Stormbreaker is an early stage fund focused on capital-efficient startups. Stormbreaker partners with the high-
velocity, high-conviction companies that stand out from their peers because they are driven to build efficiently.
Please share with us about the competitive advantages of micro VCs over “mega-funds”?
Due to the pace at which they have to deploy capital, larger funds are required to invest more dollars in each company, which pushes their dollar-weighted capital into larger, later stage rounds at higher valuations. This dilutes returns and reduces the amount of time a partner can dedicate to each company.
Stormbreaker combines the flexibility, agility, and common sense of a small fund with the deep bench and resources of a bigger fund.
As firms are successful and go on to raise larger funds, they’re no longer able to write small checks. In contrast, we’re oftentimes the first outside check into a company and can dedicate the necessary time to roll up our sleeves and run through walls for our founders.
How has your business experience as an eCommerce startup Founder & your work behind some of the several top tech IPOs and M&As helped you to become a successful venture capitalist?
My prior experience as a founder and operator has given me the grit and empathy to get on the same level as founders. I’m able to identify their pain points and help them with the issues keeping them up at night because I’ve been in their shoes. I know how painful it can be to deal with traditional incumbent VCs and Stormbreaker was started to be truly different in this regard.
From my work on some of the larger technology IPOs and M&A deals in Silicon Valley, I’ve gained a strong perspective on what contributes to a great outcome. I’m now able to take those lessons and experiences to help early-stage companies work towards those outcomes. Furthermore, when I was working on those industry-shaping transactions, I built an incredible network that I now leverage to help early-stage companies.
Tell us more about your investment thesis & top performing companies.
We believe in a future where venture capital is more equitable, more efficient, and more genuine. We see an opportunity within venture capital to be a true partner to our founders, not just a check that bides time until their next round.
Stormbreaker partners with the high-velocity, high-conviction companies that stand out from their peers because they are driven to build efficiently. We’re focused on startups that don’t see capital as an immediate requirement for growth, but instead as the best path forward for their business at the right time. These are companies that prioritize disciplined decision making and market traction over stepped up valuations.
Companies in our portfolio such as Cameyo, Copper Cow Coffee, ZecOps, Gainful, Contractbook, Reigning Champ and others have been great validation of this thesis.
Why is your “hands on” / holistic ecosystem approach so important for your startups’ growth and success at the early stage? How is Stormbreaker Ventures actively supporting its companies?
When we make investments, we are committed to our companies for their lifespan. We become trusted and preferred partners of our entrepreneurs, which allows us to take a hands-on approach where needed and simultaneously protect our invested capital and equity.
Our active approach with portfolio companies—from business development and growth strategy to fundraising support and key introductions––results in better relationships with our founders, access to high-quality investment opportunities, and ultimately, superior returns.
Share with us about your top-tier advisor network and how is their unique point of view helping your portfolio thrive and succeed?
Our advisory network is composed of folks ranging from executives and CEOs of public technology company CEOs, the original founders of some of the top technology companies in the world, to world-class researchers, thinkers, and other experienced professionals. They help both with sourcing and portfolio company support.
This network of advisors allows us to take a scalable approach to rolling up our sleeves and being actively engaged with our portfolio companies. It’s through this network that we’ve introduced our portfolio companies to their biggest enterprise clients, management hires, etc. and advised them on transformative decisions around strategy, business development, and other key areas.