What We Do
We are a venture capital firm that invests in early-stage tech companies and spearheads their communications.
We invest in game-changers. These are disruptive, impactful businesses that want to fundamentally change industries and solve some of today’s biggest challenges – social, business, or otherwise. Using our years of marketing and communications expertise, we actively help our companies grow by crafting compelling stories and telling those stories to the world.
Our name was inspired by Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, who once explained that as soon as a business reaches Day Two, it’s all over. We believe in living every day and making every decision as if it is Day One.
Every company we invest in embodies the Day One spirit.
What we’re looking for
We approach venture capital as the cultivation of a goal-centric community, one in which our partners, advisors, and startup founders are united in a shared vision of a better world. The companies we invest in should feel at home in our community and also fall into at least one of the following three categories:
Companies reaching for the stars with hard-to-imitate technology in emerging fields such as machine learning, AR/VR, marketplaces, fintech, and edtech.
Companies seeking to fundamentally change areas such as employment and healthcare through technical innovation in order to serve modern needs.
Companies that live harmoniously with their community — they rely on an active and loyal audience, who in turn relies on them.
We’re not just investors
We’re team members who support our portfolio companies’ growth and success by shaping and telling their stories. We are always on your side as a founder.
What We Offer
We focus on early-stage companies where we invest on average $100K-$1M, usually in seed and series A rounds. We often work with leading VCs, are ready for follow-on investments, and employ a negotiable deal structure. We make quick decisions and don’t leave you waiting in the dark.
Marketing / PR
We’re the only firm that supports its portfolio companies in marketing and communications, spearheading your public relations activities at the seed and Series A stages. We’ll advise you when it’s the right time to hire an in-house professional or an agency and help you hire and manage them.
We use our experience and extensive network to counsel our companies in areas beyond marketing and communications as well, including recruitment and sales. We take an active role by introducing you to potential clients, team members, and partners.
We have a strong network of investors in the US, Europe, and Asia. Other investors in our portfolio companies include Greylock, Index, Bloomberg Beta, NEA, Homebrew, Social Capital, Sherpa, Founders Fund, and others. Our introductions have resulted in over 30 portfolio company investments in just one year.
WHAT OUR FOUNDERS SAY
Damian Langere, CEO @ Domuso
“Day One Ventures has been one of our most helpful investors. When they invest in a company, they truly back the founders by actively providing not just communications expertise, but results. Since working with Day One, we've received high impact press coverage, gained access to top-tier professional events, and made new connections that have accelerated our growth. As a founder, you feel that they are there for you from the beginning until the very end.”
Andrew Kouri, CEO @ lvl5
“Working with the folks at Day One Ventures has been an incredible privilege for lvl5 and for me. They really make a point to get to know me as a founder and support me in ways that other investors don't. If you're fortunate enough to have Day One invest in your company, their backing extends far beyond the check – the team is comprised of top-notch PR experts, well-connected to entrepreneurs across the globe, and determined to help in any way possible. I consider myself very lucky to have Day One on my side.”
Mikhail Naumov, President @ DigitalGenius
“Day One is one of the most helpful partners. In addition to usual support provided by venture capital firms, Day One takes an active role in helping portfolio companies develop a communications strategy, secure key media coverage, and amplify their message during critical points in the company's growth cycle.”
Andrey Kazakov, CEO @ Acquired
“We are lucky and blessed to have Day One Ventures as our investors. They are amazing partners that help with all aspects of our business and handle PR and communications like no other – it really makes us stand out in the industry.”
Yahya Mokhtarzada, CEO @ Truebill
“Day One Ventures is outstanding when it comes to their ability and willingness to provide support at an operational level. The team took an active role in helping us with communications not just by providing strategic advice, but by directly securing coverage for us in top-tier media. As the founder of a Day One portfolio company, you feel like the firm is always on your side. They don't dictate what you should do but act as a true partner working toward the same goal – growing your company.”
Nathaniel Barling, CEO @ Knowhere News
“Already a hugely valuable seed investor, in the run up to and since our April 2018 launch, Day One Ventures have become an integral part of our team. Their PR counsel has been second to none in both strategic input and execution. Communications with the team have been seamless, enabling us to build a powerful and nuanced message in a particularly short time-frame, resulting in a press response that exceeded expectations. It’s a privilege to be working with Natalie and Masha and I’m looking forward to continuing to build our story, brand, and position in the public consciousness alongside them.”
Through investing, fundraising, counseling, and communications initiatives, we’ve helped our portfolio companies flourish.
True Customer Obsession
The greatest companies are built around their customers. Your technology, your vision, your business model – these only make a difference if they truly appeal to your customer. You may have great user acquisition, but what is it worth if you’re losing customers even faster?
Customers are always dissatisfied, they always desire more, even if they aren’t aware of it. The most successful companies are the ones that anticipate customer demand, delivering something they didn’t know they needed.
Embrace External Trends
Startups exist in the real world and are affected by what happens in the industry on a daily basis. Have a clear vision for where your space is going, predict market trends, and stay tapped into the newest innovations, otherwise one day you might realize that you’ve created a Yahoo.
Experiment, try and fail, pivot if needed, but stay two steps ahead of the curve.
As startups begin to see success, there’s a tendency to manage on autopilot. Business processes become more important than outcomes. You should treat every complication that arises as if it’s the first time you’re encountering it. Don’t default to existing processes out of habit.
High-Velocity Decision Making
Speed is critical to innovation. You need to make good decisions, and you need to make them fast. This isn’t an easy balance to strike, but the best leaders intelligently combine intuition and gut instinct with experience and a rock-solid rationale. You should be thoughtful but quick to take action.
Your company should be at the point where PR and marketing will move the needle. That’s when our team can add the most value and accelerate your growth. We focus on seed stage and series A companies that have a viable product with at least initial customers or users. While we prefer startups that already have revenue, we sometimes invest in earlier stages.
The Day One Ventures team is passionate about helping visionary risk-takers find success by putting them at the nexus of investing and storytelling.
Senior Partner at Runa Capital. Ilya has more than 20 years of experience as serial entrepreneur and investor. He is a co-founder of several global enterprise software companies including Acronis, Parallels, Rolsen and Acumatica.
A serial entrepreneur, the co-founder, CEO and chairman of the board of Acronis, a global data protection company, and the senior founding partner of Runa Capital, a technology investment firm.
Head of Google Cloud startup program. Investor at Blumberg Capital and Redpoint. He has invested in over 50 startups across sectors and has over a decade of seed stage investing and operations experience. He was one of the first investors in Instacart.
Riccardo Di Blasio
With the last 8 years spent in Silicon Valley, Di Blasio accrued more than 25+ years in the technology industry with key executive roles at companies like EMC Corp. and VMware and currently running global partner sales for cloud platforms at DXC Technology.
Head of Finance and Accounting at Robinhood. Nadia discovered her passion for fintech through her experience at Square, where she joined a small team to build accounting practices, and later, was a key member for the IPO process.
Luis A. Navia
Luis has served on Verizon’s Content Strategy and Acquisitions Team focused on emerging technology and digital media. He also has worked for Fortune 50 Companies, as a primary delegate manager for a Presidential nominee, and led multiple events with TEDx.
In the Press
While many companies are using chatbots and other forms of automation to manage their communication with customers, Boston-based Tone is betting that humans will remain a key part of the equation.
“Diversity Is The Foundation For An Antifragile Portfolio,” Says Day One Ventures Founder Masha Drokova
Drokova says 30% of Day One’s first fund ($20 million) was invested in founders of color and 33% in impact startups.
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