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Fourward Ventures raising $50M fund

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May 3, 2023
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Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

Fourward Ventures is raising a first fund of $50 million to invest in consumer-driven startups, founder William Ward tells Axios exclusively.

Why it matters: In a difficult equity-raising environment, firms like Fourward may have the pick of the litter when it comes to investing.

  • Ward says the Los Angeles-based firm has vetted 407 deals since May of last year, demonstrating the demand for capital.

Details: Half the fund has already been raised, while the other half is on track to close by Sept. 15, Ward says.

  • The capital is being raised from a mix of family offices, financiers and celebrities.
  • Though the fund is in the process of being raised, it already inked its ninth deal earlier this week.
  • Fourward invests between $250,000 and $3 million per deal and in either the seed, Series A or Series B rounds.

Catch up fast: Targets tend to be in the categories of either health and wellness, sustainability, media tech or consumer, Ward says.

  • Investments by the firm include Partake, an allergen-free food company on track to generate $34 million in revenue this year.
  • The firm also placed a bet on Goodles, a maker of a high-protein version of macaroni and cheese co-founded by actress Gal Gadot and on track to generate $10 million in sales.

Of note: Alongside being an investor, Ward is also an entertainment manager, and his client roster at one point included Chris Hemsworth.

  • Ward partnered with the actor and an Australia-based PE firm to build the digital fitness platform Centr.
  • That business was sold to HighPost Capital for an enterprise value of more than $200 million last year.
  • While Ward says he is focusing on venture investment, he will maintain his entertainment management business and music publishing company.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect that Fourward has corrected its revenue figure for Partake, stating that it is $34 million (not $18 million).

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