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Tuesday
Sep242013

LAUNCH's first fund, AngelList Syndicates & $100k prize for LAUNCH Mobile & Wearables

I’m super excited that I’ve closed my first formal angel investing fund: The LAUNCH Fund I. Additionally, I’ve started one of the first AngelList ‘Syndicates’ (more on that below).

The fund started when David Sacks and I each committed $250k over five years to the winners of the LAUNCH Festival, but it quickly grew to include a list of my good friends. On average, I’ve got 10-year (or longer) relationships with each of the members of the fund (we are leaving it up to the LPs to disclose that they’re in the fund, if they want to).

Over the next five years, we will invest $100-250k in 50-100 startups.

Next week, at the LAUNCH Mobile & Wearables event there will be a $100,000 ‘investment prize.’

[ Note: LAUNCH Mobile & Wearables is on Sept 30 & Oct 1st in San Francisco at the Metreon City View. A couple of tickets are left, use FOJ to get 20% off here: http://mobile.launch.co ]

What is an investment prize, you ask? Well, it’s a commitment from me to invest $100k in one of the startups there.

Of course, it’s not binding, as the startups need to want me as an investor, and we have to be able to come to terms, but I’m happy to say we came to terms with three of the winners from the LAUNCH Festival back in March 2013 (Wizzywig, AdStage and Boxbee).

At the LAUNCH Hackathon on November 8-10, I will be putting up another $100,000 ‘investment prize’ (at least). The hackathon is brought to you by the fine folks at Capital One, Yammer, Facebook, Parse, Pearson, Amazon & Google.

We already have over 300 developers signed up (we check their code on github – so no spectators!), and we think we’ll hit 1,000. If you want to help buy pizza or put up a prize for these fine folks hit reply and say ‘How can I help Jason?’

Also, our Hackathon will feature none of the offensive stuff that other hackathon recently had (read the gory details here: http://goo.gl/ZS7fxH).

Finally, I’m going to start syndicating my deals on AngelList.

So, if you missed being part of the LAUNCH Fund, you can simply follow me on AngelList and commit to putting $10k, or $25k, or whatever you want, alongside my investments. Of course, you (currently) have to be accredited and understand that investing in startups is a 90%+ exercise in failure, with the hopes of hitting an @uber once every 50 or 100 (which I was lucky enough to do!).

@jason on AngelList
https://angel.co/jason/syndicate  

all the best @jason

PS -- Had a great interview on This Week in Startups with Ben Milne, the founder of Dwolla. Watch it here: http://youtu.be/BFeSgN1cQhg.

PPS - The remaining list of folks we haven’t had on the show: @elonmusk, @mcuban, @marissamayer, @reidhoffman, @markpincus, @billgates, @stevecase, @edyson, @pmarca, @timarmstrongaol, @bhorowitz, @jeffweiner, @tferriss, @sherylsandberg and @finkd among many others. Feel free to encourage them to come on the show here: http://clicktotweet.com/4fe1U [ you can edit the tweet before it goes out ]

PPPS - Special thanks to the following for sponsoring the LAUNCH Mobile & Wearables event: ExpediaHasOffers, Rackspace and Tandem.

PPPPS - LAUNCH co-working space has room for three more startups.
Please contact cowork@launch.co if you want to sit with me here in Culver City!