Curious is targeting software companies producing annual recurring revenue between $500,000 to $5 million that are running out of cash or not meeting growth expectations for a future investment round.
The firm’s thesis is drawn from Dumont’s experience operating startups backed by venture capital.
“The venture model has somehow convinced us to take the most cost efficient businesses in history — software — and turn them into cash incinerators, all in the name of growth,” Dumont wrote in a LinkedIn post. “This is why countless companies have shut down, thousands of workers have been laid off, and so many toxic cultures exist. This is the human impact of the power law.”
Curious’ timing could be advantageous amid a tighter fundraising environment, dropping valuations, and venture capitalists placing more focus on profits over growth.
“I lost faith in the venture model a long time ago and felt I was part of the problem,” Dumont told GeekWire. “The purpose of what we’re building is to save as many startups as possible.”
Curious backed several startups, including many that were later acquired, such as Loftium, Makara, Jargon, and others.
The full focus of this new firm “is to provide a long term home for startups that get abandoned by VCs and are forced to shut down,” Dumont said.
Curious does not have a geographic focus and is looking for companies across the country and across various verticals. Dumont runs the firm along with finance chief Kathy Xu, who previously was director of finance at e-commerce startup Stamped.
Dumont has founded and worked for startups in Seattle, including Moz, where he was business development director. He was an entrepreneur-in-residence at startup studio Betaworks and later became chief marketing officer at Bitly, a Betaworks spinoff company which was acquired in 2018. He joined Stamped in 2021 as CEO and left in January.
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