Executives with MSP experience are becoming angel investors and pumping money into early stage technology companies. Examples include Dosal Capital, Tom Wald's TW Tech Ventures and former Intronis CEO Sam Gutmann. Here's what it typically takes to become an angel investor.

Joe Panettieri, Former Editorial Director

May 8, 2013

3 Min Read
Eric Dosal is the latest MSP expert to focus on investing in technology companies
Eric Dosal is the latest MSP expert to focus on investing in technology companies.

What happens to MSP (managed services provider) executives after they sell their companies or move on to new opportunities? Increasingly, the answer involves those MSP-focused veterans becoming angel investors, venture capitalists or start-up advisors. Three prime examples involve former White Glove Technologies CEO Tommy Wald, former Intronis CEO Sam Gutmann and current Compuquip Technologies CEO Eric Dosal.

Earlier this month, Dosal’s family announced Dosal Capital. According to Eric Dosal: “This new structure gives our family a platform to continue to launch or invest in technology companies much easier than our original structure, plus from a legacy/estate planning it cleans up the organizational structures.”

In a prepared statement, Dosal Capital said: “With this reorganization, Compuquip and its sister-companies Blue Wave Communications and BrightGauge Software become operating companies of Dosal Capital. Company founder and family patriarch Alberto Dosal serves as chairman and CEO leading the strategic direction of the newly created firm, while sons Eric and Brian Dosal serve as directors driving the growth of its operating companies. The new structure further streamlines the company’s marketing platform and enables Dosal Capital to establish a uniquely identifiable brand with its own logo, website and mission.”

Compuquip, by the way, previously sold its MSP business to All Covered.

In some ways Dosal Capital sounds similar to  ConnectWise CEO Arnie Bellini and President David Bellini, who together launched ConnectWise Capital. That investment fund pumped money into LabTech SoftwareQuosal and CharTec. Some of those investments paved the way for the Modern Office Suite, which is designed for MSPs that want total IT lifecycle management.

Other Noteworthy Moves

Meanwhile, former White Glove Technologies CEO Tommy Wald has launched TW Tech Venures. When I bumped into Wald at the recent Ingram Micro Cloud Summit, he mentioned some angel investing activities. Wald exited White Glove when mindSHIFT (owned by Best Buy) purchased the company last year.

Finally, former Intronis CEO Sam Gutmann has been involved in angel investor activity in New York. Though not an MSP himself, Gutmann previously built Intronis (a cloud-focused backup company) to work with MSPs. His current areas of focus include managing director at Golden Seeds — an angel investor network that backs technology, consumer and media companies. 

About Angel Networks

So what does it take to become an angel investor? I am not speaking for the individuals or organizations above. But I have heard the following about angel networks — which group multiple investors together to help fund early stage companies. 

  • In addition to having a strong stomach for risk, the typical angel investor network asks financial backers to have a net worth of more than $1 million (excluding the value of a primary residence).

  • From there, the angel investor typically invests in at least one company annually — with a lump some of at least $25,000 to $50,000 per investment.

  • Angel networks typically rally a few dozen investors together, so that a total company investment will be anywhere from $250,000 to $1 million.

  • And just note: Your investment money could be tied up for as long as a decade — until the company has an exit or implodes.

Amid all the MSP M&A activity over the past few years, it’s good to see former MSP executives and vendors pumping money back into the technology market.


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About the Author(s)

Joe Panettieri

Former Editorial Director, Nine Lives Media, a division of Penton Media

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