WE IMAGINE…

a world where current constraints and borders disappear through technology enabled connectivity. Where all 7 billion people in the world have equal access to information and services, so that all human potential can be unleashed to create a better world.

WE BELIEVE…

that decentralization ensuing from the combination of people and machines, and peer-to-peer connectivity, will lead to an enhanced experience for all of humanity. The 21st century will see solutions to our greatest challenges, and life-enhancing innovations that we can’t even imagine today.

WE KNOW…

that the best innovations will come from the most diverse teams, and we are funding exceptional entrepreneurs with global ambitions that share our vision and values.

TRUE TO OUR NAME, FUTURE\PERFECT VENTURES IS INVESTING IN THE FUTURE, TODAY.

THEMES

We partner with entrepreneurs who share our core values and passion to create a better world. We invest early, working closely with founding teams and our network to help build the next generation of impactful technology companies.  Here are the stories of some of our entrepreneurs.

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BITPESA

Bitpesa is the first pan-African blockchain-powered payment network. After careers in finance, technology and development, the founding team saw opportunity in emerging blockchain infrastructure to reduce business-to-business and peer-to-peer payments from 12-20% to 3%, putting money back into the pockets of businesses and individuals who are now able to save and invest more back into the economy as a result.  Founded in Nairobi in 2013, Bitpesa expanded operations to Uganda, Tanzania and Nigeria in 2015, and has since opened three additional offices in Luxembourg, London and Dakar, Senegal. In 2016 the company launched an ‘Africa to China’ business payment link, including support for Ugandan Shilling and Nigerian Naira to Chinese Yuan. The increasing demand led BitPesa to partnerships in the DRC, Ghana, UAE, South Africa, and Mozambique.

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ABRA

Bill Barhydt, founder of Abra, is a veteran of the cross-border money remittance sector.  He saw firsthand the inefficiencies created by multiple intermediaries including Western Union and banking institutions, which extract significant fees for small transactions.  With emerging markets rapidly adopting smartphones, Bill saw opportunity in enabling local agent networks in these markets with a blockchain powered app that would reduce fees for the sender and recipient, and provide agents with access to a broader customer base.  Launched in 2015 at the Launch Festival (where it won Best Startup), Abra quickly expanded in both the United States and Philippines. Abra now has tellers available in over 170 cities around the world, including over 1,500 locations in the Philippines. Following the expansion, in Fall 2017 Abra launched a new Bitcoin-based multi-signature wallet for holding, sending and exchanging digital assets.

TOKEN

Melanie Shapiro founded Token after experiencing a security lapse with her online digital wallet.  An experienced entrepreneur and specialist in consumer behavior with an exit under her belt, she gathered a team of cryptographers and security experts from Rochester Institute of Technology to build Token. Individuals and businesses lose billions of dollars of capital and productivity each year due to identity theft and fraud, a statistic Token wants to reduce.  As more devices and people directly connect to each other in the future, technologies such as Token’s will be crucial to maintaining network trust.

We are investing in companies building technology that will be game-changing, ubiquitous and indispensable.  Our team has a strong track record of identifying and building next generation companies globally.  Below are themes that we are most interested in as we look at the next 10 years.

PORTFOLIO

PRIOR INVESTMENTS

PORTFOLIO COMPANIES IN THE NEWS

THE TEAM

 jj_lgJALAK JOBANPUTRA

Founding Partner

A technology veteran with over 20 years as an entrepreneur and VC, Jalak founded Future\Perfect Ventures in 2014. She has invested in over 80 early stage companies over the past 15 years, resulting in several multibillion dollar acquisitions and IPOs. She is widely renowned as a blockchain thought leader, and was she was of the first investors in the blockchain space in 2013.  She was recently named one of Institutional Investor’s Most Powerful Fintech Dealmakers.  Previously, Jalak was a director at Omidyar Network managing mobile investments in emerging markets, and Senior Vice President at the New York City Investment Fund where she launched a seed tech fund and the Fintech Innovation Lab.  She was also at Intel Capital in Silicon Valley from 1999-2003, on the founding team of a web startup in 1997, and a tech/media/telecom investment banker at Lehman Brothers in NYC and London.  Jalak has served on multiple advisory boards for the White House, NYC Mayor’s Office, and the US State Department, and serves on the BOD for the Center for an Urban Future.  She is a frequent contributor for CNBC, Bloomberg TV, Business Insider, Quartz Media, and Fox Business News.  Her full bio can be found here, and she has been active on twitter since 2007 at @jalak.

ADVISORS

Future\Perfect Ventures has gathered an Advisory Board of industry leaders and visionaries who share our vision for a more connected world. They provide guidance to our team and portfolio, and are an important part of the FPV family.

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VICKI CHEUNG

Founding Member,
OpenAI

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DEBORAH ESTRIN

Professor CompSci, Cornell Tech
Founder, Open mHealth

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SUNIL HIRANI

Founder, Creditex,
Digital Asset Holdings

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HILARY MASON

Founder, FastForward Labs
Data Scientist, Accel Partners

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NAVEEN SELVADURAI

Partner, Expa
Co-Founder, Foursquare

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RACHEL WEISS

Head of Digital Innovation,
L’Oreal

MEDIA

JALAK JOBANPUTRA: INTERVIEWS & PROFILES

Excerpt from “Kingdom of New York  Jalak Jobanputra: The Barefoot VC on Bitcoin, Mobile Technology and Silicon Alley”

Published in NY Observer, August 2014

“We have all this data being collected by our devices, and the next generation of interesting companies is going to figure out how to sift through it in a way that’s more seamless and beneficial to the user.

Even if there’s hype around something new, I look for a nugget that can grow into something interesting and sustainable. I remember sitting in a conference room at Lehman in ’95 for the Netscape IPO. There was a sense of, “That’s a different way of looking at the organization of information and providing access to information to people who haven’t had access before.” I see a lot that at the core of bitcoin. There will be hiccups along the way as this technology rolls out, but I always think of the pent-up demand in the world for self-empowerment. There are billions of people out there who haven’t had the ability to empower themselves. It’s not because they’re not capable, it’s because they haven’t had the opportunity.”

WRITINGS

BITCOIN AT $10K – THE BEGINNING

The price of bitcoin reached $10K earlier today.  Over the years I have seen a significant change in conversations around virtual currencies (“it’s for drug dealers!”; “there’s no underlying asset!”; “it’s a fraud!” to “how do I buy bitcoin”?;“can you help me look at this ICO?”) and we are no doubt at the cusp of more widespread acceptance of the concept. Read More

Published in recode, November 2017

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TOKEN THOUGHTS ON THE BLOCKCHAIN BOOM

There is also a lot of buzz about ICO’s, or initial coin offerings, a new asset class of cryptocurrencies being issued in crowdsales to fund development of projects on top of Bitcoin or Ethereum (or in some cases, entirely new protocols)…. Read More

Published in The Barefoot VC, May 2017

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ARE BANKS THE NEXT DINOSAURS?

Last week, I spoke at The Economist’s Buttonwood Gathering in NYC about how emerging markets (and Africa in particular) are leapfrogging innovation in the financial services sector. The most documented example of this is M-Pesa’s mobile money platform in Kenya, which I have written about a few times on my blog The Barefoot VC, including in my thesis piece When Third is First. Read More

Published in Medium, October 2015

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RETHINKING IMPACT INVESTING

Impact investing, venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship are all areas in practice and theory that have been close to my heart for years. As regular readers of my blog know, I was born in Nairobi and grew up visiting the developing world in the 1980s, after my family moved to the United States. Read More

From The Barefoot VC, May 2015

WHEN THIRD IS FIRST

In 2011, I wrote about Jugaad, according to Wikipedia “a colloquial Hindi word that can mean an innovative fix or a simple work-around”. I noted in the blog post that Jugaad is “now an acceptable management technique…and also applies to any kind of creative and out of the box thinking… Read More

From The Barefoot VC, June 2015

SMART DATA, DIVERSITY AND OUR DECENTRALIZED FUTURE

As an avid traveler, observer of the world and a technophile, I’ve been struck by the parallels in the development of technology with the broader evolution of societal structures. These observations have led me to the investment thesis at the core of Future\Perfect Ventures. We’re investing in decentralization as a theme… Read More

From The Barefoot VC, January 2015

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