Blue Collective

John Kasper


Failed attorney. Disgruntled academic. Reformed consultant. Retired turnaround guy. Wistful musician. Reluctant VC..

Want to view this full profile? Sign up!

Notable Investments

Unqork, Tecovas, ZocDoc, MediaMath, Catalina Crunch

Questions & Answers

Origin Story: In a couple sentences, how would you describe your path to becoming an investor?

Our careers prior were as operators and advisors (and other stuff, e.g., academic, chef, small business owner, etc.). My partner and I had worked together in these other contexts for over a decade and loved working together. We had been angel investors for many years too. We decided that we wanted to work together for the second half of our careers, and thought that trying our hand at being investors was the right move. Call is a 'mid-life' crisis moment but it's been great so far

Investment Approach: What are the key factors you consider when evaluating a founding team?

1) They are operators, not just entrepreneurs
2) They are long-term focused
3) They are dilution-sensitive
4) They are achievement-oriented and have a 'chip on their shoulder'
5) They are principled

What's your style and approach when it comes to working with founders post-investment? What are the characteristics of founders you've worked well with?

We take very seriously being co-owners of a business with a founder. We are there when you need us and get out of the way when you don't. We work well with founders who are driven always to be better than who they were the day before. We always work best with founders who are professional (and sometimes a bit snarky)

If I'm coming to pitch to you or your firm, what's the one piece of advice you'd give me?

Be yourself and share yourself. We are investing in you and your vision, not the pitch deck

How would you describe your own personal mission and values, and how do they impact the way you invest?

My personal mission always is to learn constantly and help others succeed. We (and by extension, I) value truth, drive, humility, and authenticity. We invest in founders who share similar values and who push us to be better at what we do too

What do you like best about investing in NYC, and what’s your outlook on the future of NYC tech?

We wouldn't want to be anywhere else but NYC. We love the diversity of talent in NYC. Unlike other places (read: San Francisco), NYC attracts people (founders included) with talents beyond just tech and engineering and with backgrounds beyond just Stanford (not that there is anything wrong with Stanford). We love NYC and are always excited about the future of NYC entrepreneurship (I'm purposely not using "NYC tech"). 2020's challenges make us only more excited about NYC and its future