What is Motley Fool Ventures?
We’re an early stage, technology-focused venture capital fund, powered by The Motley Fool’s brand, investing approach and communities.
We consider early stage to be young, growing companies with operating businesses and initial customers. Often, these companies fall into the category of “Series A,” but we recognize that those labels are fluid. While not all of our companies will initially be focused on revenue, many will join the portfolio with between $500K and $5M of annualized revenue.
Technology-focused does not simply mean that a company employs technology in the business. It’s rare that one does not. We look for situations where founders are leveraging technology to create a clear competitive advantage and to disrupt their industry. We have a particular interest in the areas of finance, culture, people, and business processes.
On occasion, we can be Motley.
In some ways, Motley Fool Ventures combines the best of corporate venture capital and traditional venture capital firms. In other ways, it stands out from both. Like a traditional venture capital fund, Motley Fool Ventures has Limited Partners who commit capital, and a General Partner who manages the money on behalf of the limited partners. The clarity of the capital commitment, the agile and dedicated team, and the ability to invest independently are elements we share with traditional VCs. However, like a corporate VC, we have the backing of a successful operating company behind us, with access to resources that most VCs can only dream of having.
We look for the following characteristics in our portfolio companies:
- Early-stage companies (often described as “Series A,” though stage labels can be arbitrary)
- Tech-enabled: Companies using technology to drive scale, improve efficiency, or increase access in large markets
- Trailing 12-month GAAP revenue greater than $500,000 with 100%+ year over year growth
- Current pre-money valuation between $10 million and $100 million
- We initially invest $500,000 to $5 million, leaving room for follow-on investment
- We seek initial ownership of 5% to 20%, non-controlling
- Through our investments, we aim to make our portfolio represent our best vision for the future
The impact of our brand, investing approach and communities are captured in the one feature that clearly distinguishes us from the crowd…
The Motley Fool Ventures Community (i.e. our Limited Partners)
Anecdotally, the typical venture capital fund, regardless of size, has around 20-40 limited partners, or LPs, in a single fund. Particularly in successful funds, these LPs are primarily pension funds, endowments, family offices and other funds. It’s a big check-small number strategy that is time tested and operationally efficient.
However, access for individual investors is limited.
In other words, in spite of accumulating impressive amounts of wealth, many retail investors find that access to professionally-managed private company investing is largely closed to them.
The Motley Fool has a long and proud history of being on the side of entrepreneur and individual investors, and Motley Fool Ventures is excited to play a role in next chapter of that history.
Hailing from 44 states, the District of Columbia, and four countries, our LPs are predominantly existing Motley Fool Members, with a select few hand-picked non-members.
Motley Fool Ventures has the collective wisdom of over 800 business people, entrepreneurs and advisors, ALL with a transparent and vested interest in the Motley Fool’s philosophy and approach. We are not compiling a group of people without a connection, but rather forming a community of venture investors.