" The fund considers Maine based companies in almost all industry sectors, though the return potential of the investment must be high enough to justify the risk taken. "
The SEGF is a Maine-based fund that focuses exclusively on investing in promising growth companies. The fund considers Maine based companies in almost all industry sectors, though the return potential of the investment must be high enough to justify the risk taken. A company must meet the following threshold criteria in order to be considered for an investment from the SEGF:
- Employ 50 or fewer people or have gross sales of $5,000,000 or less within the past 12 months
- Provide evidence of the need for financial assistance to realize its projected growth and achievement of public benefit
- Demonstrate a co-investment in an amount at least equal to the investment amount sought from the SEGF
The SEGF considers each company and investment opportunity on an individual basis. Similar to all venture capital funds, the SEGF is looking for companies that display the following characteristics:
Experienced Management Team
The SEGF invests in managers who are capable, determined, and persistent. In addition, the fund seeks managers who have a proven ability to build and manage a business in an industry relevant to the opportunity.
Unique Product in a Strong Market
In order to grow at the rate necessary to produce venture capital-type returns, companies generally need to have unique or innovative technologies or services that put them well ahead of the competition, or that can make significant changes in their industries. In addition, the market has to be big enough to offer the necessary growth potential and attractive exit opportunities.
Compelling Value Proposition
The company’s product meets a demonstrated need in the market. In other words, customers are anxious for the product. The product solves a common problem or “pain point” in the industry.
Scalable Business Model
The SEGF invests in scalable business models with high gross margins. A scalable business model is one where a company can make a product once, but sell it many times.
Clear & Realistic Exit Strategy
Making an investment is only the beginning of the relationship between the SEGF and a company in which the fund invests. All shareholders should have a common goal to grow the business for eventual sale, merger, public offering of shares, or re-capitalization. Therefore, the SEGF looks for companies that have the potential for these kinds of “liquidity events”.