William Poon: Cornell Tech FM

Original Article: Intro to Big Red Ventures

Big Red Ventures is a student-run Venture Capital Fund at Cornell University. It was started in 2001 by two MBA students who were in the Park Fellowship program. Since then, Big Red Ventures has been run and managed by MBA students. The fund currently invests out of Cornell University’s funds and seeks to create a real and educational experience for students who are interested in learning about the inner workings of a Venture Capital fund. Since 2001, out of the 19 startups that BRV has invested in, there have been 2 Acquisitions and 1 IPO. You can view our portfolio companies here.

Fund Managers are chosen each year through a selective application process. They are responsible for sourcing deals, performing due diligence, and making the final investment recommendations. They are also responsible for managing relationships with portfolio companies and monitoring the performance of the portfolio.

Fund Managers also select Fund Associates; students interested in learning more about the VC industry who volunteer their time to support the Fund Managers.

BRV investment focus

BRV typically invests in pre-seed and seed stage startups where we can invest $25,000 as well as support their growth through the resources of the Cornell University network.

As the fund serves as a vehicle to allow students to learn about different startups and industries, the fund is industry agnostic and will invest in any type of startup as long as it meets our requirements.

If you’re interested in pitching BRV, please feel free to reach out to us here.

What value does BRV bring to a startup

As Big Red Ventures is much larger than the typical fund, the fund can better support founders and entrepreneurs with the time of our Fund Managers and Associates.

Cornell has an extensive network of alumni in the VC space, active angels in the Red Bear Angels network, as well as resources through the institution itself. BRV seeks to support our investments through providing additional value past the investment itself.

Even as we interact with startups that we might not invest in, we still seek to provide help and support where we can in the form of introductions to other VCs and Angels, alumni and experts in their field, or appropriate introductions.