• WisBusiness

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

 8:59 AM 

Study Says Angel Investment Growing in Wisconsin

While Wisconsin ranks in the middle of the 50-state pack by some investment indicators, its supply of angel capital is growing, according to a report commissioned by the Wisconsin Technology Council.

``Risk Capital in Wisconsin: A Progress Report'' is the last of four updates on the Tech Council's 2002 report, "Vision 2020: A Model Wisconsin Economy,'' which set goals for the growth of the state's tech economy.

The report is being released this morning during the annual BIO convention in Chicago, where a large Wisconsin delegation is attending.

The report by NorthStar Economics, Inc., in Madison charted three pockets of angel investing:

--Wisconsin's angel networks invested nearly $5.6 million in 20 deals involving start-up companies in 2005, up from nine deals totaled $3.4 million in 2004. Total network deals (19) in all of 2002 and 2003 were $3.2 million.

--Data reported to the Wisconsin Department of Commerce due to the enactment of a statewide tax credit program for early-stage investments revealed 40 deals worth $15.5 million in 2005. Less than $2 million of that total overlapped with the network deals.

--Data voluntarily reported by six private law firms to the Wisconsin Angel Network, a project of the Tech Council, revealed $66.6 million in 43 individual deals. This was the first time such data has been available in Wisconsin.

Discounting overlap between the angel network deals and the Commerce data, total investing activity from those two sources alone was $19.6 million. Even if there was a complete overlap in individual angel investment data between the Commerce data and the data collected by WAN, individual angel investing activity in Wisconsin exceeded $51 million in 2005.

Combined with the network investments, that's more than $56 million in angel investing. That compares to $69 million in venture capital investments in Wisconsin during the same period.

--Wisconsin continues to lag in venture capital investments, but its angel capital performance is impressive,'' Tech Council President Tom Still said. ``Today's angel capital investments are helping to build companies that could attract tomorrow's venture capital investments.''

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