Homebrew is a seed stage investment fund based in San Francisco.
How we invest
While we always work with entrepreneurs to understand their specifics needs, we do have defined principles which guide our investing.
- Homebrew targets 8-10 investments per year, because our goal is to be available to support founders with guidance when needed, not just capital. These companies usually have at least a working product or prototype, but we’ll also invest in stellar teams at the concept stage.
- Homebrew typically invests between $500k and $1m in a seed round financing for a company. Our preference is to lead or co-lead the round with a small syndicate of high quality angels and/or venture capital firms.
- We commit to serving on the company board because we believe that establishing board oversight early helps companies develop important disciplines and structures, which increase the likelihood of successfully raising additional capital.
- Homebrew supports our companies over time by investing in later financing rounds when appropriate, so we generally reserve an additional $3 for every $1 of initial investment, with access to additional capital for unique opportunities.
- Homebrew investment documents mirror the standard Series Seed documents, with the exception of the fact that we like to pay our own legal expenses.
How we help
We invest in companies which are likely to succeed without our help. Our goal is to provide assistance that helps increase the probability, scale and pace of that success. Homebrew help comes from us directly, our Entrepreneur Advisors and the broader Homebrew network.
We focus our energies in three distinct areas critical to a company’s success throughout its existence:
- Product design boils down to assisting with everything needed to get to product-market fit: defining the problem, focusing the solution, acquiring customers, delivering a “wow” first experience, testing and iterating, and identifying how to scale customers and revenue.
- Organizational design, which tends to be where startups underinvest, includes establishing recruiting and onboarding processes, creating and modifying organizational structure and defining culture and core values.
- Business strategy encompasses the areas outside of product, engineering and design that are required for market success, including distribution, pricing, partnerships and fundraising.
What we seek
Homebrew’s focus is startups that are helping businesses, developers and individuals drive economic growth and innovation through simpler, cheaper and more direct access to technology, information and customers – what we call the Bottom Up Economy. We believe that successful companies in this area will not only create tremendous value, but that they will also have a massive impact on society and wealth distribution. The types of companies that we consider to be a part of the Bottom Up Economy are software-as-a-service for small business, API-based platforms, vertical marketplaces, direct-to-consumer businesses/services and peer or collaborative economies. These types of companies often have key characteristics that we look for in our investments: strong network effects, rich data assets, inherently viral growth vectors and long-term defensibility.
We invest in mission-driven founders who embrace big – big ideas, big impact, big risk. Most importantly, we invest in teams that we hope to spend time with and support now and again in the future. We look for founders that have a passion and unique insight into solving a specific problem. We appreciate an orientation towards data and using it to question and change assumptions. We value integrity, focus, flexibility and a relentless will to succeed. We want leaders who collaborate, inspire and take time to celebrate the small victories. We invest in people who we would want to work for or have on our teams.
Where we invest
Given our focused model, the majority of our investments will be in the Bay Area, but we also intend to make a number of investments in New York based on the strong ecosystem and our personal histories there. We will certainly review investments beyond those markets (talking to you LA) but need to see strategic reasons for the team to be based where they are. We do not currently invest in companies that are based outside of the United States.
What we drink
Yes, we like beer. And wine. And single malt scotch…a lot. Satya will happily imbibe Pliny the Elder, Saison Dupont, any cab you can chew, Oban and Balvenie. Hunter used to enjoy dirty martinis (and still occasionally does) but now is more likely to be found with a cup of tea. If you want to try our homebrew, come visit us!
How to reach us
The best way to reach us is via referral from someone we know and trust, ideally someone we have worked with in the past. We also regularly respond to inquires via email.