Maaike Doyer

Episode 1

Written by

Krista Goon

Published on

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Womenpreneurasia S06 Maaike Doyer

Maaike Doyer

Episode 1

Written by

Krista Goon

Published on

Share this episode on:

Womenpreneurasia S06 Maaike Doyer

As an angel investor, typically you come in pretty early in startup. With Epic Angels, you would only invest $1000 or even $5,000 per startup. So you invest small amounts and you’re there really to help that ecosystem to the next level.

maaike doyer

The first episode of Season 6 is in conjunction with International Women’s Day! I’m proud to present to you a two-parter episode where we talk about women in business and funding specifically from angel investors.

Today’s episode is with a Singapore-based Dutch entrepreneur, Maaike Doyer who is the founder and managing partner at Epic Angels. 

Maaike wants to democratize angel investing and make angel investing accessible, like getting a cup of coffee.

She is definitely not Asian. I made the exception and invited her to be part of this special International Women’s Day episode because we’re talking about funding women entrepreneurs and particularly, female startup founders in Asia. 

This is the first part of a two-part series. The next episode is about how women can become angel investors and Maaike will debunk some of the myths about angel investing as well as invite you to be part of her angel investing network. 

If you know any female startup founders who need to hear this episode, share this with them. Maaike talks about the cupcake test, the 2-minute test, what should be in your pitch deck and when you should be pitching to investors. 

According to a report by Harvard Business Review, women-led startups received only 2.3% of venture capital funding in 2020. Research shows that investors tend to back those they perceive as similar to them. Instead of trying to convince male investors to invest in women, there is a need to focus on increasing the percentage of female investors. 

Maaike wants to democratize angel investing and make angel investing accessible, like getting a cup of coffee. The Epic Angels network comprising female executives and operators wants to give women the confidence to invest, by learning about the investment process, and understanding how other women invest.

If you want to get money from investors, angels, or VCs, you need to show that you will be able to grow their money. A VC is not looking to get 10% return on this deal. They want to get 10 times the return on this deal. So that’s a big difference from, you know, just someone who wants to lend you some money and gets a 10% interest.

They focus on early-stage startups in Asia across all verticals and invest in pre-seed, seed, and Series A rounds. 

Besides, they strongly advocate female leadership so having at least one woman on the startup’s executive team is preferred and they invest up to 150K USD per company.  

On the Epic Angels website, it says that they invest in founders who refuse to die and founders who choose agility over ego.

One of Maaike’s favourite quotes is “Get out of the building” which simply means get to know your customers in their own environment. Many startups waste energy on design and sales and launch products into markets they know little about. What they should do is get out and interact with the customers. This helps a company better understand their customers’ wants and needs to build a product that they actually want, not what the business thinks they want. 

Another one of her favourite quotes is “no analysis paralysis” and “the single right solution does not exist (always think in options)”. You will hear her talk about thinking in options in this episode as this is also her mantra for her own life! 

Maaike says, “There is not one single person I am inspired by. I get inspired by so many people every week. I love to observe and try to figure out why people do what they do. That inspires me. But if there would be one person, I would say Queen Maxima of the Netherlands.”

Maaike is an avid reader and chuckles that “I can get really lost in books, primarily novels. On a holiday, I easily read a book a day. For me, that is really relaxing.” Music from the 70s and 80s and singing karaoke are some of her favourites! 

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Don’t start with the investor that you really want. Start with an investor you probably don’t want. Because with your business, you need to build prototypes. As an entrepreneur, you’ve already know that you need to build prototypes. You need to do the same thing with your pitch deck. what’s your prototype? What’s your beta testing before you go live? What can you do to get feedback from as many people as possible? 

She has had so many milestones because she says she keeps on being curious and keeps on exploring ith “leads to so many amazing things”. 

In terms of Epic Angels, she remarks, “I am proud that within a year after we opened our doors, we got to more than 100 female angels, leading to being the largest female-only angel network in Asia Pacific. And within that period, we invested more than half a million USD in startups.”

This is Part 1 of a two-part episode that kickstarts Season 6. Catch Part 2 or Episode 2 next Friday as I continue my conversation with Maaike and this time, we will get to know her story as well as how more women can join her in her network as an angel investor.

Find out more about Maaike Doyer through these links: