The True Ventures team has just raised $205 Million for their latest investment fund. The fund has a local office in Great Falls, VA in a spot that is more like a small town law firm than the high end business district digs of most VC’s in the area. That isn’t all that is different. They are making some very smart bets.
A few years ago I had lunch with founding member John Burke at a food joint by their offices. The place made me feel like I was in a different time, maybe 100 years back. John is a very accomplished guy who is someone that you would want in your corner if you were going into a negotiation or sales pitch or a business deal of just about any sort. If you are looking for an investor then you might want to talk to these guys.
Note that they like to get involved early and that while a lot of people in town wear the VC label, these guys are the real deal. If you are out there looking for an investor then put these guys on your list.
The interesting thing is that True Ventures hasn’t made that many investments in Washington area startups. Here is the short list: appsavvy (spun out of freewebs.com a few years back, but based in Manhattan and Chicago), 410 Labs (Baltimore and Bethesda based with founders including Dave Troy and Matt Koll, both veterans), and Spree Commerce (DC based, a creation of Rails Dog which is a Ruby on Rails software consulting firm). All of these teams are lead by really smart guys who have success stories behind them.
We hope to see a few more DC startups represented in their upcoming deals.