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Moving On From High Peaks; Focusing On Interplay

It was just over three years ago when I got involved with High Peaks.  At that time, both the firm and I were in a state of transition and there were opportunities to collaborate.  I wanted to keep a toe in the VC game and they were looking for a partner to help them expand their position in the NYC scene.  It was an obvious marriage.  While working with them has been an incredible opportunity, Interplay is scaling and it requires my focus.  With a dose of nostalgia, today I’m announcing that I will be leaving my post as Venture Partner at High Peaks.

When I joined High Peaks they were in an interesting point in their firm’s development.  They had the makings of a great venture fund:  top-notch returns, CEOs that loved them and a team of high caliber, high integrity humans – the kind of guys you wanted to be in business with.

After six years of operation, despite their low profile they had found themselves in some incredible companies such as TxVia (which Google later acquired for a big number) and others that were largely based in Manhattan. About the time I showed up they were in the process of shifting their center of gravity to Union Square, positioning them to be in the heart of the opportunity.

I came on to both do deals but also help them think about expanding their brand and presence, based on my experience in the NYC market. It was a pretty sweet gig for me.  Not only did it enable me to keep a foot in the investing world, but also it gave me a chance to try my hand at helping to develop the marketing and operations of a venture firm.  Ultimately it became a training ground for building Interplay.

I believe that we achieved what we set out to do.  High Peaks has redefined itself as a go-to NYC firm, the team is deeply wired into the community and we’ve made tons of great bets on incredible companies.  Beyond that, with the addition of new team members and programs that help founders, High Peaks is poised to be a force in the NYC venture ecosystem for years to come.

My experience at High Peaks, however, went much deeper than business.  I’ve built lasting relationships with the team there.  Many of the folks around the table have become mentors or friends or both.

To: Adam, Akshay, Bela, Ben, Jeff, Renee, Russ, Tracy, my former compadre Rahul Gandhi and our fearless leader Brad – you have all and will continue to mean a lot to me.  Thank you.

The need to move on is bittersweet.  While I will miss working with the team at High Peaks, Interplay is growing rapidly and is consuming more of my time.  Interplay now helps to operate about a dozen companies, employs over 100 people and is in the process of adding a third partner to the roster.  We’re firing on all cylinders and building something special.

There’s no good way to express my gratitude to the High Peaks team for the opportunity that they afforded me, but to say the least this post represents the end of a chapter that has been tremendously important.

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