is composed of accredited investors as defined by the SEC.
VisionTech Angels is in good company. Other ACA Established Angel Groups are Sierra Angels in Nevada, Hyde Park Angels, Chicago; Cherrystone Angel Group, Providence, R.I.; and Alliance of Angels, Seattle.
We had to meet stringent criteria to earn EAG certification. This included proving that our purpose is to invest in early-stage companies, that our members are accredited investors, are aware of the risks associated with investing in early-stage companies and are thoroughly vetted before becoming members; that our group adheres to an established code of conduct and has a formal deal/investment process; and we have a process for members to affirm accredited investor status no less than annually.
Securing ACA certification was of utmost importance to VisionTech Angels. We want to set the standards for building successful companies, and that includes engaging qualified investors, ensuring a strong deal flow, conducting thorough due diligence, educating investors and startups, and collaborating with universities, the business community and other investment groups. Operating at this higher level, with the ACA’s resources behind us, allows VisionTech Angels to be our best and also the first angel group people call.