Charles Sidman, Founder and Managing Partner, ECS Capital Partners, LLC, A DotCom Magazine Exclusive Interview

    About Charles Sidman and ECS Capital Partners:

    My professional career has had three broad phases. Starting in my teen years, I started and ran an Information Technology consulting business that involved designing and building digital hardware, creating sophisticated programs that would now be classified as Artificial Intelligence, and using both stand-alone (Edge) hardware as well as the distributed time-sharing networks that evolved into today’s Internet. Turning to biomedical research when I entered college, I earned AB and AM degrees in Biochemistry and a PhD in Immunology. For more than 40 years, I was involved in deciphering and applying basic immunological principles and mechanisms, helped develop the fields of genetic engineering and genomics, collaborated in neuroscience and behavior, and adopted the paradigm of complex systems for many problems in biological, cultural, and technological evolution. I also earned an MBA, and served as adjunct professor of management and ethics, during this period. Finally, after hearing the term Angel Investor for the first time during an academic sabbatical, I became involved in investing and policy work with early-stage enterprises, first as an angel investor and then as a crowdfunding advocate and venture capitalist. This last phase continues today with my founding of and full-time commitment to ECS Capital Partners, a venture fund focused on deep-tech and positive-impact companies. ECS Capital Partners, itself, constitutes a significant innovation for improving access to and results for every stakeholder in the early-stage asset class.

    Besides these professional pursuits, I am blessed with my wonderful wife and life partner Amy, two outstanding children, and five grandchildren who, together with their contemporaries, will inherit the present generations’ efforts.

    Non-professional interests include the reciprocal rights and obligations of citizenship, fine arts, the environment and our shared future on this planet or beyond.

    An innovative and globally active venture capital firm investing in seed and growth-stage technology-based companies that promise high financial return and positive human, social, or environmental impact.

    ECS Capital Partners was formed to address the following general problems with early-stage investing:

    – Democratizing and Broadening Participation. Most people and institutions legally qualified and allowed to participate do not do so, because they lack the requisite time, experience, knowledge, connections, etc. We provide a mechanism through which to participate in this asset class easily, professionally and effectively, for the benefit of the investors themselves, the entrepreneurs supported and society in general. Under present law, tax-sheltered retirement accounts of Accredited Investors are eligible to invest. A further attractive possibility is for parents or grandparents to establish an account, that will grow substantially, for the benefit of their descendants.

    – Improving Angel Investing. Active Angel investors and their groups typically provide the first outside money to support early-stage enterprises, but are usually limited in both geographic scope and the financial resources to participate effectively in later rounds. We provide globally diversified deal flow and additional financial resources to allow continuing investment into the most successful companies, thus protecting and ultimately harvesting the greatest returns from Angel investments.

    – Providing Family Offices, High Net Worth Individuals, Institutions, etc., with well-curated and proven early-stage deal flow. Such deep-pocketed players have more than adequate financial resources, but usually lack means to sift through and identify the most promising early-stage opportunities among the very numerous, non-transparent and global universe of start-ups. We provide a regular and reliable flow of de-risked, well-understood and flourishing early-stage companies for individual co-investment consideration in specific later rounds.