I successfully pitched two major players on a game deal with an established team and a proven sales record. Half of it is financed, and I'm looking for the other half. Everyone I talk to says what I've done is the hard part and financing the rest is the easy part. I have not found the money and I risk losing the deal. I can't crowdfund because the players in this deal don't want to risk credibility. What don't I know, but should?
Personally, I have always found harder to finance and than creating opportunity.
It is quite "easy" (once you have the right value proposition and target customers) to sell but getting paid is way more difficult. Most small business are dying not because they are not selling, but because they are not getting paid early for their work and finally lacking liquidity for their operations.
So funding is a bit like getting paid in advance.
What we usually do is split the total bill in bits to be paid out gradually based on progress and well defined target.
I have seen your situation before with other customers. What they did was to start developing the product with the budget they had focusing on the most interesting part and then they went with this half finished but functional product to pitch investors. And this how they got the missing part of the funding.
You need to target seed stage investors who like to "follow." Your current investors act as validation for your idea and deal. Investment is a game of knocking on the right doors versus sales, which is just knocking on a lot of doors. Ask around your network for investors that have done similar deals in the past to what you are proposing. Connect with them and gauge their interest and what they'd be able to bring to the table. Keep up meetings and provide updates, getting them excited about what you're up to. Presenting at a game-centric Angel Forum is another avenue.
You literally have done the "hard" part, you have a lead investor. You've made it where 99% of venture-backed businesses don't. However, getting people to part with large sums of money still takes time, they need to trust you will do well with it. Keep talking to seed stage investors who have funded ideas like yours and you'll get there.
I'm a believer in shoestring start-ups so I would be creating a situation that would have investors seeking me out. You need to get yourself out there in front of as many people as possible bragging about your great new product so that investors call you. Let me say this an investor who called you is worth at least 10 times one you phoned. One your in charge and your looking for the best investors, the other your one of a hundred people calling them and they are looking for the best investment, which position do you want to be in. How do you have them clamoring to your door is get some minimal, viable version of your product or service so you can show some real figures, real buyers not just a hypothetical possibility of success. Call me for more on this, thanks....Ken Queen