The coronavirus pandemic has thrown the global markets into complete chaos.

Industries that were doing well are suddenly tanking… and companies that weren’t doing much are going bananas trying to meet demand.

Think about it… When was the last time a friend of yours wanted to buy an extremely large jigsaw puzzle… and couldn’t get one?

That’s just a silly example, of course – but my point is, a lot of supply chains have been turned completely upside down.

I don’t see things normalizing anytime soon… At least not until a vaccine for COVID-19 is developed. It’s the one benchmark everybody is waiting for. Without a vaccine, it’s hard to be confident enough to start opening stores and factories.

There are nearly two dozen companies in the United States alone working to develop it right now. But many of them are running into major hurdles. Out of 20+ companies in the race, only six have made it to human trials.

One of the most promising leaders is a Massachusetts-based biotech company called Moderna. Their vaccine, mRNA-1273, could proceed to its final round of human testing this year, pending the results of the trial.

Moderna has already received more than $400 million in Federal capital to develop the product… and early results look promising.

So it should come as no surprise that investors have already come running. Moderna went public back in 2018, and its stock price has more or less hovered below $20 since then.

Well, Moderna stock is up more than 60% in the last month alone – which means its shareholders are rejoicing. But as always, if you flip back to the chapters that happened before the big IPO… you get to see a much more interesting story.

Just for kicks, I decided to do a little digging to find out how Moderna’s angel investors made out. And I was not disappointed.

One of Moderna’s earliest investors is a Harvard University medical professor named Timothy Springer. In fact, he’s an immunologist – so he knew this company’s potential when he saw it. He invested $5 million into Moderna years ago… and today, his stake is worth well over $800 million.

That’s a 17,000% gain. If he’d waited until Moderna’s IPO, he’d be up about 122% – an impressive return by any measure… But compared to 17,000%, it sounds a little lean, doesn’t it?

My point is that angel investing remains the best (and maybe the only) way that an investor can beat the stock market by multiple orders of magnitude – even now, while the global markets are in turmoil. Timothy Springer is a billionaire now. Many angel investors before him joined the billionaire club the same way… and many more will follow.

It’s easy to look back at a story like this and think, “Man, what was I doing back then? Why did I miss out?” But I can assure you that a few years from today, we’ll be looking at another huge success story… And it could be one that starts right now.

Like all of life’s most important events, there’s never one “perfect time” to make your first angel investment. It’s just one of those things – every moment could be perfect. Personally, I woke up one day and decided I was tired of watching other people get rich this way. So I stepped off the sidelines and into the game. Will you?

Until next time,

Neil Patel


26 responses to “True Story: This Angel Investor Just Made a 17,000% Return on One Bet”

  1. Thank you for sharing this compelling story with us. I appreciate the Angels + Entrepreneur Network. It has made me smarter and astute.

  2. How did a medical professor afford to invest $5 million to invest in a single Startup? That is more or less putting all your eggs in one basket. That is why I prefer Equity Crowdfunding.

  3. Wow I can’t wait to see the out comes of my investment’s but I really love seeing the companies grow just to be apart of that has made my days go by better each and every day.

    • How do I invest with very little $ to invest with? I try to live on a very small limited income and I struggle every month to pay my bills and some go unpaid which leaves my credit scores so low that I’ll never get ahead without a miracle. I desperately want to know what it feels like to be able to not worry how I’m going to get though every month.

  4. U Know I am just a beginner with very little money compared to this Dr who invested $5 million and in turn made a 17,000% return. I am In the wrong league for this kind of money. I am only able to afford $100.00 st a time and need to find these kind of deals.

  5. I am a poor elderly lady that has had a hard life. I just lost my home of 30 years Jan. 18, 2018. It was so devastating. I have been wanting to invest but don’t even know how to start. I do not have the knowledge of how to begin. With this stimulus money I only can invest $100. Can you please advise me as to who I need to contact to get an investment started right now? With your knowledge, sacrifices, education, hard work and last but not least your time. experience your advise would be greatly appreciated. Anxiously awaiting your response. Thank you so much.

  6. Wonderful story. We invested at $19 but wish I had been in the game pre IPO. Hopefully our A&E investments will do this well.

  7. amazing stories I hope to be a part of this adventure. I aim new to investing and i hope we all are successful

  8. Hi Neil,

    Thank you for the good work. I have been trying to register with my local debit card from Nigeria but could not get through.

    Do you accept payment via Paypal? Kindly advise another mode of payment.


  9. Assuming Timothy Springer plunked down $5M and the annualized yield was constant, he made his investment in 2004. What was his actual hold time to yield the $800M?

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