Texas Startup Investors

Local and Foreign Startup Funds (Seed and Series A) investing in Texas

Historically, tech investment remained very local until companies reached maybe Series B or even Series C stage, at which point local investors typically syndicated with out-of-state deeper pockets. This had to do with a number of factors, one of the largest of which was just friction in communication and vetting out-of-state early-stage investments. See: Local v. Out of State VCs

But times have changed, and we’re seeing a lot more ‘cross-pollination’ between investors in one ecosystem and companies in others, with startups engaging as early as seed stage with foreign tech funds.  This allows companies to outreach to a broader, more diversified private capital market, increasing their likelihood of success. Entrepreneurs have new resources at their disposal to expand their personal networks to other cities, and investors too have new resources for expanding their pipelines beyond local circles.

I thought we’d use some of the information we’ve gathered internally at MEMN, as well as publicly available information, to start a list of (i) local investors [easy to find info], but also importantly (ii) non-local investors with at least one portfolio company in Texas.

I’ve limited this list to funds that are actually writing checks, because I’ve seen other lists with lots of duds; which wastes founders’ scarce time. If we’ve missed someone active, please by all means e-mail me, or post a comment, with information and I will add it. Also, as we see more funds put capital into our clients, or hear of other deals in the market, I will update the list as well.

Also, see The Ranking Algorithm for a primer on investor intros and Nailing Your Investor Intros. Also What it will take to raise $500K. Usually to raise money from anyone on this list, you’ll first need to have gained market traction, with bootstrap funds, friend and family, and/or (capital A) Angel money. These are NOT people you approach with just an idea and a deck. The funds listed are in no particular order.

Active Texas Funds and Angel Groups [Local, $100K+ Checks]

These are truly active VC and Seed Funds located in Texas. Obviously, due to proximity, any Texas tech startup looking to raise a seed or Series A round should be trying to connect with them, if your market/business profile matches their investment thesis (which is usually stated on their website and/or discernible from their portfolio). And for gaining a clear understanding of their culture and approach to Founder-Investor relationships, their portfolio founders should be reachable within your network. See: VCs and Founder CEOs: Coaching v. Undermining.

Active Foreign Funds with Portfolio Companies in Texas [Seed or Series A, $100K-$1MM+ Checks]

The first investment for a foreign fund entering a new market is its largest hurdle. Once that investment is made, it’s a lot easier to justify a second or third. These funds have already signaled their willingness to invest in Texas by making a material seed or Series A investment in at least one local company, which makes them far more worth devoting time to than others. In my experience, companies have the greatest success when closing on a combination of local and out-of-state capital, particularly when the out-of-state relationships were sourced by the founder team.

Active Foreign Funds with Portfolio Companies in Texas [Series A+ only]

Similar to the prior list, these are out-of-state funds with at least one portfolio company in Texas. However, based on data we’ve seen their ‘threshold’ for being willing to write a TX check is closer to a Series A lead investment (7-figures), including the business metrics that entails. They should be approached at a later stage than the prior-listed funds, all of which are likely to look at seed stage companies.