Andreessen Horowitz and Khosla Ventures veteran Kristina Simmons launches firm to support founders commercializing science and technology for human and planet health
SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Overwater Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm, supporting the next generation of founders in human and planet health, today announced the close of its $20 million inaugural fund. Participants in the round include well-known institutional family offices, experienced founders and investors. Founded and led by Kristina Simmons, a former partner at Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and Chief of Staff and Investor at Khosla Ventures, Overwater Ventures makes strategic investments in early-stage companies pushing the boundaries of biology, healthcare, AI, robotics, climate tech and the future of food.
“Some of the greatest innovation, with the highest potential for societal and economic impact, is happening in digital health, biotech and climate right now,” said Simmons, founder and managing partner at Overwater Ventures. “I created Overwater to help founders more easily bridge the gap between a successful technology and a scalable business that people love.”
Simmons continued, “Brand building starts with founders; we want to help them stay above water so they can build the best possible version of their company. I’m grateful that an all-star roster of investors and founders share this vision and are on board for Fund I with our mission to create a firm that entrepreneurs associate with industry-disrupting breakthrough companies.”
Overwater’s Fund I has already invested in a number of portfolio companies that reflect its mission. Examples include:
- Overstory, a company that successfully reduced power outages and wildfires as it has analyzed over 500 million hectares of land.
- Conceive, named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies, has helped 64% of its users to become pregnant within 6 months.
- Gameto has licensed technology from Harvard’s Wyss Institute to grow human ovaries and has promising results from pre-clinical studies for its fertility therapy, Fertilo.
- Zero Acre Farms launched a cooking oil made by fermentation to reduce deforestation and improve human health and recently announced an investment from Chipotle.
- Prose Foods is building a protein discovery platform for healthier and more sustainable foods.
- Overture Life is revolutionizing egg freezing and IVF, and recently achieved the first baby born with its technology.
“Kristina is a passionate investor that draws energy from helping early stage founders. Her broad network helps founders ask and answer key brand questions in the early stages that can make or break a company,” said Vinod Khosla, founder of Khosla Ventures.
Overwater takes a holistic approach with its portfolio companies. According to KPMG, just 20% of founders are satisfied with their mental health and wellness. With the understanding that better humans make better companies, Overwater will offer both business and personal support including programs focused on mental and physical well-being to help founders reach their leadership potential, believing this is key to entrepreneurs’ success and the work they bring to the world.
Simmons has deep tenure in venture capital and brand building. At lululemon athleta, she helped launch the brand’s ecommerce, social, and digital platforms, and eventually, co-founded the company’s Emerging Products & Concepts efforts. As a partner at Andreessen Horowitz, she connected portfolio companies to Fortune 500 brands, helping them scale in new ways. As an investment team partner and chief of staff at Khosla Ventures, she invested in early stage companies and served on the boards of startups like Alivecor, Overture Life and Ginger.
About Overwater Ventures
Overwater Ventures is an early-stage venture capital firm that helps founders turn breakthrough technologies into focus on making people and the planet into scalable businesses people love. The firm gives founders the support they need to quickly turn their vision into a sustainable, high-growth business with the aim to create both societal and economic outsized returns. Overwater Ventures is committed to partnering with and funding founders working on science and technology that, once commercialized, has the potential to radically impact human lives and the planet. Learn more at https://overwater.vc/ or follow us on LinkedIn or Twitter.