New 'Rise of the Rest' Fund Launching

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120WaterAudit received $100,000 in funding from the Rise of the Rest competition in 2017. (photo courtesy TechPoint) 120WaterAudit received $100,000 in funding from the Rise of the Rest competition in 2017. (photo courtesy TechPoint)

An initiative designed to shine a spotlight on entrepreneurs and startups outside of Silicon Valley has announced a second funding effort. The Washington D.C.-based Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, which made a stop in Indianapolis in 2017, has launched a second $150 million seed fund.

The initiative was created by AOL co-founder Steve Case, who is also the chief executive officer of Rise of the Rest parent Revolution. The first seed fund backed nearly 130 companies in nearly 70 cities, including Zionsville-based 120WaterAudit, which won a $100,000 investment after a pitch competition in Indy.

"At the launch of our first Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, we were confident that we could identify a wide range of promising startups based outside of Silicon Valley,” Case said in a news release. "But the results to date have exceeded our most optimistic expectations. We have made initial investments at a faster pace than we originally anticipated, and we’re seeing a stepped up pace of follow-on investments in companies that have scaled faster than expected. We were once a lonely voice in the venture world in touting this regional investment opportunity and are delighted to see the momentum now building in cities across the country."

The second fund is backed by a long list of well-known investors, including Case, Jeff Bezos and the Koch family. The new fund is being led by David Hall, a longtime Revolution investor who will serve as Managing Partner.

Revolution did not provide any details on which cities will be involved in the second round of the Rise of the Rest Seed Fund.

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