When I founded TechStars in 2006, the goal was to help discover amazing entrepreneurs and invest in them with not just dollars but also with a new style of super-engaged mentorship. Looking back after six years, we’ve expanded to five locations and TechStars has become something very special. The network of mentors, entrepreneurs, and investors around TechStars provide a tremendous number of unfair advantages to the startups that we fund, and helps them do more faster. TechStars is simply a joy to run. Most importantly, it touches lives and makes a difference in the world.
In 2009, I created a small fund known as Bullet Time Ventures, which had three investment strategies:
- Invest in seed and follow-on rounds of some very interesting companies that have emerged from TechStars, such as SendGrid, Next Big Sound, and Orbotix;
- Invest new companies founded by TechStars alumni, including SimpleGeo (acquired by Urban Airship) and Torbit; and
- Invest in companies that are not directly related to TechStars such as GroupMe (acquired by Skype), Twilio, and Uber.
That first fund is now finished making new investments and I’m very excited about where the companies and the fund will end up.
Earlier today I announced that I’ve closed a fresh $28M fund called Bullet Time Ventures II. This new fund will make initial investments of $50,000-$200,000. I expect that at least half of the investments will be made into startups emerging from TechStars. However, the fund is also designed to invest in any Internet software startup, anywhere.
If you know them, you probably won’t be surprised that I am incredibly humbled by the amazing people that I get to work with at TechStars every day. I feel the same when I consider the list of Limited Partners who have put their faith in me and have provided capital to this new fund. I also want to say a special thank you to everyone who has been a mentor to a TechStars company – you’ve shown the world the power of sharing your experiences and networks with high potential startups. I too have been the lucky beneficiary of game-changing mentorship. Brad Feld and Jason Mendelson have been close personal advisors to me on this journey and I am truly honored to call them friends.
I’m excited to start making new investments right away and to continue to play a small role in support of great entrepreneurs and their startups that change the world.
Let’s do this.