5 Places New York City Startups Should Go for Funding

The NYC investment ecosystem is massive. An April funding report showed NYC had a whopping 36% share of total US funding during April 2017. On the heels of that report, you can now also visualize those relationships between startups and investors — within NYC — in an interactive map.

If you’re curious just how many NYC-based investors are putting money into NYC-based startups, this image alone says it all:

VentureMap NYC is a network visualization of the relationships between investors — angels, VCs, and accelerators/incubators are on the outside of the map, with startups on the inside of the map. The grey background you see is actually many lines which connect startup to investor. Suffice it to say, there are more lines than white space. Let’s zoom in.

On the map, you can navigate more than 3,000 investments but that’s a lot of data. Let’s look at some of the trends — and of most importance to this audience — where a startup should begin when venturing into the fundraising process.

1. Angel investors are prominent

Angel investors have made many investments in New York City, as evidence by the sheer number of connections on this map. What’s even more interesting is the overlap between super connected and successful angel investors who ultimately end up investing via a fund or angel group.

There are a few notable angel investors we should point out — those with the most investments back into businesses in the city:

Adam Rothenberg, currently partner at BoxGroup, has made well over 50 angel investments into startups like Vine, Handy, Fab, Blue Apron, and more.

David Tisch, another partner at BoxGroup, is equally as active on the scene with investments into ClassPass, SplashThat, Pilot, Oyster, and more. David and Adam both started as super angels who now have a fund.

John Borthwick, another super angel turned angel group, is the CEO and co-founder of Betaworks. He has an impressive roster of angel investments into companies like Giphy, Venmo, Bitly, Tumblr, and more.

Andrew Boszhardt, Jr. is a managing partner at Great Oaks Venture Capital but he has his hands in a number of deals in companies like Bonobos, Plated, Warby Parker, and more.

Gary Vaynerchuk is well known for his angel investments — here’s all the ones he’s made in NYC, including Managed by Q, Birchbox, Songza, MakeSpace, and more.

2. Angel groups are just as active

Angel groups are active in the NYC ecosystem as well, and a great option for startups looking to engage multiple angels at once. Here’s a few to consider given their activity in NYC:

Founded in 2004, New York Angels is one of the largest and most active technology-focused angel investment organizations. They’ve backed Waywire Networks, BeautyBooked, AllTheRooms, Moven, and more. Here’s a quick snapshot of their activity:

BoxGroup is a boutique angel fund managed by David Tisch and Adam Rothenberg. While they try to only invest in NYC, LA, and San Francisco, they will invest in a startup from anywhere if they think the technology is disruptive enough. Here’s some of their NYC investments, including Vine, Umi Kitchen, Dasher, Fundera, Warby Parker, Trello, and more.

3. Accelerators are few but mighty

While there are fewer accelerators and incubators than VCs or angels & angel investor groups, they have huge portfolios and present equally huge opportunities for NYC-based startups.

Here’s a teardown on a few that jump out on VentureMap NYC:

Grand Central Tech has an impressive roster of local startups, including Ziel, SpokenLayer, Nineteenth Amendment, Modalyst, Hopscotch, and more.

betaworks is a startup-studio based in NYC with a local portfolio of tech, art, and science-based startups such as Giphy, Venmo, Bitly, ideeli, OMGPOP, Songkick, Someecards, Tumblr, and more.

Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator is an early stage fund and technology accelerator located in New York City that runs two, four month programs per year with initial funding at $100,000. Some local portfolio companies include Makers Alley, Wizpert, Payfully, DocFlight, and more.

4. NYC VCs are loyal to NYC startups

As expected, VCs have a strong presence on the NYC investment scene. They also invest in a lot of startups based in NYC which is great news for young businesses in search of connections to capital.

Here are the VC firms that are based in NYC that invest in a large amount of hometown startups:

RRE Ventures is known for being a strategic and long-term lead investor with a strong emphasis on NYC businesses and entrepreneurs. They’re one of the area’s most active investors with deals in Buzzfeed, Venmo, Bitly, Datadog, Business Insider, The Dodo, Huffington Post, and more.

Great Oaks VC is one of the most active seed stage venture firms in the US. The team has backed more than 300 businesses with many based in NYC, such as Tidal Labs, The Muse, Plated, OkCupid, and more.

Union Square Ventures, with well-known founders like Fred Wilson and Albert Wenger, invest heavily in NYC startups such as Meetup, MongoDB, FourSquare, Codeacademy, Tumblr, and more.

5. The ecosystem is big but there’s still room for growth and diversification

As you can see from above, a lot of investors are putting a lot of money into a lot of the same startups. We tried to pull out a few areas of opportunity in tech ecosystem where there’s potential for capital infusions into local startups.

Bowery Capital is an early-stage venture capital investor focused exclusively on founders looking to modernize business through technology. Their thesis supports portfolio companies with early revenue and customer growth that are focused on internet natives who will drive purchasing decisions over the next 10 years. They raised a $60M fund at the end of 2016 with around five investments since then. They focus mostly on seed and series A investments, and their portfolio includes ActionIQ, Moat, mParticle, and more.

ff Venture Capital bills itself as the most engaged technology venture capital firm in New York City. It is one of the best performing seed- and early-stage venture capital firms investing in areas such as cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, machine learning, drones, enterprise cloud software, and crowdfunding. In June 2016, it launched a new opportunistic fund, looking to raise $150m which follows the close of a nearly $54m fourth fund in May 2016.

Tribeca Venture Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm that partners with world class entrepreneurs in the NYC area leveraging emerging technologies. They raised a $107M funding in February 2016 and their portfolio includes companies like ShopKeep, AppNexus, Crowdtap, Hive Technology, and more.

The mission of VentureMap is to break down the barriers you face when entering the startup ecosystem. By displaying investor-startup connections, we hope you’re one step closer to finding the best investment relationship that will bring your business to life.

But don’t take our word for it… still hungry for NYC investment data & network visualizations? Check out VentureMap NYC for yourself.

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