NYC-based seed firm Lerer Ventures raising $30M fund

Faith Merino · September 14, 2012 · Short URL:

The VC firm has raised $63M to date

Seed stage venture capital firm Lerer Ventures is raising a $30 million fund, according to an SEC filing.  The form was initialized on August 31 and signed on Thursday.  The new fund follows on the heels of last year’s $25 million fund, which also heralded the arrival of former Huffington Post CEO Eric Hippeau, who joined Lerer Ventures in 2011 as a partner.

The NYC-based firm has raised $63 million to date.  Its first fund—an $8.5 million fund raised back in 2010—came about after father and son team Kenneth and Ben Lerer decided to formalize their angel investments and start financing seed-stage companies full-time.  The senior Lerer, Kenneth, is the co-founder and former Chairman of the Huffington Post.

There is a lot of HuffPo blood running through Lerer Ventures.  Partner Eric Ashman was previously the CFO at the Huffington Post, and advisor Jonah Peretti—CEO and founder of BuzzFeed—was also a founding partner of The Huffington Post.

Ben Lerer, Kenneth’s son, is the co-founder and CEO of Thrillist Media Group, a digital media company that encompasses men’s lifestyle brand and members-only shopping club

Companies in the Lerer portfolio span the gamut, from media and e-commerce to edtech and mobile app discovery.  Companies include subscription cosmetics shopping company Birchbox, personalized news curator Pulse, accelerator Betaworks, rich media site Qwiki, social media app maker UberMedia, and classroom management tool ClassDojo, among others. 

Birchbox announced its first acquisition of French counterpart JolieBox on Thursday, and launched its international expansion with several new user bases throughout Europe.

Fellow portfolio company ClassDojo was recently featured in our Resetting Education series and unveiled its new mobile app earlier this week, which will allow educators to reward students for good behavior on-the-go from their iPhone.  The company also raised $1.6 million in seed funding last month.

Prior to formalizing the Lerer Ventures firm, the Lerers and other partners had made investments in The Huffington Post (naturally), Business Insider,, BuzzFeed, and more.

We’ve reached out for more information and will update when we have more to tell.


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