Even Your Allergist Is Now Investing in Start-Ups

In London, Ivy Mukherjee, 28, a product designer, and Shashwat Shukla, 30, a private equity investor, also started investing money together in startups this year to learn new skills and connect with others in the industry network. They said they would be careful with checks for $ 2,000 to $ 5,000 because they knew they could lose anything.

“If we get our money back, it will be good enough for us,” said Shukla.

The new angels have the potential to transform a venture capital industry that has been tenaciously club-driven. They could also put pressure on bad industry players who can get away with things ranging from rudeness to sexual harassment, said Elizabeth Yin, general partner at Hustle Fund, a venture capital firm. The company also formed Angel Squad and shares business with its members.

“More competition leads to better behavior,” said Ms. Yin. (In addition to investing in startups, Hustle Fund sells mugs labeled “Be Nice, Make Billions”.)

The angel boom, in turn, has created a mini-boom of companies aiming to streamline the investment process. Allocations, the start-up led by Mr. Advani, offers group deal making. Assure, another start-up, helps with the administrative work. Others, including Party Round and Sign and Wire, help fishing with money transfers or work with startups to raise money from large groups of investors.

AngelList, which has been enabling such deals for over a decade, has steadily expanded its range of options, including rolling funds (for people writing angel investor deals) and roll-up vehicles (for startups, lots of small checks to consolidate). ). Mr. Kohli said his company runs a “fund factory” that compresses legal documents and transfers at the push of a button for a month.

Nevertheless, as a total outsider, it takes time to get access to the next hot tech start-up.

Ashley Flucas, 35, a real estate attorney in Palm Beach County, Florida, began investing in startups three years ago. She said it was an opportunity to create generational wealth, something that underrepresented people would normally not have access to.

“It’s the same people who do business with each other and share in the wealth, and I think how can I break into that?” Said Mrs. Flucas, who is black.