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Internet angel Boris Wertz launches $15m micro-VC fund

25 Jul 2012

Early stage technology investor Boris Wertz has launched Version One Ventures, a new $15m micro-venture capital fund.

Version One will back web and mobile entrepreneurs across North-America with $250,000 to $500,000 investments in seed and Series A rounds.

Wertz’s portfolio encompasses over 35 early-stage consumer internet and mobile companies, including Chloe & Isabel, Edmodo, Flurry, GoInstant (acquired by Salesforce), Indiegogo, Indochino, Julep, Suite101, Sparkbuy (acquired by Google), Summify (acquired by Twitter), Top Hat Monocle, Tynt (acquired by 33across), Wattpad and Yapta.

He is also a venture partner of Munich-based Acton Capital Partners, a consumer internet fund that is focused on later stage companies. He is also one of the founders of GrowLab, a Vancouver-based start-up accelerator.

Before becoming an investor, he was the COO of AbeBooks.com, a marketplace for new, used and rare and out-of print books which got sold to Amazon in 2008. He joined the company in 2002 after JustBooks, the German company he co-founded in 1999, was acquired by AbeBooks.

Wertz said, “The fund builds on my successes with over 35 angel investments which include six exits – among them acquisitions by Google, Twitter, Salesforce, and Groupon. My simple investment thesis: back passionate entrepreneurs who are trying to solve a big problem with a strong product vision.

“Version One came to life in the same way that most start-ups evolve. I bootstrapped my first angel investing projects with my own funds, found product-market fit and in the past 2 years have gotten significant traction with exits and follow-on rounds for portfolio companies (most recently for social publisher Wattpad, crowdfunding platform Indiegogo and educational network Edmodo).

“With the internet rapidly moving into everybody’s hands, today’s entrepreneurs will be in the position to build the companies we all dreamt of in 1999 when I started my own start-up JustBooks. The timing was therefore right to take my “angel investing project” to the next level and create a larger fund with a big vision: to become one of the most respected early-stage funds in North-America by being a trusted and helpful partner for entrepreneurs.”

Version One Ventures is backed by over a dozen successful American and Canadian internet entrepreneurs as well as a number of high-net worth individuals, he added.

To date the firm has already made five investments – interactive learning platform Top Hat Monocle, beauty brand Julep, business management software Jobber, Instagram artist marketplace Instacanv.as and social intelligence platform Sunnytrail.

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