Precursor Ventures was founded with one simple premise. It is our belief that all entrepreneurs, regardless of background, benefit from having an institutional investor to help them scale and grow their company from the very beginning. We have built the entire firm around this premise that helping entrepreneurs get started and scale will be our life’s work. To that end, we have six core principles that drive our decisions and strategy:
We want to invest in your first institutional round of investment. We do not have requirements for traction or metrics. We want to be part of the company as early as possible.
We are unafraid to back unproven, first-time entrepreneurs; unproven is not the same as incapable. We believe that the greatest returns in venture come from entrepreneurs who are capable but have not yet had the opportunity to show the world their talents and capabilities. We aggressively back entrepreneurs who have something to prove.
We hold ourselves to high standards in terms of the diversity of founders we back and support. We are committed to investing in founders who represent a wide variety of backgrounds in terms of gender, race, background, academic experience and life circumstances.
We are patient because building meaningful companies takes times and the rewards are great for those who participate in the entire journey. Building great companies takes time. There are no shortcuts and we know that the journey will be long but the rewards are worthwhile. We focus on long-term thinking.
We value intellectual curiosity and open thinking. The best companies are built by curious founders who question everything and are open to thinking about new ways to tackle problems.
Team > Market > Product. Our analysis starts first and foremost with the team. We believe that the hardest thing to change in a startup’s DNA is the founding team. Almost as important is the market. Even great teams can struggle if their energies and talents are pointed in the wrong direction.
On the practical side, there are a few things we want all founders to know before they approach us:
- We invest in early-stage companies in the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, and Toronto. We are willing to consider other geographies, but we focus our energy in these locations.
- We typically invest $100,000 to $250,000 in a company’s first round of investment. Our goal is to be a meaningful investor in your first round but to also leave room for syndication.
- We have reserves to participate in subsequent rounds of investment. We want to support the entrepreneurs we back through the lifecycle of the company.
- We are a generalist firm that invests in known and unknown areas of software and hardware. While our investment focus themes change over time, we keep an open, curious mind in our desire to learn about emerging areas and invest ahead of trends.
- We make 12-15 new investments per year on average. Our model is to invest in 12-15 teams per year on average. We believe this pace allows us to work with a wide network of founders while also being available to support those we have funded as they need help.