We back founders first.

We're a venture capital firm backing founders at the earliest stages of their careers and companies.
Investing in teams led by dropouts, Deep-Tech scientists, and founders working outside of tracked institutions.

Talent Discovery & Exceptional Results

We helped launch and run the Thiel Fellowship, working alongside Peter Thiel to identify and work with young founders building new technology. 1517 exists to scale that knowledge discovering exceptional talent.

Learn about our Thesis and Story
“1517 believed in me first."
Stephen Balaban, founder & CEO, Lambda
"1517 has financed the best education I've ever received."
Alex Schwarzkopf, co-founder & CEO, Pillar
“I shared [with a referred founder] why Alex and
I feel strongly that 1517’s capital was the best
seed money we took and has carried the most
weight through our early journey).”
Nikhil Srinivasan, co-founder, Pavlov
“Yay!! I’m so happy :) Thanks for making all this
possible by giving me the means to not go into
consulting and start working on my company
right out of college!”
Cade Netscher, founder, Neurun
“Though 1517 didn't invest, they really care to help in any other way they can. Most VC's who pass give the generic 'let me know if I can be helpful in other ways'.... Danielle and Michael start being helpful right away and don't wait for you to ask. If you can get them as investors, you'll be in great  hands. They rock!”
Anonymous Review from Know Your VC
“Danielle was extremely transparent and straightforward, which was unlike the overwhelming majority of venture capitalists that we spoke to in Silicon Valley. We, as well as any other company, would be lucky to have Danielle, Michael,and the entire 1517 team on our side.”
Anonymous Review from Know Your VC

Building a Global Community of Founders, Makers & Subversives

We work with young hackers, makers, scientists, and founders working outside of tracked institutions all over the world.

Meet our portfolio Companies
the next step?

Let's Chat

If you're a hacker, maker, or scientist working outside of universities and tracked institutions, we'd love to hear from you.
get in touch

Recent Articles & Media

August 24, 2020
Zero to $3.4 Billion: Luminar Goes Public

The Year the Bubble in Higher Education Pops

Read story
August 20, 2020
Announcing 1517 Fund Investment: Stryx

You, More Handsome

Read story
June 16, 2020
The Invisible College: $50k Investments

We’re making $50k investments in idea/R&D-stage teams that want to work outside of school in the fall.

Read story