Join us as we catch up with venture capitalists in the Columbia alumni network who are defining the next generation of investments.
What is the focus of Amplifyher Ventures?
Amplifyher Ventures invests in early-stage, high-growth companies founded or led by women pioneering new market opportunities. Amplifyher Ventures was founded in 2018 by Tricia Black (Facebook’s 7th employee and first VP of Sales) with the mission of getting more women into leadership roles at high-growth companies.
We invest in founders who create virality. As marketers by way of background, we identify companies with a unique ability to go-to-market in innovative, resourceful ways, leveraging community-driven marketing tactics for exponential growth.
What made you interested in venture capital?
What interests me about venture capital is the ability to work with a multitude of people creating the leading innovations that define the way we’ll live tomorrow.
I’ve been completely entrenched in New York’s venture ecosystem for nearly 15 years, first as a Public Relations specialist. While building the brands of some of the city’s early startup darlings, I would often look to investors as those who could parachute in and offer tips around best practices, growth hacks, and common pitfalls. I saw the value of that pattern recognition first-hand and wanted to garner it for myself, and I saw an even greater opportunity to evolve the traditional venture capital model with it.
I went to Columbia Business School to transition from startup operator to investor. Moreover, I was able to leverage my time at CBS to build up the tool kit I needed to merge my entrepreneurial experience and perspective with the traditional models of asset management.
What is an emerging trend or investment area that’s particularly exciting to you right now?
I am particularly excited about the use of technological innovation to create greater efficiencies in our everyday health. From a new application of Artificial Intelligence for the remote monitoring of aging adults to a mobile app that helps couples conceive, we at Amplifyher have invested in founders who ensure greater accessibility, transparency and even longevity through their developments.
What is a company you’ve invested in that you are very excited about, that others should be excited about too?
Amplifyher recently invested in a company called Espressable, which is a speech therapy platform for kids and young adults. More than a telehealth platform, Expressable equips parents with asynchronous tools that enable them to be an active part of their child’s progress. By focusing on parent intervention, Expressable makes speech pathology more accessible and efficacious than it’s ever been before. We were brought into this opportunity by Graham Brown CBS ‘14, who led the round at Lerer Hippeau Ventures. (So I guess we can credit the network of the 2014 CBS VC Club for this one!)