The Luis Villalobos Award 

Honoring innovative companies funded by ACA members

The Luis Villalobos Award recognizes the most ingenious and innovative idea recently financed by members of the Angel Capital Association. Each year three finalists are be selected to attend the ACA Summit and honored as a group. The award is presented from among this group to the CEO of the winning company during the annual awards ceremony.

This award honors Luis Villalobos, who founded the Tech Coast Angels, one of the largest and most respected angel organizations in the world, in 1997. Companies funded by Tech Coast Angels have raised more than $1 billion to date. He was a true “leading light” in the angel field, making nearly 60 personal investments, educating numerous angels, and particularly in educating and mentoring entrepreneurs before he passed away in 2009. He was a sought-after expert and speaker about sophisticated angel investment. Luis appreciated ingenuity and entrepreneurial thinking in every aspect of life, and always looked to invest in and mentor the most innovative companies.

Award winners have a strong track record of innovation and growth.  A testament to this is the significant acquisitions of three winners in August and September of 2016.  More information about the exits of winners in 2012, 2014, and 2015 is here, along with details from the investors' views for Assurex Health, EyeVerify, and RetroSense Therapeutics.

2019 ACA Luis Villalobos Finalists

We are thrilled to honor the following companies as our 2019 Finalists. 



2019 Luis Villalobos Award Program

Three Finalist companies are selected and invited to attend the ACA Summit.  The three finalists will be honored and the award will be presented at a special ceremony on during at the ACA Summit - April 24-26 in Chicago.  Summit registration for the finalists are covered by the award organizers and the winner receives reimbursement for travel costs.  

Benefits to Selected Finalists: 

  • One ticket to the 2019 ACA Summit in Chicago (April 24-26, 2019) and up to two night hotel stay
  • Chance to speak briefly about your company during the awards ceremony to the plenary audience
  • Access to a shared exhibit table throughout the event for meetings and contacts. 
  • PR about their selection as a 2019 Finalist and/or Winner.
  • The winning company will also receive travel expenses. 

Participation Costs: 

  • There are no costs to participate in this awards program.  
  • Finalist companies do need to cover theirown travel to the ACA Summit location. As noted above each Finalist is provided a comp to attend the event and other benefits. 

2019 Winner

Past Winners