Innovation Venture Fund

The Innovation Venture Fund provides seed capital to help especially promising NYU founders scale their startups. Together with co-investors, the evergreen Fund provides needed capital, contacts with the entrepreneurial and venture communities, and practical management and marketing expertise to help NYU students, faculty and researchers transform ideas and inventions into thriving companies.

NYU's seed-stage venture capital fund invests exclusively in startups founded by, and/or commercializing technologies and intellectual property developed by, current NYU students, faculty, and researchers.

Learn more about our investment criteria below.

To request a meeting with our team and be considered for funding, submit a venture profile.

SUBMIT PROFILE
  • Tell Me More
    Founded in 2010, the NYU Innovation Venture Fund provides seed capital to launch startups based on technologies developed by the students, faculty and researchers while at NYU. The Fund will provide needed capital, contacts with the entrepreneurial and venture communities, and just as important, practical management and marketing expertise to transform NYU ideas and inventions into successful, growing companies.

    .

    The Fund makes approximately three to four investments per year in partnership with other angel investors and venture capital firms. The Fund will recycle investment returns from the successful sale of portfolio companies back into the University to finance further research and future ventures.
  • Criteria & Guidelines
    This opportunity is open to startups founded by current students, faculty, and researchers at any NYU school, college, or institute.

     

    The Fund seeks early stage businesses with inventions, discoveries, products or services that were developed in whole or in part at NYU, that have achieved proof of concept (or a prototype) and are ready for commercial product development. The fund does not invest in projects requiring further basic research.

    The Fund will consider proposals using the following evaluation criteria:

    • Technology has achieved proof of concept or prototype and is ready for commercial product development
    • Technology has important and sustainable points of differentiation
    • Identifiable customer(s) with a compelling value proposition
    • Viable regulatory approval and reimbursement strategy, if applicable
    • Market able to sustain $50 million/yr revenues within 5 yrs of market entry
    • Logical mechanism for transferring key know-how and IP
    • Investment required for exit is in the $1s or $10s of millions, not $100s
    • Business capable of generating venture scale returns (5-10x return on invested capital)
    • Founders with key skills & experience committed to venture success

    Don’t worry if you don’t know if you meet all the criteria laid out above. We will help you more fully assess the merits of your opportunity and connect you with the resources you need to progress your venture. Please reach out to us if you’re considering raising seed capital.

  • Portfolio Companies

    Kinvolved

    Combining technology tools and human interventions to change the deeply ingrained behaviors and external factors affecting student attendance, including poverty, racism, and socio-economic exclusion.

    Industry

    Education, Enterprise software

    Year Established

    2013

    Founder(s)

    • Miriam Altman (Wagner '13) |
    • Alexandra Meis (Wagner '13) |

    Website

    Fondu

    Share bite-sized restaurant reviews with friends. Fondu was aquired by Airbnb in October 2012

    Industry

    Consumer Services

    Year Established

    2010

    Founder(s)

    • Gauri Manglik (CAS '10)
    • Orion Burt (Stern '12)

    Participated in

    numberFire

    Next Generation Sports + Analytics

    Industry

    Consumer Services

    Year Established

    2010

    Founder(s)

    • Sean Weinstock (CAS '13)

    Website

    Participated in

    Vengo

    Redefining the concept of vending through its mini, interactive, and digital vending machines that serve not only consumer-packaged goods but also digital advertisements.

    Industry

    Hardware

    Year Established

    2012

    Founder(s)

    • Brian Shimmerlik (Stern '14) |

    Website

    Social

    Participated in

    TB Biosciences

    A point-of-care Tuberculosis test to replace the 125 year old smear test

    Industry

    Healthcare

    Year Established

    2013

    Founder(s)

    • William Abrams (Dentistry)
    • Suman Laal (Medicine)
    • Dan Malamud (Dentistry)
    • Susan Zolla-Pazner (Medicine)

    Orca Pharmaceuticals

    Oral drugs for the treatment of chronic inflammatory disease

    Industry

    Healthcare

    Year Established

    2012

    Founder(s)

    • Dan Littman (Medicine faculty)

    Participated in

    Brooklinen

    Brooklinen was built to deliver simple, beautiful home essentials at a fair
    price.

    Industry

    Ecommerce and retail

    Year Established

    2014

    Founder(s)

    • Rich Fulop (Stern '14) |
    • Vicki Fulop (CAS '07) |

    Website

    Social

    Clarifai

    Clarifai’s powerful image and video recognition solutions are built on the most advanced machine learning platform, and made easily accessible via API, device SDK, and on-premise, empowering businesses all over the world to build a new generation of intelligent applications.

    Industry

    Enterprise software

    Year Established

    2013

    Founder(s)

    • Matt Zeiler, PhD (Courant '14) |

    Website

    Social

    Participated in

    Framed Data

    Predictive machine learning products to help companies understand their users

    Industry

    Enterprise software

    Year Established

    2013

    Founder(s)

    • Thomson Nguyen (Courant) |

    Website

    Participated in

    Keen Home

    Making the home smarter, more efficient, and comfortable. By adding intelligence, automation, and beauty to these core areas, you will finally have a home that takes care of you, instead of the other way around.

    Industry

    Hardware

    Year Established

    2013

    Founder(s)

    • Nayeem Hussein (Stern '13) |
    • Ryan Fant (Stern '13) |

    Website

    Social

    Participated in

    Opentrons

    Provides an integrated suite of automation tools and protocols for life sciences scientist to conduct experiments to reduce the time to scientific insight.

    Industry

    Hardware

    Year Established

    2014

    Founder(s)

    • Will Canine (Tisch '14) |

    Website

    Social

    Vidcode

    A female-founded company with a mission to build a rigorous and creative online coding experience that appeals to all students. Vidcode is a 3rd-12th grade web-based JavaScript platform that teaches coding through media computation. Today, Vidcode is used by over a million students all over the world.

    Industry

    Education, Enterprise software

    Year Established

    2014

    Founder(s)

    • Allie Diracles (Tisch '14) |

    Website

    Social

    Participated in

    Cytodel

    CytoDel®, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company developing a platform based on botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) for delivery of drugs to neurons.

    Industry

    Healthcare

    Year Established

    2012

    Founder(s)

    • Phil Band, PhD (Medicine faculty) |
    • Edwin Vazquez-Cintron, PhD (Medicine '11) |
    • Konstantin Ichtchenko, PhD (Medicine faculty)

    Website

    KitSplit

    KitSplit is making gear rentals more enjoyable and affordable for a huge community of artists and filmmakers.

    Industry

    Ecommerce and retail

    Year Established

    2014

    Founder(s)

    • Lisbeth Kaufman (Stern '15) |
    • Kristina Budelis (Tisch '15) |
    • Ken Amarit (Tisch '15)

    Website

    Social

    Participated in

    PainQx

    Diagnostic/software company that has developed a next generation approach to objectively measure pain in humans.

    Industry

    Hardware, Healthcare

    Year Established

    2014

    Founder(s)

    • Leslie Prichep, PhD (Medicine faculty) |

    Website

    Pepper

    The first brand to design products specifically for women with small boobs, starting with bras.

    Industry

    Ecommerce and retail, Fashion

    Year Established

    2016

    Founder(s)

    • Lia Winograd (Stern '19) |

    Website

    Social

    BioDigital

    BioDigital was founded on the premise that 3D technology will transform the way we understand the human body. Allowing people to see inside the body, using interactive 3D technology, promises to have a profound impact on the way we comprehend our health.

    Industry

    Healthcare

    Year Established

    2002

    Founder(s)

    • Aaron Oliker (SPS faculty) |
    • John Qualter (Medicine faculty) |

    Website

    Transparent Healthcare

    Affordable health insurance alternative

    Industry

    Year Established

    2009

    Founder(s)

    • Betty Heiman |

    Social

    Participated in

    Prime Discoveries

    State-of-the-art technology platform integrates automation, machine learning, and advances in computational biology to accelerate microbiome discoveries.

    Industry

    Healthcare

    Year Established

    2016

    Founder(s)

    • Eugene Joseph (Stern '11) |

    Social

    Wrapbook

    Created by filmmakers and technologists, Wrapbook is a powerful suite of software for modern entertainment payroll, insurance, and production management.

    Industry

    Fintech

    Year Established

    2017

    Founder(s)

    • Ali Javid |

    Website

    Tagasauris

    Intelligent data platform for visual data

    Industry

    Enterprise software

    Year Established

    2010

    Founder(s)

    • Panos Ipeirotis (Stern faculty) |

    Website

    Social

  • Submission Guidelines
    To be considered, please carefully read the submission criteria and fill out a Venture Profile using the prompts below. Keep in mind this is intended to provide a preliminary overview of your concept and that an investment decision will not be made based solely upon the content of your profile.

     

    New Venture Concept

    • What existing problem/condition does your solution address and how is it addressed today/what is the standard of care?
    • Describe how this technology will be applied to create a product or service?
    • What makes your product/service unique and why might customers/patients buy or use it?
    • Who are the potential users/customers and buyers/payers for this, and how big is the market opportunity?

    Technology and Intellectual Property (IP)

    • What is the technology at the core of this venture?
    • What is the background of the invention/discovery and who are the principal investigators/developers?
    • What supporting data/evidence do you have that your invention/discovery works as claimed
    • What IP protection exists (provisional patents, patents, copyright, know-how, trade secrets, etc.) if any?
    Business Model

    • What are the potential sources of revenue for your venture (what is your business model) and which do you intend to pursue first?
    • How can you scale this into a large business (what is your sales & marketing strategy)?

    Competitive Analysis

    • Who/what are the existing and potential competitive alternatives to your solution?
    • What is your sustainable competitive advantage/barriers to entry?

    Regulatory Pathways (if applicable)

    • Describe the potential regulatory pathways (510K, PMA, OTC product, etc.) and any predicate devices if applicable.
    • Outline key clinical studies required to get regulatory approval.

    Management Team

    • What are the current team's qualifications for executing your plan?
    • What are the key skills and areas of expertise you need to add to the team?