We're on your side of the table.

Garuda is an angel fund run by full-time operators. We spend every day on the founder side of the table. Through Garuda, we invest in ambitious founders building the iconic companies of tomorrow. If this sounds like you, we'd love to be your first investor.

James Richards

Product & Corporate Development at TriNet, a publicly traded HR & benefits company. Founder & CEO of Teleborder (acq TriNet). Advisor, YC Startup School. Forbes 30 under 30.
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Rishi Taparia

VP & GM at Poynt, a next-generation payments & commerce company. Former venture investor at Matrix Partners and Scale Venture Partners. Recovering fintech investment banker.
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Our Investments

Self-Service Applicant 
Tracking System

Corporate Spend Management

Using Smart Meters to Predict Energy Demand

Cloud Infrastructure Optimization

Payments & CRM for
Early Education

Software for Hardware Manufacturing

Simplifying Prior Authorizations

Software for Affordable Housing Management

Universal API for
Mobile Money

Powering Demand Response via API

Digital Savings & 
Gifting for Children

Applying Speech-to-Text & Analytics to Recruiting

Machine Learning & 
NLP for Everyone

Online Academy for
Professional IT Training

Powering Modern Insurance Distribution

Backend-as-a-Service
for Developers

Accelerating Treatments for Rare Disease Patients

Digitizing African Consumer Spending

First Cryptocurrency Exchange on Lightning

Structuring All Unstructured Data

About Us

Investment Philosophy

We think that the iconic companies of tomorrow will be built by founders who make bold bets about the future that turn out to be right. We seek to invest in these founders as early as possible, often as their first investor.

We make decisions independently and quickly. That means we don't care "how the round is going" or who else is in. In fact, we think the best startups often sound like bad ideas at first because the founders are reasoning backwards from the future and the world hasn't caught up to them (yet). So if you have a conventionally bad idea that you think will actually change the world, we’d love to meet you.

Investing as early as we do constrains us in a few  ways. First, we only invest when one of us has an unfair advantage as an investor - usually because of our operating experience, network, or access. Second, we have a bias toward founding teams with relevant domain and technical experience. Last, we get particularly excited about opportunities whose time has only recently come.

We typically invest $50,000. We both live in San Francisco but are happy to invest in companies located all over the world; given where we came from, it would be ironic if we didn't (see "What's a Garuda").

Working With Us

We aspire to be the people you text when you've had a hard day. We're full-time operators ourselves, so we get it. We think that our ability to offer our operating advice and networks makes us value-add investors. But we're also happy to generally stay out of your way and give you space if that's what you prefer. Either way, we will always have your back and are willing to wait as long as it takes for the market to prove us all right.

How to Find Us

To get in touch, either ask someone we both know for an introduction or just email us cold at partners [at] garudaventures.com. We especially welcome hearing from people who are thinking of starting a company but haven't made the leap just yet, because a few years ago, that was us.

What's a Garuda?

A garuda is a mythical bird popular in Hindu and Buddhist mythology and the national emblem of Indonesia. We met each other 22 years ago as 6th graders in Jakarta, Indonesia. Somehow we both ended up in Silicon Valley. When we decided to raise a tiny angel fund together, we wanted a name that reminded us of our roots and our memories growing up together. Hence, Garuda.