Mayor sees ‘game-changer’ as major investment firm move to Philadelphia
Philadelphia will soon be home to a leading venture capital firm.
First Round Capital, led by venture investor Josh Kopelman, is moving its headquarters to the city.
First Round is one of the most active early-stage venture capital firms in the country, having helped to fund and start more than 200 companies since it was founded in 2004. First Round will officially open its 10,000-square-foot facility at 40th and Locust streets on Sept. 19.
“The arrival of Josh Kopelman in Philadelphia is a game changer,” said Mayor Michael A. Nutter.
“When one of America’s leading entrepreneurs and investors sees Philly as a place of ideas and innovation, a place where those ideas can be transformed into successful businesses and jobs, and feels the need to be part of it, he sends an incredibly powerful message about what is going on in our city.”
First Round Capital, currently headquartered in West Conshohocken, will initially employ approximately 10 people in the Philadelphia office. The facility will have space to host five startup companies including, initially, Uber Philadelphia, Curalate and Technically Philly. In addition, there will be space for 24 entrepreneurs to develop their concepts, and event space to host educational and community events.
Philadelphia’s thriving tech startup community was a draw for Kopelman.
“We’ve begun to see more really exciting companies get their start in Philadelphia, and more entrepreneurial activity at Philadelphia’s universities,” said Kopelman.
“For me this is more than just an office move. It’s a way for me to get more involved in helping local entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground, and I’m looking forward to playing a more active role in helping the current generation of Philadelphia entrepreneurs make their mark.”
Earlier this year, Kopelman was named as one of the top ten ‘angel investors’ in the United States by Newsweek magazine, and was ranked sixth on Forbes 2012 “Midas List” of the top 100 tech investors. He has been an active entrepreneur and investor for more than 20 years, co-founding the company, Infonautics Corporation, while still a student at the University of Pennsylvania in 1992.
Alan Greenberger, deputy mayor for Economic Development, says First Round’s arrival sends a strong signal.
“Philadelphia is starting to establish itself as a player in the world of startups and innovation,” said Greenberger.
“We have no shortage of ideas in this city, due to the incredible talent emerging from our colleges and universities, but too often those ideas leave in search of early-stage funding. First Round Capital’s arrival in Philadelphia is a strong signal that this city, which has led this country in innovation since its founding, will continue to be a America’s home for ideas, entrepreneurship and business creation.”