AOL guru Steve Case is coming to Richmond on May 4 with $100,000 in his pocket as venture capital to be invested in a promising local start-up.
Entrepreneurs with bright ideas can meet with Case and other members of his group as part of its “Rise of the Rest” tour through Richmond and four other Southern towns including Raleigh-Durham, Charleston, Atlanta and New Orleans.
The idea is to spread up to $500,000 in venture capital beyond the usual entrepreneurial areas such as California’s Bay Area and Boston. The VC road show is being sponsored by Google for Entrepreneurs, UP Global and Revolution, which is a group Case set up in 2005. Industry analysts believe it's about time that VC money got spread around more broadly.
Richmond has some vigorous start-ups but is behind the pack in venture capital or angel investing. Charlottesville is seen as a bigger player and Richmond is a bit behind in winning patents, which usually go locally to Old Economy behemoths such as Philip Morris USA and DuPont.
Case will offer food and drinks to aspiring Richmond entrepreneurs who could meet with him on May 4. He and his groups will choose the local winner.