What stage do you invest at? Pre-seed, Seed and occasionally Series A.
How much do you invest? $100K on average.
How many investments do you make? ~12 investments per year.
Do you make follow on investments? Not at the moment but this could change in the future.
How do you make decisions? Since I’m an Army of One, I don’t have an investment committee and generally make investment decisions based on the founding team, size and scope of market opportunity, and potential for impact (technological, societal, financial and/or sector specific). I make independent decisions and don’t require a lead to commit or wire funds.
How long does it take to make a decision? I generally make decisions in a few weeks but sometimes much quicker. I recognize that your time is your most precious resource so I strive to provide you with a clear and timely “yes or no” along with some feedback.
What do you look for in founders? There are six traits I value most in founders: product-focus, customer centricity, insatiable curiosity, self-awareness, tenacity, and missionary.
Do you have an investment thesis? I invest in technology and software companies who aim to push humanity forward. More specifically, I have a bias towards companies that focus on human potential, progress, and productivity. That said, I don’t pretend to be Nostradamus or have a crystal ball so I show up each day with an open mind and eagerness to learn.
What themes or sectors are you excited about? Human potential, progress and productivity is fairly broad. It includes health and wellness, direct-to-learner education, productivity tools, financial empowerment, creator tools, internet access, participatory communities, tools that enable entrepreneurship, climate tech, and the 100-year life. It also includes deep technology companies who are truly pushing the world forward.
Are there any themes or sectors that are off limits? It’s unlikely that I’ll invest in CPG, developer tools, phrama/biotechnology and/or brick and mortar (unless there’s a unique value prop). Rules are meant to be broken but I generally stay clear of these due to lack of expertise or bearish outlook. Additionally, I’m unable to invest in cannabis related companies.
Do you have a geographic focus? I generally believe seed investing is a local endeavor so roughly half of my investments are in New York City. That said, I also believe great leaders, products and companies can emerge from anywhere so I frequently invest outside of the region.
What’s your value add? When I get involved, I try to be helpful mostly around leadership, organizational development, personal productivity, self-care, go-to-market and fundraising. I provide a confidential and judgement-free space. All topics are welcome and fair game. This includes everything from co-founder dynamics to investor relations.
How much time do you devote to your founders? I offer weekly ‘office hours’ so founders can schedule time with me as needed. I’m also available 24x7 via text and email. I also host a monthly dinner for founders in the community. Each one is centered around leadership.
Do you “coach” the founders you invest in? Yes and no. Spot coaching and advisory sessions are always available to the founders on demand. However, I always recommend that a founder finds their own coach should they want to go deeper. That’s why I’ve developed a referral network of coaching professionals. It’s also important to note that I never actively sell and promote my coaching services to the portfolio for cash or additional equity.