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Patch Homes, A Modern Finance Company

In 2006 my friends Mia and Andre (pseudonyms) bought their dream garden apartment in Harlem for $500K. They had rented in New York for a decade and bought the apartment expecting to make it their home indefinitely. They initially financed [...]  Read more

Why USV is Joining the Libra Association

A new blockchain & cryptocurrency project, Libra, was announced today. Libra has been incubated by Facebook.  USV will be one of the founding members of the governing body, the Libra Association.  Libra is a stable, fiat-backed cryptocurrency that will launch inside [...]  Read more

An Overview of Blockchain-Based Universal Basic Income Projects

One of the applications of blockchain that we are very excited about is Universal Basic Income. While UBI has traditionally been imagined as a government subsidy, cryptocurrency gives us a way to implement UBI without the need for a government to implement it. We are intrigued by this possibility and are wondering about some key issues, such as the complexities around issuing new currencies and preventing fraudulent accounts. Read more

Welcoming ShopShops to USV

ShopShops is an example of our thesis around broadening access. It allows consumers to find and buy product from makers and retailers across the globe as well as connect with other users who share tastes and interests. Similarly, retailers can quickly and easily expand their reach to customers quite literally a world away. Read more

USV Thesis 3.0

We believe we are still at the beginning of the opportunity to broaden access with the most critical implications ahead of us. As a result, we decided to revise our thesis into a third version: USV backs trusted brands that broaden access to knowledge, capital, and well-being by leveraging networks, platforms, and protocols. Read more

CryptoKitties

The news broke today that USV, along with many of our friends in the tech/startup/VC sector, has invested in CryptoKitties. What is a CryptoKitty? Well it's a cute digital kitten. The USV team made one last December and our kitten [...]  Read more

Welcoming Stash to the USV Portfolio

Technology makes it possible to serve the mass base of financial services customers with personalized, tailored, high quality products that can improve financial well being for them and their families and result in massive businesses along the way. Which is why we’re excited to announce our investment in Stash out of our Opportunity Fund. Read more

Quantitative Investing in Shampoo

Can a machine help you invest in shampoo? Coffee? Another consumer product? Last week, the USV portfolio company CircleUp announced the closing and launch of CircleUp Growth Partners  - a $125 million fund that will use a quantitative machine learning [...]  Read more

Upgrade

In July 2011, we were fortunate to lead the Series D financing round in Lending Club, founded in 2006 by Renaud Laplanche. Along with Zopa (UK company) and Prosper, Lending Club was a pioneer of the now-familiar marketplace lending model, which cut interest costs for high quality borrowers by as much as 50% (not a typo) and at the same time offered investors attractive risk-adjusted returns not available elsewhere. This was a fundamental innovation in financial services that is thriving globally and will continue to gain in importance. Read more