Los Angeles, California based venture capital firm DVRGNT Ventures first arrived on the scene in 2022 targeting a $10 million early stage fund, focused on investing in early-stage companies at the prototype and seed stages.
With 2022 under his belt, DVRGNT Ventures founder B. Pagels-Minor is focused on continuing the company’s successful journey in 2023, and beyond.
“DVRGNT Ventures was started after I grew increasingly more and more frustrated at the lack of engagement from VCs to founders I consulted with in the Midwest, South, and Mountain West” Pagels-Minor told NFuzer. “My consulting practice focuses on helping companies more efficiently find Product-Market fit, so these companies had fundamentally great businesses but lacked the profile many leading VCs prefer. I ultimately founded DVRGNT Ventures with the sole focus of investing in early seed and pre seed companies in the Midwest, South, and Mountain West agnostic of vertical.”
Pagels-Minor has had experience working with big brands such as Netflix and Apple, and uses that experience to help guide his company towards the future, and also becoming a valuable component of building business, and optimizing the VC partner process.
My product experience across such large and respected organizations means I really understand what it takes to scale a company internationally while also keeping in mind compliance and regulatory issues” Pagels-Minor said. “I think that type of experience is invaluable when considering the right VC partner and how to build multi million dollar businesses.
Following their arrival in 2022, DVRGNT Ventures is poised to accomplish more in 2023, with a vision to expand outside the traditional tech ecosystem, especially in specific locations.
“Mission 1 is to complete the fund raise for our $10 million fund” Pagels-Minor says. “I also have a specific focus on connecting more of the VCs, accelerators, and innovation programs across the country to help us pool resources to support founders outside of the traditional tech ecosystem to help combat the fact that less than 14% of VC funding makes it to the Midwest, South and Mountain West.”
Despite a 2022 that closed with a number of layoffs and challenges throughout the tech industry, Pagels-Minor believes that where the industry is trending is going to end up in a good place, and particularly good for his investing focus.
“I think the layoffs are especially great for my thesis because the combination of nearly 3 years of COVID, layoffs, and the ability to work from anywhere means thousands of tech workers relocating back to their home areas which are more often than not the areas in which I invest” Pagels-Minor said. “I think it will be a natural evolution as people seek out LCOL areas and get settled into new communities that explosive new ideas will be developed.”
Pagels-Minor also had some tips for founders who may be current raising, or gearing up to pitch to investors, and pointed out some key common flaws seen in pitch decks..
- “Focus too much on the problem and not how their product is the solution.
- Unclear asks where you’re unsure of what the $$$ amount is being asked for and how the founder will use the funds.
- Too many possible products in the overall product. I often see pitches where there are multiple business lines and it’s unclear what the actually is.”