We are a $40 million early stage technology venture capital firm. We partner with founders seeking to invent new market categories or transform large, existing industries. Our sweet spot is internet, mobile and software startups. We like investing in startups either creating new industry categories (e.g. social networking in 2005 and social gaming in 2007) or disrupting a large, existing market with a 10x better product or service that wasn’t possible before (e.g. CRM and the cloud in 2000).
We each have deep operating experience in the tech industry. But we believe great companies are built by great entrepreneurs, not venture capitalists. We like to help behind the scenes. Our entrepreneurs count on us for introductions, advice on hiring, inking partnerships, and every once in a while, operational issues. And sometimes, with their blessing, we help them get crazy acquisition offers.
How much do they invest?
We prefer to be the first venture investor and we follow our investments, aiming to be shareholders for seven to ten years. We invest as little as $250,000 to seed a company and as much as $2,000,000 to lead a round. We invest early, between $250k-$2m. Some folks call us a seed fund. Others think of us as an early Series A fund. We aren’t a concept fund, even though we’ve written checks after seeing nothing more than a Powerpoint.
How do they work?
Be prepared to show us evidence of a clear market insertion point. If you’re a consumer startup, our bar is even higher. We need to see early traction, because we’ve learned data is the best evidence of what resonates and what doesn’t with consumers.
This makes a difference to them
We like taking risks on brilliant people and products. We prefer to work with founders who are either technical or domain experts in their industry. We don’t mind young or first-time founders. We’ve found the universal hallmark of great companies is the ability of founders to attract and hire exceptional candidates, raising the bar of the company with each successive hire.
Hussein Kanji, Partner
Safe-View (acquired by L-3)
Radiance (acquired by Comcast)
Studio Verso (acquired by KPMG)
London Business School
Stanford University (Symbolic Systems)
Rob Kniaz, Partner
University of Maryland (Computer Science)
Dylan Collins, Venture Partner
Jolt (acquired by Gamestop)
Demonware (acquired by Activision)
Startup Ambassador, Ireland
Vijay Pandurangan, Technical Advisor
Mitro (acquired by Twitter)
Jumo (now GOOD)
Carnegie Mellon University (Computer Science PhD)
Columbia University (Computer Science)
George Washington University
Startups they funded
Adazza, Algomi, bd4travel, darktrace, deliveroo, behavox, optimoroute, raptor supplies, tourradar, vitesse, yieldify, gocardless, halo neuroscience, signpost, tarmin, hem