While Lerer Ventures is not yet two years old, its new partner, Eric Hippeau, has been close to Silicon Valley super-angel Ron Conway for more than two decades.
So it was a natural fit for the two funds to syndicate their deals and leverage their networks on the east and west coast. “We are really strong on the tech in the Valley and Lerer is terrific in the media and advertising worlds of New York,” says SV Angel’s David Lee.
The idea is that the two firms will get a first look at the deals that the other is getting into, with the investment being at the discretion of the entrepreneur. While veterans like Hippeau and Ken Lerer have built a great network, youngsters like Ben Lerer and Jordan Cooper run with the start-up crowd.
The deal mirrors an earlier partnership SV Angel established with Russian investor Yuri Milner. “Our companies will now have access to a much bigger web of connections when it comes to business development,” says Lee.
Conway and Hippeau are thick as thieves, said one local VC, but Conway’s comments at TechCrunch Disrupt that “New York tech is here to stay” struck many as condescending. “We’ve been here for twenty years building real businesses, so nice of you to notice.”