Charles Sidman – ECS Capital Partners Guest Editorial


ECS Capital Partners (ECS-CP) is a fund that invests in a wide range of enterprises from early-stage Angel start-ups to later Venture-stage or even public growth companies, focusing completely on investor returns (Internal Rate of Return).  Some of its core premises are that start-up and growth-stage equity represents an important and distinct asset class belonging in everyone’s portfolio for reasons of diversification and return, and that such young companies are the economy’s true creators of value and share important evaluation and management characteristics regardless of particular financing mechanism.  Additional features of the fund include a hybrid model combining the active individual investor involvement of Angel investing with passive participation through professional management and support, impactful results not by sacrificing financial returns but as a means to same, lack of restriction to any particular geography, sector, stage or financing mechanism, sufficient resources to allow follow-on investments as warranted, focus on the human factors and involvement so important for success even after a promising initial investment, and broad and respectful collaboration, deal flow and interaction with all other players in the global entrepreneurial ecosystem.

ECS-CP was started and is managed by Charles Sidman, MBA, PhD, an American who worked for five years in Switzerland and has travelled and interacted professionally in over half of the countries of Europe (as well as elsewhere).  Dr. Sidman’s background includes over 50 years of experience as an entrepreneur (in computers, biomedicine and the arts) and academic (as a researcher and teacher in biological sciences, business and ethics), and founding membership in the American Angel Capital Association.  ECS-CP is a proud member and regular participant in EBAN.

Two current initiatives of ECS-CP and Dr. Sidman are active advocacy of broader access for everyone (not just the most financially privileged) to the asset class of early-stage entrepreneurial finance (he was a founding leader of the Crowdfunding movement, and continues active participation in legislative, regulatory and educational fora worldwide), and the inclusion of ethical awareness and impact in the investing endeavor.

Like everyone in this necessarily high-risk but also high-return sector, he has had his share of complete wipe-outs and losses, but on balance is positive in terms of financial returns, having had successes including 10x profits ranging from early-stage Angel investments to publicly traded securities.