For Startups

For Startups


  • What is H/L Ventures?

    Based in New York City and founded in 2009, H/L is one of the first of the “company building” studio venture firms. We were specifically designed to help great founders build great businesses, aligning our incentives as closely as possible with theirs. Unlike most VCs, we are set up as a holding company, which allows us access to evergreen capital and to longer time horizons as we are not constrained by pre-determined fund sizes and fund lifetimes. Think of us as a mash-up of accelerator (but longer-lived), venture firm (but with better alignment with you), and strategic partner/advisor (available every day, no matter what).

  • How much investment do you provide?

    The H/L Ventures studio does not provide investment up-front, rather we take equity in exchange for partnership. We may invest capital in future rounds, and in some cases, lead rounds. H/L Ventures investments have previously ranged from as little to $4,000 to as much as $1,500,000. We build first and, once we have served in the trenches with the management team and truly understand their business, we may invest financial capital depending upon our evaluation of the merits of that investment. We view our commitment of time, expertise, team, network, and experience as an investment up-front in non-financial capital. Companies coming to H/L Ventures at Series A or later are considered instead by our later-stage CityRock Venture Partners funds. CityRock makes capital investments in Series A rounds and later, preferentially in our existing studio companies, but occasionally in new companies as well. In the case of CityRock investing in a Series A or later round which is not from our studio, CityRock wil also require options/warrants in consideration of the full support of our studio team for every CityRock portfolio company, regardless of origin.”

  • If I’m fundraising now, should I still talk to you or should I wait?

    That is completely up to you. Our process does not depend on the timing of your fundraise (in fact, we often prefer to start with companies that are not in an active raise). However, if we are able to form an equity partnership before your round closes, we are able to help fundraise and potentially invest. It is important to note that we are neither professional fundraisers, nor a broker/dealer. When we work alongside our portfolio companies to raise money, it is as owners in those companies and working with, not for, the leadership team. This is a crucial distinction and one we take very seriously.

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