Announcing our Fourth Partner at NextView

David, Lee, and I are very excited to announce that Melody Koh is now officially our fourth Partner at NextView and will lead our New York office.

For those of you who have known us for a while, you know that this is major step for our firm. When we started NextView, it was unclear whether we would expand the partnership or remain a close-knit team of three. We believe that the venture capital business does not scale and that moving with speed and shared ownership was one of our major competitive advantages. Because of this, we always knew that the bar for adding to our team would be exceedingly high or may not ever happen at all.

There are several exciting factors that have brought us to this point today.

The first and most obvious is that Melody is outstanding and a rising star. This will come to no surprise to anyone who has worked with her directly, either as an investor or as an operator. Although we have known Melody for a long time, we seriously started to get re-engaged with her when we were trying to recruit her to lead product for one of our fastest growing portfolio companies. Her reputation as an ambitious and highly effective operator was well known, and we loved that she had experience both as a struggling founder and a leader in a blitzscaling company. When she shared that she was actually considering a move back to an investment role, we jumped at the opportunity to bring her into the NextView family as a Venture Partner. Since joining us in 2017, Melody has had a dramatic impact on our firm, and has elevated our sourcing, decision-making, and ability help drive the success of our portfolio companies. She has also just been a great friend and collaborator, and someone we all feel will help us continue to level-up NextView with for many years.

Second, Melody came to the conviction that being a high-conviction, hands-on early stage investor was the right long-term path for her. She has shared her thoughts here in her own words, so I’d recommend you heading over to her blog.

Third, we believe that now is time to fully capitalize on the magic that is happening in the entrepreneurial ecosystem in New York. The ecosystem in New York has never been stronger, with blockbuster exits in a broad set of sectors and hundreds of high growth companies developing thousands of extraordinarily talented operators and future founders for decades to come. And yet, there is an unusual disconnect in the early stage investment market, as a number of major players in the early-stage landscape have moved or scaled back their efforts and some of the larger funds have moved upstream to later stage opportunities. As vibrant as the New York ecosystem is, it is actually quite underserved in terms of world-class lead investors who will really partner with founders early. For this reason, we’ve been particularly active in this region in recent years, with just under 50% of our recent portfolio based in NY and with each partner having led multiple investments in the city. And as we’ve said before, we believe that innovation is becoming more broadly distributed, and we are excited to be able to support the vibrant founder ecosystems in our home cities of New York and Boston while leveraging those tentpoles to pursue companies within our Everyday Economy theme across the country.

We are so excited to be entering the next phase in NextView’s journey with Melody as a core member of the partnership. We are also excited that founders will have the opportunity to work with someone at NextView with her level of intellectual firepower and commitment to supporting the founder journey. If you know Melody, please congratulate her on this exciting step! If you don’t, you can follow her on medium here or Twitter here. Also, thanks to Alex Konrad and Forbes for his coverage here.