Primarily based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, First Star sometimes backs robotics, blockchain, AI and machine learning-focused startups on the early stage. The agency has not disclosed a primary shut for its deliberate third fund, per a submitting with the Securities and Alternate Fee, but when it goes on to boost the projected quantity, it will symbolize a severe leap from First Star’s earlier funds.
In 2014, the VC launched a debut $10 million fund underneath a special title (Procyon Ventures), and it adopted that up with a $25 million second fund in 2019, in keeping with PitchBook. Its founding companions, Millie Liu and Drew Volpe, share ties to each MIT (as researchers) and MassChallenge, the Boston startup incubator (as mentors).
First Star didn’t instantly reply to a request for additional information on its plans for the brand new fund, however the investor’s latest offers provide a touch on the place it’s focusing its vitality these days. Offers the VC participated on this yr embody a $7 million seed spherical for ChiselStrike, which makes instruments for back-end software program builders, and a $12 million Sequence A for Zanskar, which goals to decarbonize the U.S. energy grid by recognizing geothermal assets with AI. Like Zanskar, First Star-backed Fyto is also thought of local weather tech; the MIT-founded startup intends to chop water waste and greenhouse gasoline emissions by utilizing robots to develop “ultra-sustainable” feed for cows.
Cantos, one other deep tech VC with an early-stage focus, lately launched its personal $50 million third fund with a extra extrinsic deal with responding to the local weather disaster.