Philosophy

Our singular goal is to help you build a company of which you can be proud. If you and your team accomplish this, massive financial outcomes will be a byproduct of your success, not the motivating factor.

Why we exist

Our philosophy regarding the practice of venture capital investing is simple - the money we contribute to your company is a necessary, but not sufficient, component of our commitment to you. Sweat, reputation and accountability are what we promise. We get up every morning to work on your behalf. Talk to any founder we’ve backed and you’ll hear their own variation of the same story: we are on their team; we help them in broader and bigger ways than they expected; and we play to win.

How we help

Our belief is that a startup built for the long-term is supported by a foundation of three core pillars: team, product and go-to market strategy. We bring to bear in support of this foundation the operating experience of our core team, the focus of a fund that does nothing but early stage investing, the solidarity of our portfolio founder community and the extensive reach of our community relationships.

To help put those pillars in place, we commit our most valuable resource: time. In collaboration with each team, we establish a collaboration cadence that includes scheduling ongoing conversations - sessions where you assign us homework, not where we fly by with uninformed suggestions and demands. Then we move from the tactical to the strategic, helping you run bi-monthly or quarterly strategic working sessions (sometimes called board meetings) to dive deep into the big questions on your mind and solidify the pathway to your next set of milestones. Throughout, we’re always an email, text, direct message or phone call away. We commit the time to help you move faster and scale bigger – whether it’s identifying and recruiting top talent, getting on a whiteboard to collaboratively solve what’s bugging you or connecting you with a subject matter expert for the 30-minute conversation that saves two weeks of swirl.

Our investment process

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.

Homebrew’s investment process is meant to give you and us the chance to feel what it would be like to work together, not just pitch each other. Our goal is to make efficient use of your time, moving quickly down a narrowing path to conviction. Simultaneously, you’ll be getting to know us, because committing to take on any investor is a critical, long-term decision.

Mechanically, our process is basically a first meeting with one of the Partners, where we’re trying to get from “Oh, this could be compelling” to “Oh, this IS compelling.” Then the other partner will join for the next phase, to talk about a handful of questions that we want to go deeper on with you. It’s not a random walk. We don’t wait to see if any other investors are also willing to commit to you. We don’t give you a bunch of smiles and then disappear.

We make funding decisions by consensus - even though one of us will be the point person post-investment, we want you to know that HOMEBREW has invested in you. Once there’s mutual enthusiasm we work with you to find an entry point that makes sense for your funding needs. Our general goal is to play a large part of your initial financing, with an ownership goal of between 10-15% (generally with a syndicate that is already forming or that we can help you assemble). Then it’s a simple set of documents based on the Series Seed standard term sheet (we strongly prefer priced equity rounds). We pay our own legal fees and make the process transparent. We believe that a relationship should start from a place of mutual trust. Signatures, wire transfer and then the real fun begins!

Other facts about how we invest

While we always work with entrepreneurs to understand their specifics needs, we do have defined principles which guide our investing.

  • We target 6-8 investments per year, because this pace allows us to spend the majority of our time supporting the founders we’ve backed. These companies usually have at least a working product or prototype, but we’ll often invest in stellar teams at the concept stage.
  • We typically invest between $750k and $2m before a Series A financing. Seed is a phase, not a single round, and while we may most often deliver this commitment as part of a larger financing, we’re prepared to support you all the way to a next round.
  • We commit to serving on the company’s 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. We typically step off at the Series B, because we don’t believe in overcrowding your board room with investors.
  • We support our companies over time by investing in later financing rounds when appropriate and have access to even more capital for unique opportunities.