Josh Mohrer (pictured above) and William Barnes, two former Uber executives, are working on an investor syndicate to invest in startups led by fellow former Uber employees, Axios reported and TechCrunch has confirmed.
“We believe that people who help build transformative companies will go on to do other awesome things,” Mohrer told TechCrunch about the syndicate’s thesis to invest in Uber alumni. “The idea is that we can really move the needle for companies who are doing things that are Uber-adjacent — things that are in our wheelhouse.”
Mohrer and Barnes have been working on this for the last nine months or so. While a lot of the emphasis is on backing startups led by former Uber employees, that’s not a strict requirement, Mohrer said.
The syndicate, which is made up of around 100 former Uber employees, “started pretty organically,” Mohrer said. So far, about 50 people have taken part in at least one investment. The check sizes have been modest — in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The focus of the syndicate is on two-sided marketplaces and transportation startups like Lime and Cargo, which partnered with Uber last week to enable drivers to sell passengers goods during rides. The syndicate’s other investments are in Replicated, Service and Salido.
“In the fall, we’re strongly considering what a traditional VC angle on this would look like,” Mohrer said. Likely, that would be called Moving Capital.
Last May, Mohrer left Uber to join Tusk Ventures as its managing director. Before joining Tusk, Mohrer spent about five years at Uber. While at Tusk, Mohrer led the firm’s Series A and B investments in Lime competitor Bird. Barnes, on the other hand, formerly led Uber’s West Coast operations for almost six years.