Seed investment firm Lerer Hippeau Ventures is planning to write more later-stage checks, thanks to a new $28 million fund that it’s calling LHV Select.
“Since the very beginning, going back to 2010, we’ve always had the same strategy,” said Managing Partner Eric Hippeau — a strategy that’s focused on making seed investments in New York startups. (The firm has invested in more than 300 companies, including BuzzFeed, Casper and Warby Parker, with the majority of them based in New York City.)
The firm sets part of each fund aside so that it can participate as those startups raise additional funding, but Hippeau said that after the Series A, “We kind of run out of money to support the companies.”
LHV Select is supposed to address that, allowing the firm to remain involved in those later stage deals. Hippeau said the “sweet spot” for the fund will be checks of $2 million or $3 million (though some of them may be a little larger or smaller).
The fact that Lerer Hippeau was raising the follow-on fund was first revealed earlier this year through a regulatory filing. The firm raised its most recent seed fund back in 2015 — in fact, that $113 million fund is much larger than LHV Select.
Hippeau explained that this LHV Select was kept “relatively small” so that the two funds could eventually be “synced up”: “We haven’t decided when we’ll raise the next [follow-on] fund, but it will coincide with the next Lerer Hippeau Ventures regular fund.”
Principal Graham Brown will take charge of diligence and analysis for LHV Select, but Hippeau said the decisions will ultimately be made by the same investment team as the firm’s seed deals.
“Everybody participates,” he said. “We really want there to be continuity.”
He added that Lerer Hippeau has already made four investments from the new fund — but the rounds haven’t been announced publicly yet.