Sheel Tyle used to co-lead the seed-investing practice at New Enterprise Associates. Now he’s raising his own, $100 million fund, reports Forbes.
Tyle has an interesting story. After graduating from Stanford at age 19 with a double major in biology and public policy, he went on to nab a law degree from Harvard while working first for the venture firm Bessemer Venture Partners and, by age 21, for NEA. He was an associate but was quickly promoted to principal and co-headed the firm’s seed practice, according to his LinkedIn profile.
All along, Tyle says on LinkedIn, he was investing alongside his employers, making personal bets on Pinterest; the French online ad firm Criteo (which went public in 2013); the Canadian e-commerce software company Shopify (which went public in 2015); and, among many other successful companies, Twilio, which enables developers to build applications that can interact with customers and that went public last year.
Tyle did not respond to a request for comment today, but his new firm, Amplo, completed a first close in recent weeks, sources tell Forbes, and the rest is reportedly oversubscribed.
One of its two bets to date was announced just today: Andela, a three-year-old, New York-based company that aims to connect Africa’s top developers with companies in need of tech talent across the world. The company sealed up a $40 million Series C round led by CRE Venture Capital; Amplo was able to chip into the round thanks to Andela CEO Jeremy Johnson, who asked Tyle several years ago to serve as an independent board member, says Forbes.
Amplo has also invested in One Concern, a three-year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based software startup that provides damage estimates using artificial intelligence on natural phenomena sciences.
Forbes says Amplo has a unique twist on seed investing, which explains the sizable debut fund it’s working to close. The apparent idea is to pour 20 percent of its capital into seed-stage companies while committing the remaining 80 percent to eight to 10 of the most promising startups in its portfolio.