Akkadian Ventures invests in growth stage technology companies. We provide alternative liquidity solutions for entrepreneurs, angel investors, venture capital funds and employees.

What we do

Mission

We believe that liquidity is a vital part of long-term company building. We have invested our time, money, and careers to solve the problem of employee and early investor liquidity. Our goal is to help companies retain and attract the best employees and manage their investor base to create longterm shareholder value.

The Akkadian Difference

EXPERIENCE Our team members pioneered the direct secondary and option exercise loan market.
SERVICE We treat every shareholder with responsiveness and respect, from the largest to the smallest.
LEGAL With in-house legal capability we can address any liquidity problems quickly and efficiently.
SPEED With a small and focused team you are always dealing with our Firm's principals.
TECHNOLOGY With a full-time CTO we have developed custom software to smoothly manage complex company liquidity programs.
COLLABORATIVE We work with companies to address their liquidity needs and frequently we are the first secondary purchase.

At-a-Glance

FOUNDED 2010
PORTFOLIO 56 Companies
AUM $198M+
TARGET COMPANIES Typically $20M+ in revenue
TYPICAL INVESTMENT SIZE $250K - $10 Million
INVESTORS Leading Institutional Investors, Family Offices, Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs
PRIMARY SECTORS OF INVESTMENT Software, Internet, Mobile

Meet the Team

BEN BLACK

Managing Director and Co-founder

Benjamin Black is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of Akkadian Ventures and a 16-year private equity veteran. Prior to Akkadian, Ben co-founded New Cycle Capital to bring socially responsible investing to sectors like clean energy and social finance. He started his private equity career on the investment teams at Maveron and Rosewood Capital where he focused on branded consumer products and services. Prior to his private equity career, Ben was a member of the founding team of Harris Interactive.

Ben holds a BA and JD from Cornell University.

As a hobby, Ben enjoys developing restaurants and eating in them. He partnered with Top Chef Masters winner Chris Cosentino to bring Cockscomb to SOMA.

MIKE GRIDLEY

Managing Director

Mike is a Managing Director of Akkadian Ventures. Previously, he was a member of the founding team of Industry Ventures, where he served as a Managing Director since 2004. Mike led Industry Ventures' investments in Facebook, Twitter, Pandora, LifeLock, Jajah, MedeAnalytics, Cloudmark and Lowercase Capital. He also helped grow Industry Ventures from less than $10 million AUM to over $1 billion AUM.

Prior to Industry Ventures, Mike worked at BV Capital (formerly Bertelsmann Ventures) in San Francisco, a $275 million international venture capital fund. At BV, he sourced, structured, and managed direct venture investments. Earlier in his career, Mike worked in Business Development at Personify, a CRM analytics software company.

Mike holds a BA from University of California, Berkeley, where he was a Regents and Alumni Scholar, and an MS from the London School of Economics.

INDUSTRY VENTURES DISCLAIMERS:

At a minimum, Mike led due diligence, prepared the investment memo, and brought these deals to Industry Ventures' investment committee for approval.

This list of Mike's previous deals only includes the direct secondary investments and special situation fund investments (primary investments in funds with existing assets) because these are the types of investments that are typically made by Akkadian Ventures. Subject to any existing confidentiality obligations, a complete list of all deals led by Mike at Industry Ventures is available upon request.

PETER SMITH

Co-founder, CFO/GC/CCO

Co-founder of Akkadian Ventures, Peter practiced corporate securities law previously at Cooley LLP, Morrison and Foerster LLP, and Bryan Cave HRO LLP. He focused on venture capital financing, private equity, M&A, securities law compliance, corporate governance, equity compensation as well as commercial agreement negotiation and preparation.

As an entrepreneur, Peter spent over three years as the COO of a real estate development company specializing in large mixed-use projects.

He received his BA, cum laude, from Cornell University and his JD from the Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. He is a member of the State Bar of California and the State Bar of Colorado.

CHRIS TARR

Chief Data Scientist/CTO & RAISE

Chris Tarr is the Chief Data Scientist/CTO of Akkadian Ventures and the Program Manager for RAISE in the Presidio. He is responsible for managing the proprietary data, systems, and processes used by Akkadian Ventures. Chris manages all cybersecurity policies and technical compliance for Akkadian Ventures and is responsible for the production of RAISE in the Presidio, San Francisco's premier conference for emerging venture capital managers.

Prior to Akakdian Ventures Chris was a co-founder of OnRequest Images, a Seattle-based custom photography logistics automation company. Previously, he was co-founder and CTO of Expede, Inc., a software consulting and training firm acquired by Valtech SA in 1999. Prior to this, Chris was Vice President of Research and Development for ObjectSpace, Inc. and held senior technical roles at Convex Computer Corporation and AT&T Bell Laboratories.

Chris holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University.

CRAIG NOLAN

Principal

Craig Nolan is a principal at Akkadian Ventures. He focuses primarily on due diligence for prospective transactions and also assists in sourcing and execution.

Prior to Akkadian, Craig was a director at Arcstone Parters, a leading valuation firm. Arcstone's clients include some of the world's leading private companies. He has researched and valued countless companies for transactional and regulatory purposes. His experience encompasses entities of virtually every size and industry, with an emphasis on fast-growing private companies supported by institutional venture capital and private equity funds. At Arcstone, Craig helped establish Arcstone Equity Research, a research firm that served the direct secondary marketplace.

Craig earned an MBA and BS from the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver and is a CFA charterholder.

LOREN SIEBERT

Venture Partner

Loren has been an early investor, technical advisor, or key employee at several early stage companies: RallyPoint, Disruption Corporation, Keen.io, Omada Health, IndieGoGo, Zozi, and Quote.com. Specializing in large-scale search and analytics systems and Agile development methodologies, Loren works with both government agencies and small startups to get commercial-quality software into production. Loren led the technical development for DigitalGov Search, an award-winning hosted SaaS search solution currently used by over 1,500 government and military sites.

Previously, Loren was a lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley, where he taught Arabic. As an entrepreneur, Loren designed and built a specialized language learning program called LinguaStep that today is used by Arabic language learners worldwide in universities and high schools as well as in the Army Special Forces.

Loren began his career at the National Security Agency while still in high school. He holds degrees in Computer Science from the University of Maryland and the University of Manchester, and studied technology policy at the London School of Economics as a Marshall Scholar.

BEN BLACK
Managing Director and Co-founder

Benjamin Black is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of Akkadian Ventures and a 16-year private equity veteran. Prior to Akkadian, Ben co-founded New Cycle Capital to bring socially responsible investing to sectors like clean energy and social finance. He started his private equity career on the investment teams at Maveron and Rosewood Capital where he focused on branded consumer products and services. Prior to his private equity career, Ben was a member of the founding team of Harris Interactive.

Ben holds a BA and JD from Cornell University.

As a hobby, Ben enjoys developing restaurants and eating in them. He partnered with Top Chef Masters winner Chris Cosentino to bring Cockscomb to SOMA.

   

Mike is a Managing Director of Akkadian Ventures. Previously, he was a member of the founding team of Industry Ventures, where he served as a Managing Director since 2004. Mike led Industry Ventures' investments in Facebook, Twitter, Pandora, LifeLock, Jajah, MedeAnalytics, Cloudmark and Lowercase Capital. He also helped grow Industry Ventures from less than $10 million AUM to over $1 billion AUM.

Prior to Industry Ventures, Mike worked at BV Capital (formerly Bertelsmann Ventures) in San Francisco, a $275 million international venture capital fund. At BV, he sourced, structured, and managed direct venture investments. Earlier in his career, Mike worked in Business Development at Personify, a CRM analytics software company.

Mike holds a BA from University of California, Berkeley, where he was a Regents and Alumni Scholar, and an MS from the London School of Economics.



INDUSTRY VENTURES DISCLAIMERS:
At a minimum, Mike led due diligence, prepared the investment memo, and brought these deals to Industry Ventures' investment committee for approval.

This list of Mike's previous deals only includes the direct secondary investments and special situation fund investments (primary investments in funds with existing assets) because these are the types of investments that are typically made by Akkadian Ventures. Subject to any existing confidentiality obligations, a complete list of all deals led by Mike at Industry Ventures is available upon request.

   

Co-founder of Akkadian Ventures, Peter practiced corporate securities law previously at Cooley LLP, Morrison and Foerster LLP, and Bryan Cave HRO LLP. He focused on venture capital financing, private equity, M&A, securities law compliance, corporate governance, equity compensation as well as commercial agreement negotiation and preparation.

As an entrepreneur, Peter spent over three years as the COO of a real estate development company specializing in large mixed-use projects.

He received his BA, cum laude, from Cornell University and his JD from the Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. He is a member of the State Bar of California and the State Bar of Colorado.

Chris Tarr is the Chief Data Scientist/CTO of Akkadian Ventures and the Program Manager for RAISE in the Presidio. He is responsible for managing the proprietary data, systems, and processes used by Akkadian Ventures. Chris manages all cybersecurity policies and technical compliance for Akkadian Ventures and is responsible for the production of RAISE in the Presidio, San Francisco's premier conference for emerging venture capital managers.

Prior to Akakdian Ventures Chris was a co-founder of OnRequest Images, a Seattle-based custom photography logistics automation company. Previously, he was co-founder and CTO of Expede, Inc., a software consulting and training firm acquired by Valtech SA in 1999. Prior to this, Chris was Vice President of Research and Development for ObjectSpace, Inc. and held senior technical roles at Convex Computer Corporation and AT&T Bell Laboratories.

Chris holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University.

Craig Nolan is a principal at Akkadian Ventures. He focuses primarily on due diligence for prospective transactions and also assists in sourcing and execution.

Prior to Akkadian, Craig was a director at Arcstone Parters, a leading valuation firm. Arcstone's clients include some of the world's leading private companies. He has researched and valued countless companies for transactional and regulatory purposes. His experience encompasses entities of virtually every size and industry, with an emphasis on fast-growing private companies supported by institutional venture capital and private equity funds. At Arcstone, Craig helped establish Arcstone Equity Research, a research firm that served the direct secondary marketplace.

Craig earned an MBA and BS from the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver and is a CFA charterholder.

Loren has been an early investor, technical advisor, or key employee at several early stage companies: RallyPoint, Disruption Corporation, Keen.io, Omada Health, IndieGoGo, Zozi, and Quote.com. Specializing in large-scale search and analytics systems and Agile development methodologies, Loren works with both government agencies and small startups to get commercial-quality software into production. Loren led the technical development for DigitalGov Search, an award-winning hosted SaaS search solution currently used by over 1,500 government and military sites.

Previously, Loren was a lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley, where he taught Arabic. As an entrepreneur, Loren designed and built a specialized language learning program called LinguaStep that today is used by Arabic language learners worldwide in universities and high schools as well as in the Army Special Forces.

Loren began his career at the National Security Agency while still in high school. He holds degrees in Computer Science from the University of Maryland and the University of Manchester, and studied technology policy at the London School of Economics as a Marshall Scholar.

   
MIKE GRIDLEY
Managing Director
PETER SMITH
Co-founder, COO, and CCO
CHRIS TARR
Chief Data Scientist/CTO & RAISE
CRAIG NOLAN
Principal
LOREN SIEBERT
Venture Partner

Contact Us

San Francisco

Akkadian Ventures

595 Pacific Ave, Fourth Floor

San Francisco, CA 94133

Fax: (970) 237-3013