Cap VC is launching a tool for VC firms, and is planning to expand its offering to startups raising money. The idea is to make better investment decisions, faster, using the power of AI.
VC is a people-business above all, but as AIs are getting closer and closer to being people, too, there’s a slew of new tools making their way to the market. Some of them (such as Connetic Ventures’ tools) are developed in-house and kept as proprietary tools giving VCs an edge, while others (DeckMatch and Headline) are spun out of VC firms in an attempt to carve up the startup investment space.
As a startup spun out of a VC fund that prides itself on leveraging AI-powered tools to streamline VC operations, Cap VC is taking a stab at disrupting the people funding the disruptors.
The freshly minted startup says it saw opportunities within the venture capital industry’s inefficiency, recognizing a largely unmet need. Specifically, it identified that VCs are inundated with complicated PDF files, which is where Cap VC comes in.
“We turn unstructured data from PDF files, balance sheets, income statements and P&L accounts into structured data,” explains Patrick Theander, CEO of Cap VC, in an interview with TechCrunch. “An ‘operating system for VCs’ was really the only description that seemed fitting for what we’re building. We are building native apps on Mac and Windows, and are launching an API so developers will be able to build on top of our platform. We are building a set of robust ecosystem tools for the VC industry.”
The process doesn’t end there, Cap VC aims to go a notch higher and provide context to the portfolio companies. This allows a solid platform for possibly the entire history look-up of a startup the VC is interested in. “We want to provide VCs with a full context of their portfolio, and of the companies they might invest in: The context of that company, the different funding rounds, the historical data and everything else,” Theander added.
Aside from developing a platform, Cap VC is also creating a more accessible space for LPs and auditors. They are tapping into collaborations, leveraging insights from auditing firms like Deloitte to build a fund management tool that different stakeholders, even the regulatory bodies, can utilize.
Despite being unsure about the specifics of the team size, Theander is clear about keeping the team small, without compromising on efficiency. In his words: “It’s not my intention that we are going to be a huge team, I want to make a small, fairly compact team… if you have the right set of people, you’re able to build much faster and much better.”
A big question is becoming more and more apparent: Why haven’t VCs built something similar themselves? Theander’s theory is that the VCs don’t know how to build, saying that building a platform like the one Cap VC is launching requires a nuanced understanding of the tech startup ecosystem.
Knowing what I know about VCs and the amount of money they spend on getting an edge over the competition — NfX’s suite of tools including Signal, which helps founders find the right investors for their funding round, is one example — makes me wonder if Theander’s take is a little on the naive side. On the other hand, software development is a specialized skill, and he says Cap VC has a waitlist of eager investors standing by to take the company’s tools for a spin.
At the same time, Theander identified that perhaps there’s another dynamic at play, too.
“I’ve also realized that most VCs are just lazy. If it works, it’s fine, and they don’t care. But I think that’s really good for us to be honest. We are building a super simple platform that is easy to get started with,” Theander says. If there’s truth to that, the lackadaisical attitude on the part of VCs may inadvertently have given Cap VC an opportunity.
The platform is hoping to launch to the public in February.