200. University-Affiliated Funds & Angel Networks (Jason Whitney)



Jason Whitney of IU Ventures joins Nick to discuss University-Affiliated Funds & Angel Networks. In this episode, we cover:

  • Backstory/path to venture
  • At IU you have 3 core initiatives - The Quarry, IU Venture Fund and the IU Angel Network. What's the focus of each?
  • Talk about the investment focus for the IU Philanthropic Fund.
  • What're the criteria to be eligible for funding?
  • How does IU Ventures support the University's mission? How does it affect or benefit current students?  
  • As a broader goal, I know the organization ultimately hopes to entice investors and entrepreneurs from around the country to return to Indiana as a result of participating in the network. Are you measuring this and are your efforts working thus far?
  • So, a criticism of both university venture funds and angel groups is speed -- traditional angel groups and academia move slowly with investment decisions.  How do you combat that issue for founders raising on a tight timeline, trying to close a round?
  • I was speaking with a university-affiliated investor just last week and he was saying, there's just not enough deal flow when you restrict investments to companies that have a specific university affiliation... do you agree/disagree?
  • I've heard from a number of the Alumni Ventures Groups in recent years  -- there are folks leading funds and angel groups with alumni from a particular university... are you a part of this effort and what's your impression of the Alumni Ventures Groups?
  • Let's talk more about the IU Angel (Read more...)