Mozilla launches first-of-its-kind venture fund to fuel responsible tech companies, products
Initial $35M will foster an ecosystem of startups that push the internet — and the tech industry — in a better direction
Industry veteran Mohamed Nanabhay will head the venture
November 2, 2022 (LISBON, Portugal) — Today, amid a sea of internet companies and products that routinely put profits ahead of people, Mozilla is unveiling an ambitious new venture capital fund to transform technology investment — and the internet more broadly.
Says Mark Surman, Executive Director, Mozilla: “Many people say the tech industry has lost its soul. Some even say it’s impossible to make it better. My response: We won’t know unless we try, together. Mozilla Ventures is about fueling companies and products that put people before profits. And it’s about fueling enough of these companies and products that we can ultimately push the internet in a better direction.”
Mozilla Ventures is a venture capital fund for early-stage (seed to series A) startups whose products or technologies advance one or more of the values in the Mozilla Manifesto, like privacy, inclusion, transparency, and human dignity. The fund will seek companies and founders who embody these values, and investors who are aligned with them.
To start, Mozilla will invest an initial $35 million in internet companies that protect privacy, decentralize digital power and build more trustworthy AI — and that also have big potential for commercial success. Three initial investments (below) are being announced today, and the full roll out of the fund will occur in early 2023. The fund will be led by Managing Partner Mohamed Nanabhay, who has spent his career working on innovation, digital media, technology, and as an investor. Nanabhay has held leadership positions at Al Jazeera and the Media Development Investment Fund, and was previously a Mozilla Foundation board member.
Says Nanabhay: “Many of us can’t imagine life without the internet. But are we willing to imagine life with a better internet for us all? That’s why we’re starting Mozilla Ventures — to create an ecosystem of entrepreneurs from across the world who are building companies that create a better internet. We want to support founders who are working on the many challenges we face online — from misinformation to censorship, security to privacy, and the ability to harm instantaneously and at scale. These issues are too important to leave to any one institution to solve.”
Says Mitchell Baker, Chief Executive Officer of Mozilla: “Mozilla is the only technology organization designed from day one to represent people and their interests over profit online. We are a mission-driven business and we pride ourselves in championing not only an open internet, but also human dignity, privacy and a global community of millions of people who support that mission. Our values — privacy, security and joy — both drive our advocacy and shape our products. This unique position enables us to strengthen the responsible tech ecosystem at a critical time for the technology industry — and we will support that ecosystem by investing in a new generation of companies and products that share a vision of a safe, open internet.”
Mozilla Venture’s portfolio includes a range of mission-driven start-ups and companies. Three initial investments are being announced today:
- Secure AI Labs (SAIL) — SAIL uses advanced security and AI technology to keep patient data secure and advance medical collaboration. They aim to advance bioinformatics research and innovation with a platform that allows faster, more secure access to data, powering the future of better healthcare for all.
- Block Party — Block Party is a social media safety app designed for the realities of online harassment. It allows individuals who experience regular harassment to safely engage in public conversation on social media by setting their own content boundaries.
- heylogin — heylogin is a ‘swipe-to-login’ password management solution designed for businesses. Primarily aimed at SMEs, heylogin charges per user and allows for businesses to manage shared passwords as well as individual accounts.
Mozilla is working actively with a wide variety of founders, investors and experts to shape the final design of the fund. Lucid Capitalism, a brilliant team of venture and ESG experts, is playing a key role in supporting Mohamed with fund design.
Mozilla Ventures is just at the start of its journey. Startups who would like to get in touch with Mozilla Ventures or investors who are interested in partnering can contact Mozilla at firstname.lastname@example.org
About Mozilla Ventures
Mozilla Ventures is a first-of-its-kind impact venture fund that invests in startups pushing the internet — and the tech industry — in a better direction. The fund supports early-stage startups whose products or technologies advance one or more values in the Mozilla Manifesto, like privacy, inclusion, transparency, accessibility, and human dignity. Its long-term strategy: To fuel an ecosystem of products and technology that respect users and that make the internet a healthier place. The fund is led by Managing Partner Mohamed Nanabhay.