To Infinity and Past: 500’s Subsequent Chapter

My journey with 500 started eight years in the past as a startup founder in Batch three.  On the time, 500 was a fledgling early stage investor simply starting to ascertain itself in Silicon Valley. 500 and its crew of underdogs have been making a reputation for themselves as scrappy traders prepared to take dangers in areas they believed different VCs neglected, and their boldness skyrocketed them into nationwide recognition. I used to be excited to hitch the trip.

Over the subsequent eight years, I grew with 500 as we scaled from a small group of passionate traders to the array of global-minded traders we’re right now. In 2013, I turned an entrepreneur-in-residence and helped run the accelerator batches when 500 expanded to San Francisco. When our crew determined to construct towards our radical world technique, I raised my hand to volunteer on the bottom, founding 500’s Korea fund in 2015. As my profession grew, so did my ardour for 500’s mission.

What we consider units 500 aside is our mission—to find and again the world’s most proficient entrepreneurs, assist them create profitable firms at scale, and construct thriving world ecosystems. Within the unique, Silicon Valley-centric world of VC, we strove to again various entrepreneurs all over the world and assist develop rising ecosystems that have been brimming with untapped potential. The truth that we invested in lots of worldwide firms invited a wholesome quantity of skepticism within the early days. At this time, our world portfolio and crew have turn into one in all our biggest strengths.

We’re excited to embrace that energy as the muse of 500’s technique going ahead, and proceed our mission to empower the best entrepreneurs all over the world.

Batch 24 of the San Francisco Seed Accelerator Program poses after Demo Day

Our Subsequent Chapter

Since 2010, 500’s portfolio has grown to over 2,200 firms spanning 74 international locations. Earlier this yr, we have been acknowledged because the #1 most energetic VC on this planet for 2018, beating different trade leaders by over 50% in world deal depend. Our seed accelerator program is now one of the acknowledged applications on this planet. We’ve additionally scaled our funding operations worldwide, rising from a single US-centric fund to 19 funds all over the world, with each world and regional focus in markets together with Southeast Asia, Latin America, MENA, and extra.

500 Luchardores Batch 9 (Left) 2019 MENA Founder Retreat (Proper)

In reflecting upon the robust world basis that has been constructed during the last eight years, our subsequent chapter goals to concentrate on world synchronization and coordinated useful resource deployment. We foresee two world traits that may outline early stage investing for the subsequent decade:

Worth creation the world over

Borderless customers

The subsequent technology of customers are rising up into a really borderless digital shopper market. Firms like TikTok have confirmed that buyers, each within the US and in the remainder of the world, are extra open to international platforms than ever earlier than. This may result in important adjustments within the template of a profitable early stage startup; adjustments we consider will closely favor globally-minded VCs, like 500, that possess robust intelligence in native markets.In parallel, we are actually seeing a rising variety of Silicon Valley founders beginning firms with a world viewers in thoughts from day one, much like founders all over the world. Whereas the demand is at present being pushed by steadily growing home consciousness of the worldwide alternative, we consider this may escalate right into a large-scale worry of lacking out on non-US markets throughout the subsequent few years.

As the remainder of the world leans into globalization, we consider 500 has two key benefits:

Early entrance into rising markets

Because the early days of 500, we invested in firms from exterior of the US on the premise that nice firms existed in all corners of the world. We doubled down on this wager by our thematic funds, beginning with 500 Luchadores in 2013 and 500 Durians in 2014. To this point, we’ve invested out of 14 thematic funds the world over with the assistance of our world companions. These early bets have helped 500 set up robust model recognition in rising markets, comparable to Latin America, MENA, Southeast Asia, and East Asia that are actually maturing into thriving ecosystems.

Scale and suppleness

We realized early on that we wanted to accomplice with native stakeholders to succeed in the dimensions required to be a really world VC. Due to our early groundwork partnering with governments, multinational firms, and regional influencers, we’ve constructed the infrastructure required to find and again founders, domesticate ecosystems, and deploy capital globally.

Now, greater than ever earlier than, 500 has a chance to redefine early stage investing as we enter a brand new, unprecedented period of worldwide early stage worth creation. We’re wanting ahead to sharing a number of thrilling initiatives all through the course of 2019 and past. As we embark on our subsequent chapter, I’m honored to tackle this new function at 500 and assist lead 500 alongside Christine and the remainder of the crew. We’ve achieved so much in simply 9 years, however we’re simply getting began.


Notice: Info on variety of funds and investments is approximated as of 12/31/2018 throughout the 500 Startups’ group and consists of investments made by all of the 500 Startups’ household of funds.

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