OUR HISTORY

We are Business Angels mentoring, supporting and investing in the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs

 

Back in 2003, Senator Pierre Laffitte, the Father of Sophia Antipolis who initiated and inspired so many revolutionary ecosystems and cultures, said “We need to create a Business Angels Club”! And, so we did!

 

We started out with 14 members and grew from these over the years to a regular membership of between 30 and 50 members from more than 20 nationalities, reflecting the very international nature of Sophia Antipolis.

 

Throughout the years, we have raised almost 55 million Euros to invest in more than 100 companies through our various investing instruments and we have done this locally, regionally, nationally and internationally, reflecting our international member base.

 

But Business Angels are not only about money. It is also very much about “Knowledge Transfer” (experience, expertise, networks and “smart money”) from serial entrepreneurs and senior executives. Business Angels are an integral part of the whole eco-system devoted to promoting, supporting, financing, and enabling a New Generation dedicated to making our world a better place.

 

As such, we encompass relationships with local, regional, national and international governments and NGO’s, with Venture Capitalists, accelerators, incubators, business clubs, and other angel groups, both locally and throughout the world.

 

To nurture and contribute to strengthening the ecosystem, we have also created two flagship programs, the SBA International Venture Academy and the SBA Start Up Factory which have imbued not only Sophia Antipolis but the world with the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit.

 

In 2008, the SBA rose to the challenge of the TEPA Law in France which allowed the establishment of Wealth Tax holdings to invest in innovative start-ups throughout France and Europe. Within a matter of months, SBA members came together to create 6 holdings (Innovation Europe and Croissance Europe which was then followed in 2009 by Succès Europe, in 2010 by Avance Europe, Etoiles Europe and the SBA ISF Holding). Not only did practically each SBA member invest in these holdings, we inspired hundreds of other people to invest in innovation and entrepreneurship in Sophia Antipolis, France, and Europe.

 

In 2009 SBA won the “Triple Crown” of Best Angel Network, Best Individual Angel, and Best Early Stage Fund from EBAN, the European Business Angel Network.

 

We are also proud to participate in the governance of structures such as PACA Business Angels Network, France Angels, and EBAN, where we’ve been involved along the years as members of the board or presidents.

 

It is also our great pleasure and honour to continue helping a number of Business Angel Networks get started and to co-invest with a number of “Sister Angel Networks”. Three of these latter Angel Networks are the Cambridge Angels, Mumbai Angels and Galata Business Angels.

 

If you are an investor and you’d like to join us, please contact us here.

 

If you are an entrepreneur and you’d like to get funded, please apply here.