Hi, we’re Character.

A new seed fund supporting founders with capital and sprints.

When you’re just starting out, we believe there’s nothing more important than building the right product for the right people. We helped Flatiron Health, Digit, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Slack figure it out fast — and we can help you, too.

⚡️ Character Labs is our 4-week sprint program for AI founders. Learn more →

Drawing of John Zeratsky
John Zeratsky

Author of Sprint. Former design partner at GV and design leader at YouTube.

Drawing of Eli Blee-Goldman
Eli Blee-Goldman

Early-stage startup investor. Former general partner at Capital Midwest Fund.

Drawing of Jake Knapp
Jake Knapp

Creator of the Design Sprint. Author of Sprint. Former design partner at GV.

Our startup advisors are Jeanette Mellinger, Charles Adler, and David Cirilli.

We are backed by more than 100 LPs, who act as an extended team to help us find and support startups. Our LPs include founders and executives from YouTube, Google, Slack, Square, Uber, Mozilla, Gusto, Clubhouse, Coinbase, Flatiron Health, and many other technology companies.

Seed Capital

We invest early and amplify our support as you build your company.

Investing up to $2 million at seed stage

We invest flexibly across the spectrum of seed stage, including Character Labs, our sprint program for pre-seed founders.

Focused on startups with technical edge and behavioral insight

Especially in AI/ML, enterprise, industry, climate, healthcare, and the life sciences — where software can unlock meaningful behavior changes that are aligned with customer goals.

Located anywhere — or everywhere

Great founders know how to leverage remote work to build amazing teams, and when to gather the team to sprint and connect. We’re a remote-native firm investing in companies incorporated in the USA.

Design Sprints and more

We work hand-in-hand with your team, using the Sprint method we created at GV, to help you find and expand product-market fit.

Answering high-stakes questions

Which customers should you focus on? How should the product look? What should you build next? Early-stage startups need to answer these questions ASAP, and we can help.

Diagram showing a loop of Plan, Build, Launch, Learn, with a shortcut from Plan to Learn
Together with your team

We’re not just talking about playbooks and resources — we actually clear our calendars and sprint with your team. Ask any founder we've worked with.

A proven recipe for startups

We've used sprints to help more than 200 startups answer questions and validate hypotheses. Thousands more have read our book and embraced the process. It works.

Investments

Phaidra

AI industrial control systems that save energy and money.

HeadsUp

AI for prioritizing sales opportunities.

Acquired by Hightouch
House Rx

Platform for medically integrated specialty pharmacy.

Fathom

Cross-platform AI meeting assistant.

Reclaim

Calendar assistant that schedules tasks and meetings.

Orbital Materials

Generative AI for materials science.

Highnote

Audio collaboration for musicians and podcasters.

Zest

The freest, fastest gifting platform for businesses.

Rumi

Video meeting platform with AI built in.

Extend

Platform for building AI workflows around unstructured data.

Comend

Tools for patient groups driving rare-disease research.

ASI

Personal AI tutor for students, schools, and governments.

Bend

Measure and share your company's carbon footprint.

Fertu

The marketing platform built for healthcare.

Inductive Bio

AI platform that accelerates drug development.

Apoxy

Programmable proxy platform for APIs and services.

1Fort

Cyber insurance automation platform.

Coming soon

Personalized cancer care navigation powered by AI.

Coming soon

All-in-one platform for understanding your customers.

Coming soon

Improve reading education with AI-generated content.

Coming soon

Accelerate investigational new drug applications.

Coming soon

Collaborative goals and accountable progress.

Coming soon

Helping merchants accept social service benefits.

Coming soon

Social platform to exchange space and experiences.

Coming soon

UI platform that helps teams build products faster.

Coming soon

AI control systems for robots in the real world.

Coming soon

AI phone system that automates voice calls.

Coming soon

Legal operating system for enterprises.

Coming soon

Generate short videos from existing content.

Coming soon

AI copilot for military training exercises.

Earlier Investments

Notable investments from our previous roles at GV and Capital Midwest Fund

About Character

We exist to help founders like you build the right product for the right people. We invest capital and time to help you figure it out fast.

But it’s not just about technology and money. For us, it’s personal, because time is our only finite resource. An hour spent at work is an hour we can’t spend with family or friends, or taking care of ourselves or our communities.

We believe the best use of our time is helping you build products and services that create meaningful change for your customers. Let’s work together to make it count.

We’d love to learn about what you’re building.

Character Labs is our new sprint program for pre-seed founders. Learn more →