If you want to get a sense of how early-stage investors feel they're affecting the venture ecosystem, watch this panel. At Venture Shift NY, hosted by Vator and Bullpen Capital, we brought together some high-profile and prolific investors to talk about their impact on a panel titled "How Angels and Super Angels/Micro-Cap VC Funds are Changing Stakes and Creating a New Ecosystem."
John Borthwick, from Betaworks, said it best: "VCs are dying." Essentially, what we've seen in the last decade is a consolidation of VCs and "shitty" returns out of the ones who raised funds in the first five years of the 21st century. At the same time, there are new investors emerging, particularly in the early stages that have new models and frameworks that differ from the old VC model. Betaworks is not a fund, but rather a company. It's investment activity is informed by what the team tries to build. And, their focus is very tightly around "social real-time." Their investments come out of their balance sheet.
Indeed, Betaworks is a pretty unique entity across the early-stage spectrum. TechStars is also a new breed of early-stage investor, though it's been around for several years. The TechStars fund is funded by 75 VCs. "We're in the business of getting our companies funded by other people," said David Tisch, who heads up TechStars in NY.
All the panelists made some great points about the ecosystem. So, what are you waiting for? Just watch the video.