Version One in 2015: A year of building, backing, and exits

By Angela, December 17, 2015

As 2015 comes to an end, it’s time to reflect on what we’ve done and where we’re headed. It’s hard to believe that it has been just a little over a year since we launched Fund II with $35M in commitments. Since then, we’ve accelerated our pace – backing exceptional entrepreneurs, feeding their growth, and seeing others out with successful exits.

Here are some of the most memorable highlights for us in 2015:

New portfolio companies

This year, we welcomed five new companies to the Version One portfolio:

  • Headout:  an on-demand marketplace for tours, activities and experiences
  • Shift Messenger:  a communication platform for hourly workers
  • Booster Fuels:  still in private beta with the mission to eliminate the gas station errand permanently
  • and two more unnamed

We also publicly announced two companies, which we invested in at the end of 2014:

  • Volley:  a community that connects people who need help with those who like to help
  • Vertical.ai:  an autopliot app for drones that helps film dynamic aerial tracking shots

Exits

We celebrated the exits of three of our portfolio companies this year:  Clarity, Dwellable, and Tindie.

Portfolio Summary and Investment Focus

Our existing portfolio companies have continued to build their businesses with nine of them raising new rounds.  We participated in these follow-on deals to further support our founders.

In total, our 23 active companies collectively raised $65M in 2015.

While our highest concentration of companies is now in the SF/Bay Area (7), we remain geographically agnostic and are excited about the growing ecosystems outside the Valley, particularly Toronto/KW (6), Seattle (5), and NYC (2).

In addition to investing, we focused our time on developing our investment theses, particularly around marketplaces (we published a handbook) and healthcare (we published a blog series with Union Square Ventures). Other themes that we are bullish about for the new year include: mobile marketplaces, B2B marketplaces, mobile SaaS, machine learning and artificial intelligence, Bitcoin and blockchain technology, Fintech 2.0, eSports, and virtual reality.  

We’ve learned that we love all things with strong network effects.  And of course, we stay inspired by our founders and the amazing new entrepreneurs we meet as they strive to make a positive impact.

Finally, we are indebted to our LPs, colleagues, partners, portfolio companies, friends, and followers, for their continued support.  Thank you all for a great year!

Our warmest wishes to you and yours for a happy holiday season and here’s to a 2016 that is rich in creativity and innovation.

-Angela & Boris 🙂

  • Moe

    Angela & Boris,

    Kudos for such a successful 2015! May you continue to be privileged with backing awesome, innovative startups, and with continuing to be a resource for the entrepreneurial community (I loved your handbook on marketplaces!).

    Best,
    Moe (Hometalk)

  • bwertz

    Thanks for the nice words, Moe!

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