New Video Series Covers Rural Angel Investing

Managers of venture capital funds and angel investor networks share insights

March 26, 2019, 8:44 am | Mark Edelman, Willy Klein

AMES, Iowa – A new video series and website, Strategies for Rural Angel Investing, guides stakeholders interested in Iowa’s emerging rural investor networks for agricultural technology startups and strategic rural ventures. These Iowa State University Extension and Outreach resources are available as part of a grant sponsored project called the Iowa Rural Equity Project.

Mark Edelman in hallway of Economics Department.Mark Edelman, ISU Extension and Outreach ag economist and project coordinator, conducted interviews with managers from a dozen Iowa based venture capital funds and angel investor networks interested in rural projects. Videos of the interviews give insight into legal requirements, due diligence, types of investments and deal flow.

“It made sense to conduct interviews with the different types of equity networks in Iowa that are interested in agricultural technology and rural innovation. As a result, rural investors and entrepreneurs might become more aware of Iowa’s emerging rural venture ecosystem and equity capital networks, and become  more effective in connecting with the emerging networks,” Edelman said.  

The "Strategies for Rural Angel Investing” video series and more information about the project can be found by visiting

“With the uncertainty in agricultural trade, farm policy and the rural economy, some rural stakeholders have been showing interest in examining alternative investment opportunities that can lead to personal income growth, as well as adding value to agriculture and community economic vitality in rural regions,” said Edelman.  

The “Strategies for Rural Angel Investing” video series is co-sponsored by the Iowa Rural Equity Project through a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration, Iowa State University, Ag Ventures Alliance, Iowa Microloan foundation, Bill Menner Group, and a statewide steering committee of 16 rural leaders and stakeholders.

Since 2002, Edelman has served as director of the Community Vitality Center at Iowa State University, which supports entrepreneurship, philanthropy, rural dialogue and demonstration projects. Since joining Iowa State in 1986, Edelman has also advised several rural business ventures, including rural housing, ethanol and angel investor networks.


Audio file: Mark Edelman describes the "Strategies for Rural Angel Investing” video series.

Transcript. Mark Edelman: "We have a series of videos that we have produced to provide an educational program that involves looking at the basics of investing, questions that you need to know before you invest your first dollar, as well as profiles of a number of equity capital managers that represent networks and funds in Iowa that are interested in doing agricultural technology and rural innovation deals in the state."

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