Maybrooks Q&A with Karen Bairley Kruger — Counselor, Property Manager and Pipeline Fellowship alumna
1. Tell us about Pipeline Fellowship and its mission. Pipeline Fellowship is an angel investing training program for women. The program requires a commitment of approximately two days a month over a period of six months as Fellows learn the basics of angel investing. The mission of Pipeline Fellowship is to bring more women forward as investors so they can ultimately fund more women-founded businesses.
2. Why is bringing more women to the table from an investor perspective important?
Bringing more women to the table is critical from an investor perspective because women are hugely underrepresented in all sectors of business–from entrepreneurs to CEOs to board membership. Statistics have shown that women investors are more likely to invest in female entrepreneurs, and that female entrepreneurs are more likely to have women represented on their boards and in leadership positions within the company. Gender diversity brings more perspectives, which leads to more innovative products and better overall success.
3. What do women who go through the Fellowship program learn about?
Pipeline Fellows learn how to structure a deal with an entrepreneur and are walked through the steps by expert investors. The training includes analyzing a company’s business and marketing plan, determining a company’s valuation, conducting due diligence, interpreting term sheets, negotiating investor rights, as well as portfolio strategies and how to measure social impact. Fellows also learn how to collaborate with each other, as only one company is selected for the collective investment.
Pipeline Fellowship is an excellent opportunity for a woman in a career or life transition because the education provided is multi-faceted: it lays the groundwork for a career in angel investing and it allows women to examine their values and take a closer look at the social causes that are most meaningful to them.
5. Pipeline costs money for the participants. Why is this a good investment?
The expense to participate in Pipeline Fellowship is a worthwhile investment in itself. At the end of the program, women have learned the ropes of angel investing and they have actually made their first angel investment. Fellows also graduate having made connections with other angels, with established mentors in the investment field, and with a large network of ambitious, female social entrepreneurs.
6. How does angel investing make for a flexible career?
Angel investing makes for a flexible career because there is choice in the amount of time and involvement that one commits. Some angels choose to invest in several companies per year, others just one or none at all. For a woman or a mother looking for meaningful work that can be tailored to her own schedule, angel investing could be the perfect fit.
Karen Bairley Kruger is a School Counselor and self-employed Property Manager who has been consumed over the past 10 years finding humor in small details while raising four children. Karen participated in the 2013 Bay Area Pipeline Fellowship program. Read her full bio here.
*This is a sponsored post.