Inner Loop Capital makes seed-stage investments, with a focus on cyber security and the Washington D.C. region. Justin Label has worked in the start-up and venture capital ecosystem for 18 years, including 10 years at Bessemer Venture Partners in Silicon Valley. Justin first worked 17 years in the San Francisco Bay Area, and now has been investing for the last four years as an individual based in Baltimore, MD.
At Bessemer, Justin spent several years focused on cyber security, sourcing or working with 12 different cyber investments. Since 2015, he has made nine seed investments as an individual, eight in cyber security. Six of these are in the Washington, D.C. area and three are in the SF Bay Area.
Of the five investments Justin made prior to Q4 2017, four have raised follow-on institutional capital as up-rounds at an average mark-up (including pending closes) of 6.5x to his initial investment. He has made four additional investments since Q4 2017 which have not yet sought additional capital. All nine companies are still operating, with no exits and no shut-downs.
Inner Loop has frequently co-invested with Ron Gula (founder of Tenable), Ray Rothrock (Board Director of Checkpoint) and Rob Chandra (now GP of Avid Park Ventures). Institutional investors that have joined Justin in his investments or led follow-on financings include Bloomberg Beta, Glasswing Ventures, .406 Ventures, TDF Ventures, KEC Ventures, Arthur Ventures and Arbor Ventures.
Inner Loop will continue to make seed investments in both cyber security and other fields, in both Washington, D.C. and Silicon Valley. Inner Loop Capital coined the term "Cyber Corridor" to describe the cyber security start-up opportunities in the greater Washington, D.C. area. The region has arguably the deepest pool of cyber security talent in the world, and has launched industry icons including Tenable, Sourcefire and Mandiant. And yet, there is not a consistent source of professional risk capital to support new entrepreneurs in the region. There are just a handful of seed funds or $100m+ venture capital firms based in the area.
Inner Loop has been successful in attracting institutional capital both within and beyond the D.C. region to its portfolio companies. We believe local support is necessary for seed rounds, and regional support is needed for Series A. As D.C.-area companies become sector leaders, venture capital from Silicon Valley and across the globe is available for Series B and beyond. As an example, Bessemer Venture Partners (a leading cyber investor) has made seven cyber investments based in or launched from the D.C. area in the last few years. Inner Loop aims to continue to support regional entrepreneurs on their path to becoming attractive investments for the world's best venture capital investors.
Inner Loop has also made investments in the SF Bay Area, and will continue to do so. To date, Inner Loop's west coast investments have always been alongside institutional investors leading a seed round. This will likely continue to be our focus for SF-based deals, although we may make pre-institutional investments in strong syndicates as well.
Inner Loop intends to syndicate all deals where we can secure at least a $250,000 allocation. This will include both new investments and follow-ons to the existing portfolio.