Minnesota Angel Tax Credit at the Half: Over 17 Early-Stage High Tech Ventures Are Fed $5.5m in Funding


masterpieceOnce again, legacy media has used the broad brush of sweeping generalizations to paint another sloppy picture of the funding activity in Minnesota’s startup community.

“But it’s one [ecosystem] that remains starved of oxygen — money. Until we get more investors chasing ideas in Minnesota…”  says the author, citing one startup’s tale that apparently represents an entire marketplace.

While it may be fair to suggest that money doesn’t chase entrepreneurial ideas around here,  the claim of starvation is patently false.  As we’ve consistently reported since day one (and recently summarized [2]), money does exist and it has a tendency of gravitating towards those ideas which are executed on.

As a counterbalance to the mainstream misinformation, we offer quantifiable evidence from one timely source that speaks to the contrary:  investor tax credits allocated through the first half of 2011 under Minnesota’s 25% angel investor tax credit program. This single source does not account for the numerous transactions conducted outside the scope of tax credits, nor unreported deals — such as a friends and family round — which usually happen when plans are still conceptual.

In preparation of our Q2 2011 capital recap, a snapshot of this data set shows over 17 different early-stage high tech companies (IT, SaaS, web, mobile, hardware, telecom) have raised at least $5.5m under the program since the turn of this year.  The average amount raised per tech company is $375k, and ten of the companies saw $100k or less (ie. seed). Most interestingly, when compared with the cross-sector aggregate data, 75 cents of every dollar invested through the credit has gone into early stage high tech.

Here’s a glimpse into most of the recipients:

Related, Dan Tenenbaum from Gray Plant Mooty sheds some light on how a state government shutdown would impact the Minnesota angel investment tax credit program and those who wish to participate.