Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios
Scribble Ventures, a two-year-old early-stage Silicon Valley firm, has raised about $55 million for its second fund and just over $29 million for an opportunities fund.
Why it matters: Scribble founder and managing director Elizabeth Weil is still one of the few female solo general partners and she has been in the industry for nearly two decades.
What she’s saying: “In the ’70s, it was such a craft: you work with great investors, you help the company to scale, everything is bespoke,” Weil told Axios of the inspiration for how she’s operating the firm.
- She started her career at established firms like Menlo Ventures and IVP.
- After three years at Twitter, where she established its corporate development team, she joined Andreessen Horowitz in 2012 to help build out its portfolio services. It was a novel approach at the time: “We were still figuring out what verticals did the founders want — is it hiring? Is it government relations?”
Between the lines: In an age of multi-stage VC firms (including her former employer, Andreessen Horowitz) raising billions of dollars, it’s quite tempting to raise larger and larger funds.
- But Weil points to the industry saying that “your fund size is your fund strategy” as an important mantra.
- “Often our founders tell us that despite check size we are the most helpful on the cap table,” she said. “Often we’re able to find these deals first… and the other firms want to be able to play nicely with us.”
- Still, firms like hers aren’t a fit for every startup. “We’ve said ‘this is what we can do for you,’ and the founders pick Scribble,” she explains. “And other times where, if it’s about money and numbers… it’s just a different situation.” But it’s got three “unicorns” in its portfolio already, and more on the way.
1 🐦 thing: “Where’s my popcorn??” said Weil when asked about her former employer’s ongoing saga with Elon Musk, adding that “the one constant of Twitter, as we joke, is that there’s always some turmoil going on.
- The service needs to exist, she said, though what capital structure is best for it is for others to determine.
The bottom line: “I do think we’ve made progress,” said Weil of women in venture capital, who still only make up small fraction of actual check writers.
- “It’s also an area I put a lot of effort on, nurturing younger women through the industry… I never had that,” she added.