Investing in Mind-Training

Charlie Hartwell
Mar 19, 2018 · 3 min read
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Entrepreneurs continuously ask me, “What is Bridge Builders Collaborative looking for in investments?” Having made ten investments over the past several years, I can offer the following considerations as part of our decision making process:

1. We are investors in mind-training. We look for companies whose product or service helps people connect more deeply to themselves, so they can live happier, healthier lives. We look for enterprises with a social mission that we believe can impact a large number of people. Some examples of our investments include: companies improving mind-training through mindfulness practices, platforms offering access to wisdom, innovations addressing mental and behavioral health, technology increasing training outcomes through a better learning platform and assessments, and a platform to support finding relationships and connection.

2. We typically invest in Series A or Series B offerings. Our capital is provided to entrepreneurs who have a clear strategy to high growth and have tested their business model to the point we can help the enterprise to scale. Typically we look for companies that have at least $1 M in revenue.

3. We invest in collaborative, authentic leaders who are passionate about their missions. We work best with entrepreneurs who are willing to listen to our counsel and have managed egos. Our goal is to be partners with our companies.

4. Companies of interest have significant sustainable points of difference from others in the marketplace. Those points of difference can vary from intellectual property, to differentiated approaches, to proven scientific validity, to strong brand recognition, to comprehensive data sets.

5. Scientific validity is very important. Our intention is to back companies that have great science that underpins their products or services.

6. While we are focused on high growth businesess, we also focus on cash flow. We look for credible pathways to positive cash flow.

7. Finally, we consider the distribution channels the company is pursuing along with their expertise in areas in which they want their products to sell. We have invested in both B2C, B2B, and B2B2C companies. We have companies that sell into retail channels, through the app store, into large corporations, into insurance companies, and into the medical system. Each of these channels acts differently, and we want to ensure the companies are experienced in selling into those channels or have the capacity to pivot.

As a group of experienced, collaborative, and compassionate investors, we believe we add four things to our investments:

  1. Counsel — Bridge Builders Collaborative partners have deep business experience and can help entrepreneurs by sharing their wisdom and practical experience.
  2. Connections — We have access to a wide range of connections that can support entrepreneurs.
  3. Credibility — We are well known as a value added investor in the mind-training ecosystem.
  4. Cash — While entrepreneurs might believe this is our most valuable contribution, we belive it is our least.

To learn more, check out our portfolio companies.

Learn more about Charlie at ShiftIt Institute and check out Bridge Builders Collaborative partners and portfolio. Follow Charlie on LinkedIn and Twitter @ShiftIt_Inst.

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