- Samir Kaji and Hana Yang created Allocate to help more investors gain access to venture capital funds.
- The company just completed a $15.3 million Series A funding round led by M13.
- Within six months, Allocate has hired more than 200 investors, and has 600 investors on its waiting list.
Samir Kaji and Hana Yang know firsthand how difficult it can be to build venture capital portfolios, even for wealthy investors.
In jobs managing private equity relationships, venture capital and the diversity of project managers at First Republic Bank, they’ve seen individual investors and family offices barred from investing with venture capital managers on a regular basis. One of the reasons was the high minimum investment, which can range from $1 million to $50 million. Another reason is the difficulty of examining these managers.
“To build a great portfolio you have to see the world of great, qualified managers,” said Kaji, who has worked alongside Yang, with more than 1,000 venture capital managers over the years. “You have to have the time to get diligent in these managers which takes a lot of work. You have to be able to reach these managers because access requires relationships as well as a high minimum capital. And then, in the end, you need an easy way to keep track of These investments. The vast majority of families we’ve been working with have not been owned by them. Most individuals are completely blocked out from the sector.”
So, in late 2021, Kaji and Yang launched Allocate, a digital investment platform that gives family offices and wealth advisors access to top-tier venture funds and co-investments.
The standard minimum through Allocate is only $100,000. The platform pools investor capital into feeder vehicle allocation, giving venture capital managers the opportunity to gain access to non-institutional investors without having to source, manage and manage these allocations.
“We do this by pooling investor demand into a single-purpose feeder that invests in the underlying fund or group of underlying funds,” Kaji said. “Such compounding is conducted in accordance with Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules on investor numbers.”
The company has just completed a $15.3 million Series A funding round led by M13 with participation from Bedrock, SignalFire, Intera Capital, and return investors Tusk Venture Partners, Urban Innovation Fund, Fika Ventures, Anthemis, Basis Set Ventures and Broadhaven Ventures.
Within six months, Allocate has hired more than 200 non-institutional investors, and has 600 investors on its waiting list. These 200 investors injected $125 million into venture capital funds through the platform.
With the latest funding round, the platform will use the money to hire talent to help screen the queue of retail investors, family offices and wealth managers. Allocate is looking for this talent with the help of referrals, venture capital talent pool and recruiters.
Kaji said the company currently has 17 employees in three divisions: engineering, compliance, operations and sales. Its current team members come from countless companies across technology, venture capital and financial services: SVB Financial Group, SVB Capital, Hamilton Lane, AngelList, Bowdoin Endowment, iCapital, Fidelity, First Republic Bank, Kauffman Fellows, CircleUp, Gradifi, Vistaprint .
Watch the 17-page presentation of the presentation set used to raise over $15 million.