Early-stage companies constitute a distinct, attractive and important asset class in which everyone should participate, either actively or through the professional services of others. Our twin fiduciary mandates are for simultaneous maximum financial return and positive social impact. Distinguishing features of our firm include 1. track record of 5.5x return on capital from exited investments made in the past eleven years, 2. deep technical knowledge plus investing experience on the core team, 3. unmatched global network and partners for early-stage deal flow, and 4. eclectic mix of positive-impact investments, especially in the fields of health/wellness and sustainability (think energy, materials and climate change), plus a smattering of others. The classical "doing good while doing well".
The Early-Stage Asset Class
Early-stage companies represent an asset class differentiated from traditional later-stage Venture Capital (VC) and other assets in the following ways:
- High (25-30%/yr) rates of historical average financial return (in recognition of inherent risk, for essentially creating value from nothing)
- Minimal correlation with other major asset classes (thus good for portfolio diversification)
- Highly innovative and impactful (thus making a real difference in the world)
- Source of most net new jobs, value creation, etc. (thus economically important)
- Often lacking established financials, revenues, etc. (thus needing a different investment approach)
Why ECS Capital Partners
ECS Capital Partners was formed to address the following general problems with early-stage investing:
- Democratizing and Broadening Participation. Most people and institutions legally qualified and allowed to participate do not do so, because they lack the requisite time, experience, knowledge, connections, etc. Simply put, it is easy to dabble (and too many do) and lose money, but consistent and rewarding participation in this asset class is hard and generally requires an experienced and professional approach. We provide a mechanism through which to participate in this asset class easily, professionally and effectively, to the benefit of the investors themselves, the entrepreneurs supported and society in general. Under present law, tax-sheltered retirement accounts of Accredited Investors are eligible to invest in this asset class, and through much experience we can advise regarding the choice of an independent retirement custodian. A further attractive possibility is for parents or grandparents to establish an account, that will grow substantially, for the benefit of their descendants. Potential clients in this category might include successful business owners or executives, professionals such as pilots, doctors or dentists, attorneys or accountants, professors, engineers, etc., all of whom devote most of their time and effort to their own careers but still desire the returns and other benefits of investing in this asset class.
- Improving Angel Investing. Active Angel investors and their groups typically provide the first outside money to support early-stage enterprises, but are usually focused in geographic scope and limited in the requisite financial resources to participate effectively in later rounds. We provide globally diversified deal flow and additional financial resources to allow continuing investment into the most successful companies, thus protecting and ultimately harvesting the greatest returns from Angel investments.
- Providing Family Offices, High Net Worth Individuals, Institutions, etc., with well-curated and proven early-stage deal flow. Such deep-pocketed players have more than adequate financial resources, but usually lack the means to sift through and identify the most promising early-stage opportunities among the very numerous, non-transparent and global universe of start-ups. We provide a regular and reliable flow of de-risked, well-understood and flourishing early-stage companies for individual co-investment consideration in specific later rounds.
Differentiation of ECS Capital Partners
While addressing the above-described general problems with early-stage investing, and seeking market-competitive investment returns, ECS Capital Partners is distinctive in the following ways:
- All of our investments are in companies promising positive social impact (i.e. addressing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs). Thus, we do not participate in verticals perhaps popular and profitable but devoted primarily to consumer convenience, consumption or entertainment, or producing what we consider negative social impact. Our two most significant areas of activity are health (devices, diagnostics, therapeutics, nutrition, lifestyle, etc.) and sustainability (clean and renewable energy, materials, recycling, etc.), with minor sectors in food, agriculture, culture, finance, education, space, etc.
- We focus on enterprises based, and are ourselves well versed, in sophisticated (deep) science and technology. Such enterprises lend themselves to substantial scaling, impact and investment returns, and have built-in as well as legal competitive protections.
- Our initial deal flow comes from the global Angel, Venture, incubator, accelerator and university ecosystems, professional and technical interactions and relationships, etc., and we collaborate and co-invest with numerous partner firms, family offices and institutions. (In other words, we represent a very broad and diversified set of channels, partners and relationships.)
- An innovative evergreen structure allows very flexible and individualized account management and decision-making.
- We are aware of and utilize, to the maximum extent possible, the favorable tax treatments afforded to investments in this asset class because of their generally recognized social and economic development importance.
Who We Are
- Managing Partner Charles Sidman, MBA, PhD, is experienced in both information science and biomedicine, having been an early computer entrepreneur and a tenured Medical School professor and researcher. His training includes private university (Harvard), public university (University of Cincinnati) and research institute (Santa Fe Institute) experience.
- With over 20 years of investment experience, we offer:
- Positive investment track record
- Founding and continuing membership in the (American) Angel Capital Association, with equivalent participation globally
- Leadership advocacy for the American JOBS Act of 2012
- Ongoing involvement in US investment and retirement policymaking
- A multi-generational family business, itself serving other families
Please note that the above is not an offer to sell - potential investors should contact ECS Capital Partners, LLC, via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) for additional information, pitch deck, etc.
For some interviews, presentations or other materials (newest at bottom) about ECS Capital Partners and our approach to the target asset class: