Angel Investing Mechanics: Courses on Termsheets and Valuations

Angel investing course - valuations and termsAs the Seraf Compass was approaching its four year anniversary, our attention turned to more active learning. We collected Compass insights and developed them into a suite of comprehensive courses allowing active learners to access the Compass materials in course form. As the project progressed, we partnered with the Angel Capital Association to co-brand the materials and allow the ACA to use them in their education efforts. Since we share the same mission and values as the ACA, we are very proud to be their official Education Partner. There are eight basic courses organized into four collections. Each course is available in electronic format or as part of one of several hard-copy books, all of which are available in both a student edition and an instructor edition with detailed teaching notes and classroom exercises.

What material is covered in these courses on termsheets and valuations?

Essentials of Termsheets will introduce you to key aspects of termsheets including:

  1. Termsheet Definition and Philosophy

  2. A Framework for Understanding the 4 Key Sections of the Termsheet

  3. A Balanced Approach to Negotiating Deal Terms

  4. Security Types Used in Angel Investments

Essentials of Valuations outlines an approach for valuing companies that continues the tradition of building on everything great that came before, but adds key refinements necessary to make it work reliably in real life:

  1. Why Valuation Matters

  2. Historical Approaches to Valuing Companies

  3. The Seraf Method for Valuing Companies

  4. How to Negotiate Valuations

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Classroom Exercises

The Termsheets and Valuations courses cover a lot of material in a short period of time. To help increase engagement with students and to improve their retention of the course material, we encourage the course instructors to add one or more exercises as part of the classroom experience. The Instructor Edition of each course contains extensive descriptions of suggested classroom exercises. Exercise descriptions should be reviewed in detail prior to teaching a class and an appropriate version of each classroom exercise should be developed for your particular teaching scenario.

Students in both courses will benefit from taking a deeper dive into one or more of the topics covered by these courses. For example, in the Termsheet course, we briefly talk about building a Board of Directors for the company. Because this is such an important issue for good corporate governance, it deserves a more thorough discussion by your students.

Notes on Accessing the Content for Classroom Instruction

There are several documents that are part of the course content for these two classes. The student slide decks are in PDF format. They are published online and can be downloaded at the following URLs:

The instructor slide decks, which include speaker notes, are also in PDF format. They too are published online and can be downloaded at the following URLs:

Embedded within the speaker notes you will find web links to more detailed content on the topics covered in the slides. For the PDF files, you can click on these links to access the in-depth content. If you prefer a hard copy edition, you can purchase the printed books at Amazon.


To learn more about negotiating termsheets and setting valuations: