Investing in early-stage NH tech businesses


NH Business: 2 NH investors have $5 million to invest in early-stage NH tech businesses – $125,000 at a time

On this segment of New Hampshire Business, Fred Kocher sits down with Jamie Simchik of Launch in Nashua to discuss how he started his company and how launch could help a company develop further

BUSINESS. I’M FRED COKER, A NEW HAMPSHIRE FATHER AND SON ARE PARTNERING WITH A HOUSTON, TEXAS, VENTURE FUND TO INVEST IN EARLY STAGE NEW HAMPSHIRE AND NEW ENGLAND BUSINESSES, SOMETHING THAT STARTED WITH A NEW HAMPSHIRE SMART DOG COLLAR COMPANY INVESTMENT. THE END RESULT IS AN INITIATIVE CALLED LAUNCH NEW HAMPSHIRE, LAUNCH NEW HAMPSHIRE. ITS GOAL DEVELOP INNOVATION, ECOSYSTEM IN NEW HAMPSHIRE. THE STRATEGY PROVIDE EARLY STAGE STARTUPS FUNDING SERVICES AND GUIDANCE. THE VEHICLE ARE THREE PLUS MONTH ACCELERATOR PROGRAM WITH FINAL PITCH TO INVESTORS AND THE FUNDING 5 MILLION FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE INVESTORS WITH VIA THE HOUSTON A HOUSTON, TEXAS VENTURE FUND. THAT FUND IS SOFT VENTURE FUND IN HOUSTON, PART OF A SOFT GLOBAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE SERVICES COMPANY. RAISING 40 MILLION TO 50 MILLION TO INVEST IN 120 COMPANIES IN THE U.S. AND AND BEYOND, INCLUDING NEW HAMPSHIRE, OVER THREE YEARS, IN EXCHANGE FOR 6% OF THE COMPANY. NOW, NEW HAMPSHIRE REAL ESTATE DEVELOPERS MICHAEL SZYMCZAK AND HIS SON, JAMIE SZYMCZAK, ARE BEHIND THIS, AND JAMIE JOINS ME IN THE STUDIO TO EXPLAIN IN TO EXPLAIN HOW THEY’RE INVESTING IN NEW HAMPSHIRE COMPANIES AND, AND HOW A DOG COLLAR COMPANY GOT YOU INTO THIS, A NEW HAMPSHIRE DOG COLLAR COMPANY. TALK ABOUT THAT, JAMIE. YOU KNOW, THANKS FOR HAVING ME. AND WHAT WE WHAT WE DID WAS WE WERE A BUNCH OF MUTUAL INVESTORS AND WAGS, A SMART DOG COLLAR COMPANY. AND, UM, AS THAT PROGRESSED, WE WANTED TO TRY TO GROW MORE, UH, YOU KNOW, STARTUPS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE. AND THAT’S HOW WE GOT TOGETHER A DOG COLLAR COMPANY THAT I JUST FIND IT INTERESTING. YEAH. HAVING BEEN AN OWNER OF A DOG, UH, LET’S SAY I HAVE AN EARLY STAGE COMPANY MAKING A NEW KIND OF A GRASS SEED THAT’S RESISTANT TO CHANGES IN CLIMATE AND CAN GROW ALMOST ANYWHERE UNDER ANY CONDITION. UH, HOW WOULD LAUNCH NEW HAMPSHIRE HELP MY COMPANY? WHAT’S THE PROCESS? YEAH, SO? SO TYPICALLY, UM, WHAT WE WOULD DO IS WE WOULD POINT YOU TO OUR PARTNERSHIP WITH SOFT TECH AND WHAT SOFT TECH DOES IS, AS YOU SAID, SOFT TECH HAS A DEVELOPMENT SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT COMPANY, BUT THEY ALSO HAVE A STUDIO AND A FUND. AND WE WOULD WE WOULD DIRECT THEM TO APPLY FOR THE, UH, THE STUDIO AND THEN THE FUND, WHICH WERE LIMITED PARTNERS IN, WOULD HELP SUPPORT THEM THROUGH THAT EFFORT. AND THAT WOULD TAKE HOW LONG? UM, SO THE APPLICATIONS ARE ROLLING AND IT’S, UH, A COUPLE TIMES, A COUPLE TIMES A YEAR, BUT IT’S A THREE MONTH ACCELERATOR. SO WHAT KIND OF BUSINESSES ARE YOU LOOKING TO INVEST IN? PRIMARILY, PRIMARILY TECH BASED, SCALABLE, UM, INVESTABLE, UH, COMPANIES AND YOU GET 6% OF A COMPANY THAT YOU INVEST IN EVENTUALLY. RIGHT? SO THE FUND GETS 6%. WE HAVE OUR SMALL PRO RATA SHARE AS AS LIMITED PARTNERS. BUT YEAH. UM, AND AND THAT THAT IS WHAT THE COMPANY GIVES UP ESSENTIALLY TO PARTICIPATE IN THE ACCELERATOR. HOW MANY COMPANIES ARE INVESTING RIGHT NOW? UH, 6464 SINCE 2000, HOW MANY NEW HAMPSHIRE? UM, NONE AT THE MOMENT. SO SO WE WOULD WE WOULD LIKE TO BE AND I THINK THAT’S THAT’S PART OF THIS EFFORT. WE WANT TO BRING AN ACCELERATOR TO NEW HAMPSHIRE. THERE CURRENTLY AREN’T UM, I CAN’T SAY THERE ARE NONE, BUT THERE AREN’T MANY. AND WE WANT TO PROVIDE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO NEW HAMPSHIRE STARTUPS. SO HOW MUCH? I MEAN, TYPICALLY, DEPENDING ON THE SITUATION, I KNOW, BUT HOW MUCH WOULD YOU INVEST IN MY GRASS SEED COMPANY? SO, UM, THEY GET, UH, WELL, THEY GET INTO THE FUND OR GET INTO THE STUDIO. UM, AND THEN THEY GET ACCESS TO $125,000, UH, CONVERTIBLE NOTE. AND THEN AS THEY PROGRESS THROUGH THE ACCELERATOR, THEY MIGHT GET MORE FOLLOW ON INVESTMENT AS WELL. SO ARE YOU LOOKING TO YOU’RE LOOKING TO INVEST IN 100 COMPANIES. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO DO THAT? HOW ARE YOU GOING TO FIND THEM. THAT’S THAT’S WHAT WE’RE TRYING TO DO. WE’RE WE YOU KNOW, WE’RE NOT THE FIRST PEOPLE TO DO THAT. THERE ARE OTHER PEOPLE DOING IT. BUT YOU KNOW, WE FEEL LIKE THE INVESTOR MARKET AND THE FOUNDER MARKET ARE VERY FRAGMENTED. AND WE’RE TRYING TO WE’RE TRYING TO FIND THEM. WE’RE TRYING TO GET THEM COME OUT, FIND US, AND SO WE CAN SUPPORT THEM. I MEAN, THERE’S SOME OTHER GROUPS LIKE NEW NORTH VENTURES, WHICH ARE FAMOUS, AND THEY’VE BEEN A GUEST HERE ON THIS SHOW. AND THE SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CENTER AT UNH AND SO FORTH. A SCORE FROM SBA, UH, THEY ALL ARE WORKING WITH SMALL EARLY STAGE COMPANIES. I ASSUME YOU’RE TALKING WITH THEM? OF COURSE, AND WHERE WE DRAW A LITTLE BIT OF A DISTINCTION IS WE DON’T DO A TON WITH BRICK AND MORTAR. IT’S USUALLY MORE ON THAT TECH SIDE. BUT YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW, WE THINK THERE WE THINK THERE ARE COMPANIES IN NEW HAMPSHIRE. WE JUST GOT TO FIND THEM. AND THERE ARE SOME IN NEW ENGLAND. YOU’RE ALSO LOOKING AROUND THE NEW ENGLAND STATES, RIGHT? YES. SO WE DID A PITCH EVENT IN OCTOBER. AND I WANT TO SAY A HANDFUL OF THOSE WERE FROM NEW ENGLAND. AND WE’RE NOT INVESTED IN ALL OF THEM. BUT BUT A FEW OF THEM ARE FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE AND FROM UNH. JAMIE SZYMCZAK, CO-FOUNDER OF LAUNCH NEW HAMPSHIRE, HOPEFULLY LAUNCH NEW HAMPSHIRE IF YOU FIND SOME OF THOSE COMPANIES, YOU KNOW, AND INVESTING IN EARLY STAGE NEW HAMPSHIRE COMPANIES, THANK YOU. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. THANKS FOR HAVING ME. AND IF YOU MISSED PART OF THIS BRIEFING, YOU CAN GO T

NH Business: 2 NH investors have $5 million to invest in early-stage NH tech businesses – $125,000 at a time

On this segment of New Hampshire Business, Fred Kocher sits down with Jamie Simchik of Launch in Nashua to discuss how he started his company and how launch could help a company develop further

“Launch New Hampshire” is a company in Nashua New Hampshire that supports and helps start-up businesses grow to their full potential.Their strategy is to provide early-stage startups funding, services and guidance. On this segment of New Hampshire Business, Fred Kocher sits down with Jamie Simchik of Launch to discuss how he invests in New Hampshire companies and how a smart dog collar company got him his start.

“Launch New Hampshire” is a company in Nashua New Hampshire that supports and helps start-up businesses grow to their full potential.

Their strategy is to provide early-stage startups funding, services and guidance.

On this segment of New Hampshire Business, Fred Kocher sits down with Jamie Simchik of Launch to discuss how he invests in New Hampshire companies and how a smart dog collar company got him his start.



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