World Business Angels Investment Forum Guest Editorial

The World Business Angels Investment Forum (WBAF) is an international organisation aiming to ease access to finance for businesses from start up to scale up, with the ultimate goal of generating more jobs and more social justice worldwide. It is committed to collaborating globally to empower world economic development by creating innovative financial instruments for innovators, startups, and SMEs.

The Forum interacts with leaders in all areas of society, first and foremost in business and political spheres, to help assess needs and establish goals, bearing in mind that the public interest is of paramount importance. WBAF engages a wide range of institutions, both public and private, local and international, commercial and academic to help shape the global agenda.

As a global organisation, the World Business Angels Investment Forum is bringing together key players of the equity market to discuss the benefits of and the challenges to the angel investment community’s achieving successful growth for their businesses and to discuss what more can be done to connect the early-stage market ecosystem.

Family offices and wealth management institutions are booming globally. Internationally recognised reports indicate that there are more than 10,000 single-family offices in operation throughout the world, at least half of which have been established in the past 15 years. A family should normally be worth between $100 million and $500 million for a single-family office to be financially viable. Multi-family offices, by contrast, offer affordable services for ultra-high net worth families with assets of approximately $50 million. In North America alone, the next three decades will see nearly $30 trillion in assets transferred from baby boomers to their heirs.

Angel investment too is booming worldwide. More than 90% of the early-stage investments in Europe come from angel investor capital. The angel investment market size is more than €6.7 billion in Europe and more than US$26 billion in the US and Canada. The total size of the world’s early-stage investment market is expected to exceed $50 billion by 2020. The $50 billion market for angel investment promises a $150 billion exit in the next 5 to 7 years.

SMEs, entrepreneurs and start-ups: OECD reports show that more than 96% of the world’s economy is driven by SMEs, entrepreneurs and start-ups. Many governments have understood the importance of the early-stage investment market in the creation of new jobs and social justice in their countries and have therefore implemented new regulations that provide tax incentives for angel investors, corporate ventures and start-ups.

The global leaders in early-stage investment markets — family office managers, wealth management executives, stock exchange executives, financial experts, policymakers, academics, active members of early-stage investment markets, bank executives and WBAF delegates — will come together to create new ways for start-ups, high-growth businesses, scale-ups, SMEs and angel investors to access finance.

WBAF 2018

Building on the success of the 2017 World Business Angels Investment Forum (WBAF), this year’s forum will focus on the theme ‘Unlocking the Potential for Innovation: Angel Investors Partnering with Family Offices and Wealth Management Institutions’. On 19–20 February 2018, WBAF will meet in Istanbul to shape the global agenda of the early-stage equity markets of the world.

The discussions will explore how family offices and wealth management institutions can foster open innovation and deliver more business value through partnerships with angel investors, start-ups, scale-ups, high-growth businesses and SMEs.

Baybars Altuntas

Entrepreneurship and innovation guru, global leader, best-selling author, angel investor, columnist, star of the Turkish version of the television show Dragons’ Den, Chairman of the World Business Angels Investment Forum (WBAF), Vice President of the European Trade Association for Business Angels, Seed Funds, and Early Stage Market Players (EBAN), President of the Business Angels Association of Turkey (TBAA), the World Entrepreneurship Forum Ambassador to Turkey and the Balkan countries, and President of Deulcom International. One of the top global speakers on entrepreneurship, innovation and angel investment invited by former US President Obama to speak at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Kenya. Read full Bio


For more information please visit the WBAF website