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It’s not difficult to make friends and find others on the internet, but sometimes making real connections with people who are interested in the same thing as you are can be more difficult than it needs to be. So say the founders of Narvii, developer of a family of mobile apps that bring people together by very specific topics.

“If you look at Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs, having a sense of belonging and having people who care about you and what you’re saying are two very fundamental human desires,” says Narvii co-founder Ben Anderson.

Read more: Facebook + Twitter + Google Communities = Narvii

People love their pets. Unfortunately it’s impossible to be with them all the time and many pets spend hours alone in a home or apartment, pining over their missing owner, bored out of their minds and possibly destroying everything in sight.

This is the problem that recent crowdfunding champion Petcube Inc. intends to solve. The company sought $100,000 on Kickstarter this fall and attracted a whopping $251,000 over the course of its 42-day campaign.

Read more: Pet-Friendly Tech Startup Explodes On Kickstarter

Semyon Dukach spent part of the 1990s as a member of the famed MIT blackjack teams, playing with the original Strategic Investments team and later founding the spin­off Amphibian Investments. Notoriety followed, since Dukach was the only member of either team referred to by his real name in the books Busting Vegas—where he is the main character—and Bringing Down the House.

Despite a lucrative career in blackjack, Dukach was not fulfilled. "The blackjack teams had a dream," he says. "But our dream was to outsmart people and make money. There are much more important challenges out there. I wanted to make the world a better place."

Dukach found that fulfillment as a full-time angel investor because he’s able to provide startup founders with the means to achieve their goals and dreams. In that role, he invested in and is currently chairman of SMTP, a public, large-volume e-mail marketing delivery provider, which has more than 10,000 customers in 200 countries.

Read more: Former blackjack player finds fulfillment in helping startups grow

Angel investors are an important source of capital for early stage startups. Without them, many startups would never get beyond the idea phase. However, not all angels are equal. There are many individual investors, but certain traits separate the average investor from the true angel.

104A true angel not only enables a startup with fuel in the form of dollars invested, but also has the ability to make game changing contributions during startups critical early stages. Those contributions may be advice and mentorship, customer connections, and/or bringing other high quality investors into orbit around the startup. Founders should search for the angels that can augment their strengths, shore up their weaknesses and help them get whatever they most need to succeed.

Here are some additional qualities that set the best angels apart from the pack. The more of these qualities an angel has, the more desirable, from an entrepreneur’s perspective, they are to have on your extended team:

Read more: Traits of a True Angel

 
 
 
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