This past fall, former AOL CEO Steve Case announced a second, $150 million investment fund to back small companies based outside the traditional, coastal U.S. tech hubs—namely Silicon Valley and Boston/New York.
I think it’s a great idea. But I’m a little biased, as my investment firm has been pursuing this strategy for more than 15 years.
When I heard about Case’s new initiative, I smiled. Then I went back through some of our internal investment data starting with our eighth fund, which we raised in 2008. In that fund, about 50% of our dollars invested went to companies in the U.S. heartland, South, or Pacific Northwest—basically any geography in the U.S. that wasn’t New York, Boston or the San Francisco Bay Area.
In that eighth fund, 24 of the 53 total portfolio companies in which we invested fit this description. They included little-known, healthcare-software companies Continue reading “What I See in Steve Case’s Revolution—Actually, a Long History of Tech Innovation in the Heartland”