Why We Can Afford It. …to go seed-funding.

George Salapa
Jan 19, 2019 · 5 min read

Venture Capital began in 1960s, as a way for the ultra-rich (Rockefellers) to bet on the fortunes of the growing number of business founders that emerged after the WWII. These were the post-war boom years when it seemed that the American Dream might just be a real thing. One of the very first VC firms was Venrock Associates founded by the Rockefellers.

“If you can’t invent the future, the next best thing is to fund it.”

John Doerr, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

Good ideas tend to proliferate. The VC premise was simple: if you spread your money across many (many) ventures, the chances are that one will turn out to be an immense success and ‘pay the bill’ for the rest (the fails). Nothing has really changed about this basic idea, other than that the chances of success have become minimal thanks to the colossal inflow of capital.

Looking at the U.S. alone, which is, after all, the cradle of the VC industry and the country that is perhaps most in love with its tech-scene, reveals just how significant was the growth of capital in the VC sector.

This growth naturally coincides with falling success rates, as the sector is becoming more crowded. The report by CB Insights shows that the rate of success if painfully low is sure to lead to more crowding, as VC firms prefer fewer larger deals. The odds of becoming a unicorn are about 1%, and nearly 67% of ‘startups stall at some point in the VC process and fail to exit or raise follow-on funding’.

Black box.

There is a certain degree of perversity wired into the VC business model. Or as the Harvard Business Review‘s guide to VC explains, the financial incentive for partners in the VC firm is to manage as much money as possible. This does then naturally and inevitably lead to a lack of time and focus. It only makes sense that most neglected are the early-stage companies. Seed-stage investing tends to be associated with a certain lottery mentality (‘spray and pray’), when VCs both cannot and do not care.

Networking … (not) working

Neither of those two factors are necessarily mastered by a typical seed-stage VC, which tends to be smaller in size, and will most likely not see successful exits from its investments before a long time. Indeed, those seed-stage VCs that earn stripes for strong performance do get usually promoted higher up the rank, which necessitates their growth … this is because they will attract a much larger investor interest for their second or later funds, which narrows their investment thesis to late-stage deals.

Go wild.

Revolution !

Its a curse-blessing, and an absolute revolution for smaller seed-stage VCs. Think about it: a fund manager can no longer be a passive by-stander, but has to openly speak about the companies that he/she invests in. Given that the companies of late-stage VCs are more mature, they are often deeply involved in the exit plans and deal-making, the details of which have to be kept private. Late-stage VCs simply wouldn’t talk too much. They straight up can’t.

Seed-stage VCs, in contrary, usually have a longer runway before they see any exits or deals happen, so they can be much more outspoken about their investments. They can give a real boost to their companies through some public exposure.


bardicredit, the initiator of bardiventures, and the turnkey fund tokenization consultancy, is a member of the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA), a global association of hedge funds, private equity and VC funds with more than $2 trillion under management.


Tokenized EU-approved venture capital fund.

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