NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Torch Capital, the NYC-based early-stage VC fund, announced the closing of over $200M in new capital to continue investing in the next generation of disruptive tech-enabled brands and platforms shifting consumer behavior and powering the consumer ecosystem. Since launching in 2018, Torch has established itself as one of the top performing consumer tech funds in NYC, with their latest fundraising announcement bringing the firm’s total AUM to over $400M. Torch has a track-record of investing early in some of the fastest growing companies across the consumer ecosystem including Ro (Roman), Acorns, Highsnobiety (acquired by Zalando), Tia, Naadam, Rho Banking, Sollis Health, and Lili Bank.
“Consumer markets remain one of the largest and most disruptable spaces in the world. As technology evolves, consumer behavior is constantly shifting, creating huge opportunities to build value in more parts of their lives than ever before. We back companies transforming entire consumer verticals, using technology to make products and services more accessible, transparent, and affordable,” said Torch Founder and Managing Partner, Jonathan Keidan.
“Our investment lens has always been razor focused on brand and a company’s ability to create and sustain deep relationships and trust with their end-consumer. To do so, we work in the trenches with our entrepreneurs to help them identify, nurture and scale their audience bases,” added Keidan.
Torch is at the forefront of investing in a new definition of "consumer,” applying their learnings of what makes a great traditional consumer brand to an ever increasing range of industries and verticals that extend beyond the purely B2C ecosystem.
“As technology becomes more commoditized and B2B becomes more consumerized, we view a company's brand stack as a critical driver of value creation for consumers, SMB's and larger enterprises,” said Keidan.
Since the beginning of his career, Keidan has built a reputation as a taste-maker. Before entering venture, Keidan co-founded digital media company InsideHook and spent time at McKinsey in their TMT practice. He started his career as a manager in the music industry, discovering talent and nurturing the careers of young artists, songwriters, and producers. With an innate ability to spot and develop up-and-coming musical talent, working early with artists such as John Legend, The Dave Matthews Band, and songwriters for Robbie Williams, Christina Aguilera and Enrique Iglesias, Keidan is now applying the same eye for talent to entrepreneurs.
With an investment history stemming back to 2008, Keidan’s early investments include Compass (IPO 2021), Digital Ocean (IPO 2021), Sweetgreen (IPO 2021), and Zocdoc, with several other early investments being strategically acquired over recent years including Say (acq. Robinhood), Swarm (acq. SpaceX), Sir Kensington’s (acq. Unilever), and Parcel (acq. Walmart).
Torch is backed by some of the world’s leading founders, operators and institutional investors including Silas Chou (renowned consumer investor behind Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, and Aston Martin F1), James Murdoch (Former Chairman & CEO, 21st Century Fox), Bob Pittman (Chairman & CEO, iHeartMedia), Bob Hurst (Former Vice Chairman, Goldman Sachs and Vice Chairman, Clearview), Brynn Putnam (Founder, Mirror), Diplo (Grammy award-winning and renowned DJ, producer and artist), and Jenny Fleiss (Co-Founder, Rent the Runway).
Torch has already seen this thesis translate into early success across Fund II with notable seed investments including Embed, the next-gen clearing and custody platform, which was recently acquired, and Little Otter, one of the fastest-growing mental health platforms for kids and their families, which recently closed a significant Series A led by Charles River Ventures.
Over the past year, the team at Torch has received several industry recognitions. Keidan was listed by Business Insider as one of the Top VCs in New York City. Sam Jones (Partner) was named as one of the Top 5 Investment Professionals Originating from the UK in Both Consumer and Fintech. Katie Reiner (Principal) was named in Forbes 30 Under 30 in VC and Chris Harper (Principal) was recognized by Business Insider as a Rising Star in VC.
About Torch Capital
Torch Capital is an NYC-based early-stage venture firm investing in tech-enabled consumer brands, platforms, and the infrastructure layers that power them. The firm operates at the intersection of consumer and technology, investing in mission-driven companies that are improving accessibility, transparency, and convenience for the end consumer.
Torch's investment lens focuses heavily on a company’s ability to create and sustain deep relationships with their consumer, helping founders to identify, nurture, and scale their audience. The team combines their experience in investing, operating, and building brands to partner with entrepreneurs and help catapult these companies to their next stage of growth while maintaining trust and loyalty with their customer base.