New York City-based Brooklyn Bridge Ventures is excited to announce the close of its third pre-seed and seed stage fund, led by its sole Partner and Founder Charlie O’Donnell. While most early stage firms grow in size over time, growing fees and assets while abandoning the earliest stage founders during their most difficult raises, BBV has maintained its fund size from its last $15mm fund in order to focus on being the most accessible investor in New York City for first checks.
Charlie previously spent time at two other top tier New York City funds—Union Square Ventures and First Round Capital. He has a reputation for being early to identifying important companies. Nick Bilton identifies him as an influence on early Twitter investors in his book, Hatching Twitter. Dennis Crowley credits him as having helped kick off the first funding of Foursquare before other VCs had said yes. At First Round Capital, he helped source the firm's investments in Singleplatform (sold to Constant Contact), Moat (Sold to Oracle), Backupify (sold to Datto), Refinery29 (sold to Vice) and GroupMe (sold to Skype).
Brooklyn Bridge Ventures has led or participated in the first rounds of successful NYC companies such as online grocer Hungryroot, which just announced its $40 million Series C at a $750 million valuation; Imagen, which applies AI to medical image analysis and has raised over $100 million; and Clare, an innovative direct-to-consumer paint company. The firm is also a first round investor in fintech standouts Valar-backed Petal, where it led the seed round, and Brigit, backed by Lightspeed.
Founders can easily find Charlie O’Donnell in the New York City tech community through all of the community activities the fund produces, which it continued through the pandemic. In 2020, Brooklyn Bridge Ventures ran over 50 virtual events, bringing together over 3500 participants and is looking forward to the return of in person events like its “locals” neighborhood dinners and the Pre-Series A Offsite conference.
The fund will participate in any round raised by a company that has an aggregate of no more than $750,000 raised in previous rounds—which means BBV is willing to participate in rounds with just a few other individual investors all the way up to a $3-4 million seed with institutional investors. The firm is willing to lead, co-lead, or follow, but will always take an active role in helping its investments.
The firm has invested across many industries, including B2B SaaS, Healthcare, Consumer, Food, and Fintech, and will look at any company with the potential for a significant outcomes—especially those leaving the world a better place than they found it.
Almost 40% of the founding teams backed by Brooklyn Bridge Ventures have at least one female founder. A quarter of the teams have at least one BIPOC founder, including 6% with at least one Black founder. LGBTQ+ founders represent at least 12% of BBV’s founding teams.