Hi, and welcome to my review of America’s Comeback Summit.
I stumbled across this “summit” (AKA presentation) through an email I received and thought it sounded interesting, so I decided to look further into it.
In short, America’s Comeback Summit is a video presentation featuring Daymond John, who discusses entrepreneurship and the benefits of investing in startups as an “angel investor.”
At the end of the presentation, there’s a link to join the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network, a platform that connects self-directed investors like you and me with private companies.
The service costs between $39 and $129 and gives you crowdfunding investment ideas and resources such as training, due diligence analysis, and networking opportunities.
Is it worth it?
The answer to that will depend on various factors, including your investment goals, preferences, and risk tolerance, for example. But the service is legit and could be worthwhile if you want to invest in potential up-and-coming businesses.
In this post, I’ll walk you through what “America’s Comeback Summit” is about and how the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network works to help you make a more informed choice.
America’s Comeback Summit: All You Need to Know
America’s Comeback Summit is a video presentation featuring Daymond John, founder of multi-billion dollar clothing brand FUBU and star of ABC’s Shark Tank.
The presentation began with Daymond saying he’s “launching a bold mission” to “ignite an American comeback” with the help of the nation’s greatest entrepreneurs.
The summit took place in a warehouse in Queens, New York, and Daymond is joined by three of his “top senior analysts.” Together, they highlighted many examples of small companies that started in a garage or basement and became household names.
One of those stories was that of FUBU, an American hip hop apparel company Daymond John started out of his Mom’s basement in the early 1990s with just $40.
It was an inspiring story, to say the least, and captures the idea of the American dream down to a T, where anyone with the desire and determination can become successful.
The presentation also highlighted how, during tough times in the past, American entrepreneurs have rebuilt the country and how the next generation will lead “America’s comeback” despite challenges such as the pandemic.
According to Daymond John, the “next Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, and Jeff Bezos is out there,” and he wants to help them, which could not only benefit investors but create hundreds of thousands of jobs in the process.
“The next Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, and Jeff Bezos is out there – working in some small office on a shoestring budget.”
“Let’s help them.
If we succeed, the dreams of generational wealth could become a reality…
But just as important – those visionaries could create hundreds of thousands of jobs.”
Sounds cool, but how can “we” help these entrepreneurs?
And how can doing so benefit us?
Well, that’s where the idea of “angel investing” comes into play.
An angel investor is someone who provides financial backing to startups (small, privately-held businesses that aren’t listed on the public stock exchange) in return for ownership equity in the company. And the goal, of course, is to make a profit.
Angel investors are typically accredited investors, but as I’ll explain shortly, virtually anyone over 18 can become an angel investor thanks to equity crowdfunding. In the past, you had to be a well-connected, cashed-up investor to bet on startups, but crowdfunding changed that.
What’s the big deal with angel investing?
From the investors’ point of view, the profit potential can be massive. Because crowdfunding allows you to invest in companies before they (potentially) become an established, publicly-traded company. And because you’re getting in “early,” the profit can be high.
However, there is also a significant amount of risk involved with investing in small, privately held startups because many of these companies fail before being publicly listed through an IPO (Initial Public Offering) or before being acquired.
In other words, many startups fail before you can recover your initial investment.
So, it’s a high-risk/high-potential-reward type of investment.
Nevertheless, some people have made lots of money this way, and it doesn’t just benefit the investors. An angel investor can play a significant role in how successful a company is because when you invest, your money goes to the company, which it can use to expand.
And this was one of the main points Daymond John made in the presentation. He shared examples of startups like FUBU, Tesla, Uber, and Airbnb (among others), highlighting how important angel investors are to a successful startup.
Daymond likens the founders of the company to “heroes” and angel investors to “sidekicks” because, while the founders go through all the hard work and struggles, angel investors play more of a supportive role, yet are still critical to helping the company grow.
In any case, that pretty much sums up what the “America’s Comeback Summit” was all about; the relationship between entrepreneurs and angel investors and the benefits these types of investments can have for everyday people who want to bet on startups.
And as I mentioned earlier, the whole thing leads to a service called the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network, which gives you everything you need to learn more about angel investing and find companies Daymond John and his team are researching.
So, in the next section, I’ll show you what this service entails and how it works to give you a better idea of what to expect should you decide to check it out.
Overview of the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network
The Angels & Entrepreneurs Network is an online platform that connects self-directed investors with the founders of startups that are seeking angel investments.
The main focus of the platform is essentially putting deals in front of members, who can then decide whether or not to invest in these startups.
You get more than a list of companies to consider investing in, though. The platform provides you with due diligence on each pre-vetted company, training to show you how everything works, networking opportunities, and a rewards program.
The idea is to give you everything you need to find and evaluate the best potential startups to invest in. Each month, you get two new recommendations and once you’ve gone through the materials and founder presentation, you can decide which ones you like.
Who’s running the show? And how do they select which startups to feature?
Aside from Daymond John, the main people behind the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network appear to be Buck Jordan, David Weisburd, and Niel Patel, who are each successful entrepreneurs and/or investors in their own right.
However, the site says there are “over 100 of the top business minds” who have come together to accomplish the “mission” Daymond John talked about in the presentation.
According to Daymond John, the mission of the service has three parts and involves using their “deal flow” and “1,000x Formula” to find the startups they feature each month.
“Part 1: We’ll use our deal flow to land startups that pass our 1,000X Formula.
Part 2: We’ll only select those who’ll immediately use investment capital to create new American jobs.
Part 3: We’ll empower angels like you to work together with those startups to help them win.”
What the heck is “deal flow?”
According to Daymond John, “Deal flow means you’re invited to invest in the hottest startups by the founders.” In other words, it means he and his team have a steady stream of founders coming to them looking for angel investors.
And Daymond says that every month the “expert angels” examine hundreds of startups, eliminating 99% of them along the way because they won’t pass the “1,000X Formula.”
What’s the 1,000X Formula?
According to Daymond John, the 1,000X Formula is about finding a startup with the right idea at the right time and with the right team. Put differently, it’s the system they use for finding startups with 1,000x potential in the years ahead.
That’s a bold goal, and there is no guarantee that any of the startups they recommend will see that kind of return. In fact, many probably won’t see that kind of gain. But that is the potential they look for with each deal they showcase, according to the website.
How do you invest in these startups?
One of the main questions I had, when I was first looking into this, is how Daymond John and his team actually recommend members invest in these startups.
Because the startups they recommend are not publicly traded companies, so you can’t go to the stock exchange and buy shares. Nor can you hand money to a private company.
So, my initial suspicion was that they were recommending companies on equity crowdfunding sites like Wefunder or StartEngine, for example. Because that’s the only way non-accredited investors can bet on private companies that I know of.
And as I went through the company’s FAQ page, I learned that my suspicion was correct because it states that all “A&E Network” deals are crowdfunding deals.
“These are all crowdfunding deals with minimums less than $500 and don’t require any sort of accreditation status!”Source: angelsandentrepreneurs.com/frequently-asked-questions
What’s an equity crowdfunding site?
In short, it’s a site that allows everyday folks to invest in “pre-IPO” deals.
Prior to the 2016 JOBS Act, investing in private companies was restricted to accredited investors (high net worth individuals) and institutional investors. And from what I understand, the logic behind this was to help prevent newbies from getting recked.
But thanks to the JOBS Act, equity crowdfunding sites have become increasingly popular and allow virtually anyone over the age of 18 to invest in startups with as little as $50.
How does it work?
In a nutshell, startups set up a page on an equity crowdfunding site to raise money, and if you invest in the company, you get a slice of equity in it.
And there are two main ways to make money off of this…
The first is if you invest in a startup that eventually IPOs (gets publicly listed). If this happens, your equity stake is typically converted into shares, which you can then sell. And all going well, you could sell the share for more than you originally put into the company.
And the second “exit” strategy is through a merger or acquisition. This is where a company you’ve invested in is acquired by (or merged with) another company that you get a stake in.
Either way, the general idea is that an equity crowdfunding site allows you to invest in private companies, and all going well, it could lead to long-term profits.
Of course, there’s no guarantee it will work out, and there are considerable risks involved with this sort of thing, so you could also end up losing money.
But that’s where the Angels and Entrepreneurs Network comes into play; it’s designed to help you learn and find the best potential crowdfunding investments.
According to the FAQ page I linked to earlier, there also appear to be other deals on the A+E Network platform besides equity crowdfunding. For example, the site says some deals involve real estate and stocks, while others require you to be an accredited investor.
However, those seem to be related to higher-priced memberships (i.e., the A&E Network Lifetime, Private Deal Flow, and Founders & Visionaries memberships). I’m not sure what these memberships involve or how much they cost, but they are probably upsells.
Recommended: Go here to see my #1 rated stock advisory of 2022
How Does the A+E Network Platform Work?
The A+E Network platform is divided into four main sections, which are designed to help you discover and vet new deals, learn how to invest, and connect with other members.
Here’s an overview of each section:
- Startup HQ
- Virtual Boardroom
- Training Center
The “Startup HQ” section contains information about the startups that have been vetted by Daymond John’s analysts, and a week before the founder of the company does a video pitch, the company details are added to the “24/7 Portfolio Tracker.”
This includes information about the company such as news articles, press releases, and announcements, as well as a “due diligence package.” This “package” includes the startup’s investor presentation, business plan, projections, and information about the deal itself.
The Startup HQ section also includes a video review of the company’s Due Diligence Package by the “expert angels” and a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis. It essentially gives you what you need to research the investment.
Once this information is released on the platform, the founder does a pitch (AKA “Hot Seat Sessions”) within seven days, which is a live and interactive business presentation.
The virtual boardroom is where discussions between members take place about the startups being featured on the platform before the founder’s pitch airs.
This includes videoconferencing sessions, forum threads, and there’s a section that allows you to organize your own “local A+E chapter” if you want to meet up and discuss the business with other members in person.
The training center is where you can learn all the basics about investing in startups and how the platform works. It also includes a “1,000X Bootcamp” course.
The “rewards” section of the platform rewards members with points for collaborating, hitting various milestones, and completing tasks like reviewing a “due diligence package.”
And according to the website, these points can be redeemed for special events, gift cards, and cash. Although you’d need a lot of points to make any serious cash.
That pretty much sums up the member’s area.
Once you’ve gone through the information about the featured startup, engaged in some discussions about it, and the founder has done a pitch, the next step is to decide if you want to invest in the company. And you get the link to the crowdfunding site the deal is on.
So if you want to take part in the deal, all you need to do is create an account with the equity crowdfunding site and follow the instructions to get started.
From there, you’re encouraged to “help” the founder of the company by participating in discussions and so forth. But it’s ultimately a waiting game to see if the company succeeds and your bet was a good idea or not, as with any investment.
How many deals do you get access to?
You get access to two startup ideas when you join, and there are two new companies featured every month.
As of writing, the first featured startup is in the telehealth industry and offers “doctors on demand” for virtual consultations and home delivers medication.
And the second company provides digital tutoring sessions aimed at helping students improve their outcomes on tests, including SATs and ACTs.
The deals are always changing, though. So you might see different companies being featured depending on if and when you sign up.
How Much Does It Cost?
There are three membership levels for the Angels & Entrepreneurs Network service: Gold, Diamond, and Platinum. Each membership level gives you access to the same platform but costs different amounts and comes with different bonuses.
- The Gold membership costs $39 for one year.
- The Diamond membership costs $79 for two years and comes with various bonuses including a copy of Neil Patel’s book (Hustle) and Daymond John’s book, Powershift.
- The Platinum membership costs $129 and comes with all of what I just mentioned plus two extra startup deals and monthly reports that review updates from the startups.
Also, judging by the FAQ page I linked to earlier, it appears as though there are some upsells that give you access to different types of investments. So don’t be surprised if you sign up and receive emails about joining higher-end services.
Is Angels and Entrepreneurs Legit?
Yes. The Angels and Entrepreneurs Network is legit.
For $39, you get access to training, due diligence resources, and investment ideas from a team of successful entrepreneurs and investors including Daymond John, Neil Patel, Buck Jordan, and David Weisburd, who have each seen success in their respective fields.
Daymond John is the founder of the multi-billion dollar FUBU brand and star in ABC’s Shark Tank. Neil Patel is a best-selling author and founder of multiple successful online businesses. David Weisburd has started several successful companies and is the co-head of venture capital at 10X Capital. And Buck Jordan is the founder and CEO of a successful venture fund.
These aren’t the only people behind the Angels and Entrepreneurs Network, but they make up the “expert angels” team from what I can see. And they each have extensive experience as entrepreneurs and investors.
That said, there’s no guarantee you’ll make money following their investment ideas. The startups shared in the platform could be good investments, but you could still lose money. So even though A&E Network is legit, that doesn’t mean you’ll see a profit.
That’s why it’s always important to do your due diligence and not bet more than you can afford to lose. Because there are significant risks involved with investing, especially when it comes to speculating on small, unproven companies.
Still, the service itself isn’t a scam, and if you don’t like what you see after joining, the company has a 60-day refund policy in place.
The “America’s Comeback Summit” was all about entrepreneurship and the “sidekicks” that back these startups – angel investors. Daymond John’s story was inspiring, and he shared many examples of companies that had humble beginnings but went on to become multi-billion-dollar companies that made early investors a fortune.
And now, with the Angels + Entrepreneurs Network platform, he and his team are sharing their top startup picks with members each month.
On the one hand, it could be worthwhile if you want to learn how to invest in early-stage businesses that could provide significant upside if you choose the right one.
On the other hand, this is the sort of investment where you can easily lose your shirt. So it’s important to consider the risks and decide what’s right for you.
Either way, I hope this post helps you make a more informed choice. And if you want to share your thoughts on the presentation or service, chime in below.