Jan 3, 2024 - Business

O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures is reborn to back bootstrapped companies

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Venture firm O'Reilly AlphaTech Ventures has rebranded to INDIE, and is raising up to $50 million for a fund that will focus exclusively on backing bootstrapped companies.

Why it matters: The firm launched an experiment with this investing approach in 2015, but then wound it down amid limited partner discontent.

The big picture: "With the new fund, we'll focus on leading or co-leading a company's first, and ideally last, round of funding," managing director Bryce Roberts wrote.

  • The firm has made investments from $50,000 to $2 million and says it can write smaller or bigger checks, and is flexible on stage and structure.

Zooming in: Most of INDIE's limited partners are new, per Roberts.

  • When OATV raised its third fund, with a focus on its Indie.VC program, 80% of the investor base fled. It raised $25 million, compared to the $85 million for its prior fund.
  • INDIE's first fund is expected to close at between $40 million and $50 million, according to a source familiar with the fundraising plans.

Zooming out: "If the unicorn era taught us one thing, it's that more isn't always the answer," managing director Roberts wrote in a recent blog post predicting a new era of leaner, profit-oriented startups.

  • "More money doesn't solve fundamental problems. More people don't move faster. More features don't fix product market fit."

The bottom line: 2021's boom times killed Indie.VC, but the subsequent hangover is giving it a second life.

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