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100+ Ways to Get Startup Capital

100+ ways to get startup capital. A West Virginia entrepreneur's toolkit

OVERVIEW

West Virginia’s startup culture is on the cusp of something big. With recent fast-paced, coordinated and opportunistic action, West Virginia is flipping the script on how it will develop its economic opportunity.

In order to find sustainable pathways for business growth, entrepreneurs must consider what type of capital best suits each stage of business development. This guide offers 100 ways a West Virginia entrepreneur can find the necessary capital to help achieve success.

By leveraging the startup and investment expertise of WV Forward partners, this guide offers a starting point and an at-a-glance overview of capital resources to help West Virginia innovators navigate funding options for their businesses.

By spotting gaps in capital sources and lighting up national trends like social impact investing and opportunity zone funds, WV Forward aims to add value to the state’s startup community.

METHODOLOGY

This guide is not comprehensive and only draws from publicly available information. The capital resources do not include common traditional lenders like banks nor venture capital firms that would generally encourage relocation to their area. Finally, this list focuses only on direct funding sources that would support for-profit entities in West Virginia.

A 2019 version of this toolkit will include entrepreneurial assistance programs located across the state. Additions or edits can be submitted by emailing wvforward@mail.wvu.edu

CONSIDERING YOUR CAPITAL OPTIONS

For entrepreneurs making initial financing plans for operations, it’s common to consider: “What capital sources are available to support my business venture or product?”

  • Grants are an advantageous early form of money, which requires simply time in preparing a good application.
  • Equity investors will take an ownership stake in a company in exchange for helping it grow more rapidly.
  • Debt options help further finance growth, at a cost, without giving up further ownership.

CAPITAL FOR PRE-REVENUE COMPANIES

These types of companies are early in formation and may not have any sales so far. Not having revenue to report does not indicate current or potential company value, however only certain capital providers are willing to fund a pre-revenue company. Grants and equity investors are the likely capital sources available for this stage of company.

CAPITAL FOR REVENUE-GENERATING COMPANIES

Once a company can show a real revenue stream, additional capital sources open up. Debt becomes a financing option—payments are expected to begin immediately, which is why revenue is generally required. Additional classes of equity investors and grant opportunities open up as traction is shown over time.

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*Citations available upon request.