10 years ago, we started what is now Pear VC under the name Pejman and Mar Ventures. But the story dates even further back to 2009, when Pejman approached me with the goal to build a fund that serves world class entrepreneurs and supports their efforts with know-how, network, and capital. Pejman had a clear vision to build a seed stage firm with a true legacy: one that would be talked about in the history books.
By that time, Pejman had established himself as a savvy angel investor, and he even backed some of my own startups. When setting out to start a fund, he wanted to partner with someone that had a complementary skillset: while Pejman had over ten years of experience investing, I had founded three companies. It was a great match, but I was initially pretty reluctant to dive into the world of venture. Pejman, like any great founder, did not give up. He spent four years trying to convince me, and ultimately the two of us agreed to set out and raise an initial seed fund in 2013. Raising our first fund was not easy. After all, neither of us had any venture experience and we did not fit the mold of typical VCs. After facing a series of no’s, a few brave LPs put their trust in us, and we were off to the races with a $50M seed fund.
So here we are, 10 years later. We are incredibly proud of how far we have come, but we’re also well aware of how much lies ahead of us. Over the last decade, we’ve seeded over 150 companies including marquee companies like DoorDash (NSDQ: DASH), Guardant Health (NSDQ:GH), Senti Bio (NSDQ: SNTI), Aurora Solar, Gusto, Branch, Affinity, Vanta, Viz.ai and many more.
Although we have come a long way since 2013, our DNA has not changed. Perseverance, can-do mentality, collaboration, service, and legacy remain the pillars of our fund.
The team has grown quite a bit. We now have a world class team of 26 (and growing!) Pear team members. Our investment team brings deep expertise across our vertical areas – from consumer to biotech to fintech to AI and beyond. We’ve also invested our resources in building a best-in-class platform team, with extensive backgrounds in company building – from talent to GTM to marketing and more.
Just like on day one of Pear, we are at the service of our founders. When we partner with a company, we are an extended member of their team and we do whatever it takes to help them be successful. We tell founders to think of us as “Ocean’s Eleven”: we’re a unique cast of colorful characters, with specific skills, a common plan, and coordinated execution. In fact, coordinated collaboration is at the heart of what we do.
We remain as optimistic as day one. Over the last decade of building Pear, we have witnessed the market go through its fair share of ups and downs. Despite the current economic downturn, we firmly believe that there is no better time to invest at the seed stage. The market is teeming with exceptional talent starting companies, the advent of AI is propelling company building at an unprecedented pace, and sales and marketing can be done at scale with fewer resources. In light of these factors, we are confident that the next wave of iconic companies will emerge from this downturn, and we are looking forward to being their initial backers.
This week, we celebrate raising our fourth fund at $432 million, but we know that fundraising is just one milestone. We have our eyes set on the decades that lie ahead, and we are already hard at work building new initiatives that will help us deliver on our promise to back and support early-stage companies.
Since day one, we’ve built Pear on this belief that people truly make the difference. We are deeply grateful to our LPs and to our founders who put their faith in us as partners every day.
We look forward to building the future of tech with Pear Fund IV. We couldn’t be more excited for the next decade of Pear!