Kicking Off The Fund Rockies

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When I moved my family and startup from NYC to Boulder, CO in 2005, it wasn’t because of the vibrant startup scene in Boulder. There really wasn’t one back then. It was because of the people that I met. The ones that helped create a community in Boulder that was supportive, focused on helping, and clearly understood that by helping good people to succeed, we were helping all of us in the long run.

Since that time I’ve watched the startup scene in Boulder gain more and more traction as more and more awesome entrepreneurs moved out here. I’ve seen their willingness to help each other become successful and support for each other when things don’t go as planned. I’ve seen it spur a growth economy in Denver that helped Denver to become one of the best cities to live in in the US. I’ve done as much as I could to help support the growth of this community because I believe that great people doing great things are what creates a better future for us all.

Now, I have the opportunity to put capital to work to help grow that incredible network of people and companies across the entire Rockies region — from Montana, down to New Mexico.

As a Partner in The Fund Rockies, I along with my other Partners, Cristina DeVito, Judy Zhu and my long time partner in crime at Massive, Ari Newman, am kicking off a seed fund focused squarely on the early success of great entrepreneurs and startups across the region.

The Fund Rockies will invest in tech enabled companies at the earliest stages: first check, pre-seed and seed. We will be looking for companies that are moving the world forward, care about people and our collective future, and who are driven by a deep sense of purpose to turn big ideas into tangible businesses. We believe that the best people to invest in startups are the people who’ve built them!

Started by Jenny Fielding and Scott Hartley in NYC, The Fund was started to help fill a gap in early stage funding. A community of 75 local founders and operators who care deeply about supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs pooled capital, networks, and expertise to help New York’s tech ecosystem grow. A first-of-its-kind, early stage venture fund was created and fueled by community members who have built some of the City’s most iconic companies such as General Assembly, Casper, Warby Parker, Uber, Meetup, SoundCloud, ConsenSys, Summit, Handy, Plated, ClassPass, Red Antler, OneMedical, Stash and many more.

In just under 2 years, the Fund NYC has taken flight with 50 portfolio companies comprising some of the most exciting startups being built in NYC. It’s has also extended that success to Los Angeles and London. With the kickoff of The Fund Rockies, we are truly on our way to creating a global network of incredibly talented and experienced founders and operators who are now fueling the same ecosystem that gave them their success.

Having sat in every seat at the startup table, from Co-Founder, to Founder/CEO, to Investor, to employee, to advisor, to mentor, I know that the best people to help a Founder succeed are those that have gone through the same things, and understand the barriers, struggles and emotional rollercoasters that are inherent in starting a company. That’s why Ari and I created Massive, and it’s exactly why I am so excited to kick off The Fund Rockies with such a great team of Partners.

If you are a founder or operator in The Rockies and want to get involved, just give us a holler. It takes a community.

Founder, VentureVoodoo, Co-Founder, Massive. Partner, The Fund, Rockies. If you walk properly, you can move the earth. @dgmandell

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