Dec 10, 2019 On Our Blog

500’s Past & Present: Betting on International Startups

In 2010, 500 Startups started as a new kind of venture capital firm in Silicon Valley with a contrarian belief that talent can come from anywhere in the world. Back then, very few venture capital firms in the valley were focused on much outside of our collection of cities within the San Francisco Bay area. ”If you look at our early team, our DNA has always been very global with experience growing up abroad or working internationally. So it really comes down to the thing that we always say which is that we always believed from day one that there are brilliant startups all over the world, but opportunity isn’t universal.” – Tim Chae, Managing Partner at 500 As a …


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Sep 24, 2019 On Our Blog

Welcome Tony Wang as 500’s New Managing Partner

500 centers itself around supporting bold, innovative founders around the world. As venture dollars increasingly shift towards being deployed outside of the U.S., firms need to be thinking about their strategy to manage the trend towards globalization. 500 began making bets outside of Silicon Valley and outside of the U.S. back in 2010. Today, in 2019, 49% of our overall portfolio hails from outside the U.S. and spans more than 75 countries around the world.  Earlier this year, I expressed that the 500 of the future is just getting started, and announced Courtney Powell joining as 500’s new COO. I am thrilled to be sharing more good news today and welcome Tony Wang as our new Managing Partner. In this …


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Jul 9, 2019 On Our Blog

500 Startups & Misk Innovation to Launch Second Batch of the Misk 500 Accelerator Program

Applications are now open for Batch 2 of the Misk 500 Accelerator Program 500 Startups and Misk Innovation will host the second batch of its accelerator program based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to fuel startups throughout the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region.  Batch 2 of the Misk 500 Accelerator Program will bring experts from Silicon Valley and beyond to educate 15-20 early-stage startups from MENA. The program will consist of 14 weeks of mentorship and workshops that will have an emphasis on growth hacking techniques, product design, and fundraising. In addition to the educational component of the program, participants will have a unique opportunity to make long-lasting connections with investors and corporate partners from the region.  Following the …


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Feb 5, 2019 On Our Blog

Announcing the “MENA Dojo” Series A Program Batch 3 launch

It’s going to be quite busy this year in the MENA region! In line with our objective to help develop the regional ecosystem, we are pleased to announce that we’re opening the applications for the third batch of our annual 500 Startups MENA Dojo Series A Program, in partnership with Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP). The MENA Dojo Series A Program is for startups that have reached a certain level of scale and are likely to raise a Series A in the next six to nine months. We will be bringing in a roster of mentors from our Silicon Valley and global team focused on instilling a growth mindset, growth hacking and marketing techniques. The program is one-to-one mentorship driven, which …


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Oct 31, 2018 On Our Blog

Private Jets, Smart Pill Bottles, Blockchain, & More: Meet the Startups of Batch 24

Batch 24 has officially kicked off in San Francisco, and we’re so excited to welcome these new companies into our 500 family. From personal jets to AR glasses to period underwear, the collection of companies we’ve invested in this batch are as unique and innovative as the founders that built them. By the numbers: This batch has 21 companies. 40% of Batch 24 companies have a female founder. 50% have a Black, Mixed, or Latinx founder. 31% have a company based outside of the US. The Batch 24 companies are headquartered amongst 8 countries: Chile, France, Hong Kong, Nigeria, Singapore, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States. Out of the Batch 24 companies, 27% of will be on our blockchain track, 18% …


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Sep 17, 2018 On Our Blog

PreMoney 2018: Meet Garry Tan, the Former YC Partner Forging his own Path

If you don’t know who Garry Tan is yet, you will soon—the investor was just name dropped on Forbes’ 2018 Midas Brink List of Venture Capital’s biggest up-and-comers. He’s making big waves in the investment world and we’re thrilled to have him lined up to speak at our PreMoney Investor Conference on October 2nd. Tan was previously a partner at Y-Combinator and is now the cofounder of Initialized Capital, an early-stage seed fund he started with Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian. Initialized Capital was the earliest investor in trailblazers like Coinbase and Instacart, so Tan knows a thing or two about spotting the “it factor” in young companies. Not Your Average VC While many big investors come from a more buttoned-up business world, Tan boasts an impressive …


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Sep 12, 2018 On Our Blog

Ann Miura-Ko: Raising the Bar for Women VCs Headlining PreMoney 2018

The pioneer in female-forward investing is one of the keynote speakers at our upcoming PreMoney Investor Conference on October 2nd, and she’s someone we’re certain you won’t want to miss. Miura-Ko has a PhD from Stanford, a Bachelor’s from Yale, and this year she was on the cover of Forbes—but those are only a small handful of the notable credentials that make her one of the most admirable investors in the game. She’s got a keen ability to spot a unicorn in its early stages, she was an early investor in Lyft, and she has a solid spot on Forbes 2018 Midas List—a roundup of the top 100 venture capitalists in the world. The Most Powerful Woman in Startups Back in …


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Apr 3, 2018 On Our Blog

500 Closes Strategic Investment with ADFG

500’s mission is an ambitious one. To discover and back the world’s most talented entrepreneurs, create successful companies at scale, and build thriving global ecosystems. Over the past eight years, 500 has accomplished a great deal. Today we manage over $400 million in committed capital and have invested in over 2,000 companies across more than 60 countries around the world, as well as mentored and coached thousands of founders through our Seed and Series A Programs. Notable 500 family include Twilio (NYSE: TWLO), SendGrid (NASDAQ: SEND), Credit Karma, Canva, Grab, Carousell, Udemy, and Talkdesk. In the early days, many wondered why we were so bullish on going global and investing outside of Silicon Valley. As the world gets smaller, and …


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Mar 26, 2018 On Our Blog

500 & Huobi Labs Proudly Presents Our Latest Blockchain Track Companies

The 500 Blockchain team and Huobi Labs have selected three blockchain companies to join our blockchain track program. “We have received hundreds of super qualified applications since announcing the 500 Blockchain Track program last month. It’s amazing to see so many talented entrepreneurs out there building blockchain related companies and I’m really excited about the future of the blockchain ecosystem,” said Edith Yeung, partner at 500 Startups. Since this is our first pilot of a blockchain track program, we only had the opportunity to work with a small number of companies. Our goal is to collaborate closely with each startup,  focusing on key areas including: community building, go-to-market strategies, corporate partnerships, and connections with all our mentors from the blockchain …


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Feb 4, 2018 On Our Blog

The MENA Ecosystem: The Year Ahead

2017 was a landmark year for the MENA startup ecosystem. That hectic pace of development has continued, even accelerated in the first month of 2018. Having been in the MENA startup space in one form or another since 2007, looking back on what has happened in the past year astonishes me. The rapid pace of development, growth and maturity that took place over the last year is astounding. So, below I wanted to document a few of the main developments I’ve seen from my personal perspective in 2017, which I hope to see continue in 2018. An increasing government focus on entrepreneurship TL;DR – Almost every government across the MENA region has woken up and is actively supporting the startup …


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