Durham Newcomer Qodeo Is A ‘Dating App’ Matching Entrepreneurs To Investors – GrepBeat

Qodeo’s CEO Simon Glass is a Brit by birth and the startup has a presence in London and New York. Now it’s also setting up shop in Durham for its platform that caters to traders and investors.

If you’ve been in any part of an investment, you know firsthand how difficult it can be to find the right partner. Durham newcomer Qodeo is helping investors and entrepreneurs skip “kissing frogs” to build healthy, long-lasting investment relationships.

A long-time consultant, former investment banker and Brit by birth, founder and CEO Simon Glass started Qodeo to solve a problem: faced with an overload of information and limited resources, investors often invest only within their network. By working with people like them, investors are missing out on valuable deals and valuable diversity.

“Let’s say you are an investor; when you go to the same alma mater, there’s an automatic connection you can’t deny,” Glass said. “But by that fact, you’re taking most of your deal flow from a narrow network. That means two things: it means you’re not looking, and you’re not providing an opportunity for, different entrepreneurs. People who didn’t go to Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge, or MIT can’t see, in many cases, because you don’t know where to start.

Research has found that investing in more diverse companies builds more profitable portfolios than investing only in companies within your “trusted” network. By casting a wider net and expanding investment opportunities from “trusted networks” to “indirect trusted networks,” investors can profit from better investments. Qodeo built that “indirect trusted network,” thereby “democratizing” fundraising opportunities.

Now Qodeo, which already has a presence in London and New York, is also setting up shop in Durham. [Editor’s Note: The startup is also sponsoring GrepBeat’s Happy Hour on Thursday, Nov. 17, at Durham’s Bull McCabe’s, where all entrepreneur attendees will get 50% off Qodeo Concierge, and one lucky trivia winner will score a free year of Concierge (saving $99-$240).]

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Qodeo’s platform helps traders and investors looking for a good match to avoid kissing too many frogs in the process.

Think of Qodeo like a dating app for venture capital or private equity investment. When a trader or investor is on the platform, Qodeo’s algorithm facilitates “matches” with investors rated “Hot,” “Warm” and “Cool.” Like a dating app, entrepreneurs or investors can reach out once they’ve been “matched,” ensuring entrepreneurs that the companies they’re reaching out to are actually good fits and the investors they’ll hear from. entrepreneurs whose companies match their interests.

Qodeo is a SaaS data provider, not a broker, so it does not require commission on deals. For investors, the Qodeo platform is completely free—and there are about 7,000 on the platform. Merchants pay a monthly subscription fee of between $10 and $20.

“We did research at INSEAD, a business school in Europe, about the average cost and time spent by entrepreneurs in packing trying to start that journey,” said Glass. “We found that they could spend tens of thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours just to start a process that we could automate for 10 bucks.”

Compared to the price tag and uncertainty an entrepreneur might face courting investors in person, this small fee is a bargain, Glass argues, especially considering the opportunity cost faced by many entrepreneurs as they balance time spent looking for investors on a daily basis. responsibilities of running a business.

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Qodeo believes this will save founders looking for funding 350 hours on average—that’s roughly nine work weeks, if you do the math. Redistributing time and effort from the funding process to the day-to-day also helps protect founders from fundraising burnout, and the risk that they might quit before finding is the perfect combination.

“To get a sale, you have to talk to your lead six times, and most people give up on the third or fourth,” says Glass. “So if you’re talking to venture capitalists, and you’re talking to mistakes, people will give up very quickly, and you can get funded.”

Expanding the Triangle

One benefit Qodeo offers to founders is connecting them with investors who don’t have to be local. Triangle, which offers both a network of investors and many entrepreneurs across industries, is a natural market for Qodeo. But despite his British accent and London home, Glass’ roots in the Triangle go back three decades.

Glass discovered the Triangle while leading concert tours throughout the Southeast for a production company in the 1990s. Still, he sees vitality and growth potential in the area. Previous work with research colleagues at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business further cemented Glass’s belief in the Triangle market.

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After Qodeo’s “flip” to become a US corporation late last year, Glass began looking for a second city to expand in the US after New York. North Carolina made an impression on Glass–so much so that he chose Durham, not Los Angeles or Seattle, for Qodeo’s second headquarters.

“People in the Southeast are very receptive to opportunities and ideas and are often overlooked by other people,” Glass said. “From a market perspective it’s interesting, and from a diversity perspective, it’s also attractive. A lot of the businesses here are African American-run businesses and women-run businesses. There’s a interesting collision of the Southeast, and of Durham, of the old South and the new South.

While he still flies back and forth between Qodeo’s offices in New York, London and RDU, Glass is seeking Triangle funding to hire local employees in the coming months to expand the small team this. Like the investors and entrepreneurs that Qodeo connects, he believes that Durham and Qodeo are a perfect “pair.”

“We’re looking to grow more sustainable roots than we do in New York,” Glass said. “We really want to grow in Durham, because it’s a great location. You have great people there, you have talented engineers and coders, you have talented people in sales. You have options in lifestyle, good access to transportation and a lot of knowledge in one of the main markets: the Southeast.

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