We back technical teams working on breakthrough products.

Technical Founders. Early Stage Technology.

Foothill Ventures is a technology-focused venture fund based in Los Altos, California. We make pre-seed, seed (preferred), and A-round investments in startups across software, life science, and deep tech.

Tsingyuan Ventures is now Foothill Ventures! Read about our rebranding here

Foothill Ventures backs entrepreneurs pursuing world-changing breakthroughs.

CardeaBio

World’s first “bio-gated transistor,” allowing biology to directly interface with electronics.

First
"Crispr on a chip"
Bio-gated Transistor
Seed
round
WeRide

The largest and most advanced autonomous taxi fleet in China.

5M
autonomous KM Traveled
Seed
round
MemVerge

Inventor of “Big Memory” computing to allow software to be run at blazing fast speeds.

800x
faster load times
Genetics
25X faster genetic sequencing
Metalenz

World’s first “meta-surface” lens, replacing conventional optics with a chip.

1000x
SMALLER THAN HUMAN HAIR
Pre-Seed
round
see who we back

World’s first “bio-gated transistor,” allowing biology to directly interface with electronics.

First
"Crispr on a chip"
Bio-gated Transistor
Seed
round
See portfolio

The largest and most advanced autonomous taxi fleet in China.

5M
autonomous KM Traveled
Seed
round
See portfolio

Inventor of “Big Memory” computing to allow software to be run at blazing fast speeds.

800x
faster load times
Genetics
25X faster genetic sequencing
See portfolio

World’s first “meta-surface” lens, replacing conventional optics with a chip.

1000x
SMALLER THAN HUMAN HAIR
Pre-Seed
round
See portfolio

Our portfolio is very broad.
We invest in 3 major areas.

We invest in seed stage companies that demonstrate technical differentiation. This means that one of their major reasons for future success will be technical or product-level superiority

What do we look for?

Strong technical founders

Our first criteria is the quality of the founding team. In addition to favoring strong technologists, we look for a consistent past record of leadership success.

Link to article

Diverse founders

We have had great success betting on immigrant founders, female founders and PhD founders. When a founding team contains diversity among the founders, we tend to lean in.

Link to article

Cross-disciplinary approach

We believe that very large opportunities are created when two disciplines collide. Many of our top investments are in cross-disciplinary areas like autonomous vehicles and synthetic biology.

Link to article

How Foothill Adds Value

"I have been working with the Foothill Ventures team very closely for a long time: we’ve worked together on our company's strategy, financing, and hiring. Over the years we have also built a close personal relationship that goes beyond any one area.”
Changming Liu, CEO, Stellar Cyber
“Foothill Ventures has always gone above and beyond other VCs for us. As a small example, they literally gave us their office to hold our “offsite”. More importantly, they are always there for strategic advice and support. They have built a community around their portfolio, which is largely comprised of technical founders (like us), so it is easy to find like-spirited people. And, for companies like ours that need it, they are skilled at bridging the gap between China and the US for financing and business development.”
Dr. Zoe Liu, CEO, Visionular
Developing therapeutics is a long, risky road that takes investors who are both patient and comfortable with scientific enterprise. The team from Foothill Ventures has consistently displayed both patience and scientific expertise. They are valuable members of our Board of Directors and among investors we’ve encountered, they are the top tier.”
Dr. Pamela Contag, CEO, Bioeclipse Therapeutics
“When Metalenz started in 2017, Foothill Ventures was one of the few VCs who had the technical capability to immediately see the potential of our deep tech. Since then, there have been multiple challenges—ranging from technical, business development, leadership, IP protection… you name it. Foothill Ventures has always been willing to dive into the weeds and help clear the way or to let the company grow on its own, whatever we need. We couldn’t ask for a better partner.”
Dr. Rob Devlin, CEO, Metalenz
See how we work