December 5, 2017
Today Steve Case’s venture capital firm, Revolution Ventures, announced the creation of a new $150 million ‘Rise of the Rest Seed Fund’ geared at investing in startups outside of Silicon Valley, New York, and Boston. There’s no question there is a lack of seed funding across America, and a seed funding slump as outlined by investor Fred Wilson earlier this week. This new fund will be setup to address some of the funding needs.
The new fund has a dream team set of investors which include Jeff Bezos, Sara Blakely, Tory Burch, Dan Gilbert, Ted Leonsis, Sheila Johnson, Joe Mansueto, Sean Parker, Eric Schmidt, Howard Schultz, Romesh Wadwhani, and world-class investors and executives such as Jim Breyer, Ray Dalio, John Doerr, Henry Kravis, Michael Milken, Adebayo Ogunlesi, David Rubenstein, Byron Trott, Jeff Vinik, Meg Whitman, William M. Lewis, Jr., and members of the Koch, Pritzker, and Walton families.
“We’re pleased so many of America’s most iconic investors, executives and founders have joined with us to invest in Rise of the Rest cities,” said Steve Case, the CEO of Revolution and the anchor investor in this new fund. “Their support validates our hypothesis that there are great startup investment opportunities all across the country, and that by leveling the playing field we can help more entrepreneurs in more places build companies that can improve our lives, and create jobs that can help lift up our communities.”
The new fund will be led by Managing Partner, J.D. Vance, and include David Hall, a longstanding Partner at Revolution, and Anna Mason, who joined Revolution last year as Director of Investments for Rise of the Rest and of course Steve Case.
I’ve been on a number of the Rise of the Rest bus tours and have seen some of the amazing companies across the country. The Tour has visited 33 cities to date. In each city, Revolution invested $100,000 in at least one local startup. The new seed fund will continue upon this investment strategy by applying funds at a larger scale and actively seeking out and investing in companies year-round. The fund plans to make initial investments of up to $1 million, in partnership with regional investors. The fund will not lead rounds or serve on boards, as it wants to work with other investors as an ally and catalyst.
The Rise of the Rest Seed Fund released this video (below) today which lays out more about the fund. The next Rise of the Rest bus tour is set for Spring 2018.
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