Quarterly venture capital reports have become a popular barometer of financial activity in the entrepreneurial world. They provide a helpful snapshot, but also have their shortcomings – including a lack of complete data.

Angel capital numbers have been far less organized, in part due to the nature of the investments. But the Angel Capital Association (ACA) is seeking to remedy that with publication of the first ACA Angel Funders Report.

This pilot phase collected data from 26 angel funding groups across the United States. It offers a variety of informative charts, as well as the following key findings:

  • Angels invest early and often: while very early stage round financing dominates at 59% of angel group deals, 36% were in Series A or later rounds, including 13 Series C investments and one Series E
  • Angel groups invest in both their home communities and beyond their local base: while the groups in the report were located in 17 states, their investments were made in companies in their states and an additional 21 states, plus one Canadian province and Israel
  • Angels use a variety of investment structures: many investments were in equity deals, but nearly 36% of rounds were convertible notes or SAFEs
  • Syndication is vital for startups and angel groups
  • Angel-backed companies have more female CEOs (21%) compared to VC-backed companies (2%-5% according to other reports)
  • Angels invest in a variety of industries, but more than two-thirds of the deals were in the tech and life science fields

The ACA has aggressive, and much needed, expansion plans. But this is a good starting point in trying to better understand an often murky angel investment picture.

Bill Waltz is vice president of taxation & public finance for the Indiana Chamber. He is also an attorney and has been with the organization for nearly 15 years.