Investment Best Practices From Screening to Closing a Deal

NECEC’s Investor and Corporate Partner Readiness Webinar Series #2

In the second installment of Cleantech Navigate Northeast’s Investor and Corporate Partner Readiness Webinar Series, “Investment Best Practices From Screening to Closing a Deal,” which aired on December 5, 2017, our speakers explored the best practices of an investment deal from the perspectives of both startups and investors. Moderator Eric Macaux, Energy Project Finance Attorney at Mintz Levin, delved into an investment case study with Aster Capital Managing Partner Jean-Marc Bally, and Digital Lumens CEO Tom Pincince.

Aster Capital is a half billion dollar fund focused on energy and mobility. It is funded by strategic global corporate firms. With global reach (offices in Paris, San Francisco, and Tel Aviv) and 17-year track record, it has made 50 investments to date, including an investment in Boston-based Digital Lumens, a developer and provider of intelligent LED lighting systems that leverage the power of connected lighting, IoT sensors, and software to deliver business intelligence.

During this webinar, Digital Lumens’ Pincince revealed that if a startup has the opportunity to choose from a series of offers from investors, it needs to consider intangibles related to the investor beyond the ability to provide capital. Some of these intangibles include:

  • Do they have a strategic view of the marketplace?
  • Do they have access to connections that could complement the startup’s team?
  • Do they have good customer contacts that can provide insight?
  • Do they have beneficial company builders?

When Digital Lumens considered investors, they sought an international fund that allowed them to tap new perspectives and markets, according to Pincince. At the end of the day, his team focused on whether there is  additional value beyond the investment made when making the decision.

Bally noted that what sets Aster Capital apart is that they are a platform VC, a business development accelerator and a business hub. “We help our companies connect with the right partners, the right clients, and the right support. We choose companies for their ability to grow, however, we do take into account our portfolio companies and our investors, and analyze the possibility of leveraging partnerships to spark growth,” he said.

Aster Capital and Digital Lumens’ partnership is the perfect example of a successful investment deal.  Whether you are an entrepreneur or an investor, be sure to watch the full webinar for more tips and best practices. And to view recordings of all the webinars in the series, check out our playlist here.

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Daniel Goez

Daniel is NECEC's fall 2017 Graduate Intern.