Chicago-based Cocoa Compost, previously known as the Premium Compost Company, takes organic waste materials and transforms them into compost-based fertilizers used on agricultural fields. "We get paid a tipping fee revenue to take the organic waste materials to transform them into compost fertilizers," said Founder and CEO Adam Brent. "Then we get paid for the fertilizer compost from the farmers." Cocoa takes pride in not only its technology, but also its positive impact on the environment.
Brent noted that one sometimes overlooked aspect of fundraising is is finding the right investor for your company. "Sometimes the fit isn’t quite right for your specific venture model," he said. "But you have to keep searching for the perfect investor in your niche."
Cocoa's attendance at the Michigan Growth Capital Symposium and other events has helped the company find appropriate investors and expand its network of contacts for future fundraising. "The benefit of attending symposiums is networking," Brent said. "They provide mentorship and advisors, so I am able to utilize them throughout my fundraising. It brought out the different aspects and emphases on intellectual property and trademarking. It also helped when looking at the value proposition to start communicating to the investors, as well as to the customers."