1809 Capital announces new $10M venture fund for Miami University alumni


1809 Capital, a new venture fund established to benefit Miami University alumni announced the first close of its initial fund as it seeks to reach its $10M funding goal. The growth-stage fund aims to attract top-tier venture capital deal flow and plans to donate a majority of its carried-interest to the Miami University Foundation to support entrepreneurship at Miami.

With this first closing of capital, the fund is now active, and has closed on its first investment,, located in Mountain View, CA, participating with leading west coast venture capital syndicate partners.

1809 Capital was founded by 1980 Miami graduates Jim Ryan and Mark Richey in collaboration with Tim Holcomb, Chair of the Department of Entrepreneurship and Director of the nationally-ranked John W. Altman Institute for Entrepreneurship. Fund management also includes an experienced alumni team of venture investors who are also Miami graduates - Kimberly Walker, John Gardner, and Kevin Mendelsohn.

1809 Capital is a financial return-focused investment platform utilizing the extensive network of Miami alumni across the technology and investing sectors. Fund strategy is executed by experienced venture fund managers and leverages a significant network of institutional venture fund managers, entrepreneurs, board directors/advisors, and C-level management.

1809 Capital is focused on investment opportunities that have demonstrated commercial revenue growth and strong product-market fit. Additionally, 1809's members are afforded the opportunity to network with experienced executives in the innovation ecosystem and engage in collaboration with Miami’s Altman Institute for Entrepreneurship.

“Innovation and entrepreneurship concepts have been instrumental in my professional success, said Ryan, retired chairman and CEO of W.W. Grainger, and co-founder of the Ryan Family Scholars Program. “I strongly support the Altman Institute’s mission, its benefits to Miami’s Farmer School of Business, and students from all majors. I believe that an alumni venture fund affiliated with the Altman Institute for Entrepreneurship furthers the institution’s mission from both a financial perspective, as well as increasing the access to venture and innovation thought leaders.”

“Miami alumni are among the most active leaders in the national startup ecosystem, actively leading high-growth companies that have raised almost $3B in venture capital over the past 24 months and have created more than 10,000 jobs," Holcomb said. "1809 Capital provides the Altman Institute the opportunity to catalyze an impressive network of Miami alumni-founders and investors and formally engage a broader base of Miami alumni with high growth companies led by Miami grads.”

John Gardner, partner, NGP Capital in Palo Alto, and member of the 1809 Capital management team, commented: “Miami alumni represent a growing venture network. Strong relationships with this community provide a unique opportunity for national access to top tier deal flow. Investing in strong syndicates with leading venture capital investors allows 1809 Capital to participate in well vetted investment opportunities.”

“There is a desire to benefit the university, but to do it in a sustainable way. I believe access to great management teams and quality investment syndicates are both critical components of a successful investment strategy. I’m pleased to give my personal support to the platform and its mission to offer Miami alumni the opportunity to invest in a professional venture asset class 1809 Capital 3 platform and support both current MU students and the Miami University Foundation,” said Andy Collins, MU ’05 and managing director at Summit Partners.

In addition to helping Miami University and its alumni, the Fund benefits students by providing internship opportunities and experiential learning opportunities in venture capital investing.