It's "ALL" About The Exit : Ariel Angels Views and Issues
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It's "ALL" About The Exit

by Lesley Francis on 09/26/13



We are excited about our recent exit, the sale of our group’s investments in Advanced Liquid Logic (ALL), a North Carolina company specializing in “lab on a chip diagnostics” technology.  ASAP supported three investment rounds in 2007, 2008, and 2009.


 ALL is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Illumina Inc., a San Diego based, NASDAQ listed company with revenues in excess of $1 billion and over 2,500 employees.  Way to go Angels!


The beauty of our member-focused investment group is that we follow a network model.  This means we carefully screen deals and members then each decide individually to invest or not in each deal.  As many of us are NOT scientists, we relied on other members who first form a screening group and then a due diligence group that understand both the business and technical aspects of ALL’s business plan.  ALL sold to Illumina in order to further develop its innovative technology which “electrically segments and manipulates small droplets within a sealed disposable cartridge to perform complex laboratory test protocols on fluids such as blood, sewage, water, chemicals and solutions”.  ALL was attractive to Illumina for the development of their next generation gene sequencing. Not exactly eighth grade science!

So while every deal is different, what do the Ariel Southeast Angel Partners look for in their screening and due diligence processes before recommending to our members for voting and potential investment?  Important considerations include:


·        We often invest in early rounds for startups where the potential return is higher

·        Angels invest in people - i.e. the management team, and key players, and not just the concept or business strategies

·        ASAP is willing to lend guidance and expertise but is generally not involved   in the detailed overseeing of management teams and activities

·        Our rigorous due diligence process often provides great insights to the entrepreneur and allows them to return for follow on investment at a later time as their business model progresses

·        Angel investment groups can syndicate a deal where a VC group generally wants to take the whole deal portion;  we can ‘spread the risk’

It is true that there is a possibility for failure as with any investment – particularly in early stage businesses.  However our track record, even with the economic downtown of recent years, speaks for itself and we are eagerly awaiting the next exit from one of our other 18 portfolio companies as we screen the new kids on the block.

ASAP is not only interesting and potentially rewarding, but it’s a great way to meet movers and shakers in the Coastal Empire.  Contact us if you would like to hear more about membership!

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