Who We Are

We are a Silicon Valley venture capital firm purpose-built to help startup teams win in frontier technology and services. With $335 million of capital from a world-class investor base, Clear provides early seed capital, connections, and company-building insights and guidance. We work with bold, exceptional startup teams to grow their ideas into market-leading companies.

Founded by veteran company builders and venture investors Chris Rust and Rajeev Madhavan, our investments span industries covering artificial intelligence, performant IT infrastructure, enterprise software, semiconductors, information security, and more. 

Spectacular Markets OR Spectacular Growth Markets
We gravitate to those who aspire to lead high growth-potential nascent markets or disrupt large industries. We love solving the hard problems and challenges in the world and prefer the first-wave innovators.

Dauntless Doers
We search for the rare few who push boundaries and redefine what’s possible. These startup teams or founders will have a deep passion for their mission—and be able to explain the so-what and why of their approach in one declarative sentence.

Magnetic, High-Functioning, Complementary Teams
We are drawn to teams with a high need to win, often from humble beginnings. Brains, energy, and character—all important to us. These teams will have the power of shared purpose, an ownership mentality, and the drive to see it through.

Unrelenting Focus
We prefer businesses that want to be the best in the world at one narrowly defined and important thing. They set out to solve a pressing unmet need for customers to whom innovation is an opportunity.

Compelling Product or Service
We look for a product or service vision and business model worth fighting for—a disruptor, an innovator, or an engine of a virtuous growth cycle. Our portfolio companies must have a competitive advantage, proof of concept, and scalability.

We partner at the earliest stages of company creation and have been the first investors in 90% of our past portfolio companies. Our first investment is targeted between $100K and $5 million.

Because we take partnering seriously, we are partial to companies in the San Francisco Bay Area, our home turf. However, over the years, we have been active in investments on the East Coast as well as in Israel, Europe, and India. Great ideas and teams will always capture our interest.

Follow-on Financing
The difference between vision and dilution is execution. Over 250 follow-on rounds have given us insights on fundraising—we help our portfolio companies achieve follow-on financing success.

Unrelenting Focus
We prefer businesses that want to be the best in the world at one narrowly defined and important thing. They set out to solve a pressing unmet need for customers to whom innovation is an opportunity.

Partnership Approach
We team up with you to provide early capital, global connections, and company-building insights. Our “Clear Technology Partners”  provide ​world-class ​mentoring, and access to potential customers, the best talent, and insight​s​ on ways to scale your business.

Business Technology and Services
We invest in companies that help businesses win. We are fascinated by what, who, and how the future will be redefined and reimagined for all of us.

The Connected World
Over 50 billion devices will be connected in the next decade, as the internet becomes more pervasive than ever imagined. The combination of 5G, artificial intelligence, machine-to-machine (M2M) and internet of everything (IoT) will power this connected world.

Data As a Strategic Asset
Data is among the most important things a company owns. Data-driven applications will transform everything, across all industries.

Cloud and Mobile—Digital Transformations
Some have said that there is no business strategy without a cloud strategy. To which we say—we see a future where if it can be run in the cloud and consumed on mobile, it will be.

Applications of AI/ML and Natural Language Processing
Artificial intelligence and machine learning promise to transform vast industries—it has already begun.

CLEAR is a constant reminder of our code of conduct: Collaborative, Level​headed, Engaged, Accessible, Responsive.

Our terms are straightforward: we ​prefer ​priced rounds to notes and support strong stock grants to hire well.

We think board meetings are for company learning, not founder reporting. We ​​like ​thin board packages​ and short board meetings, and always​ strive to be part of the solution when pivots are required.

Work style
Like the startups we serve, we are result-oriented and team players. Our role is to help our startups create and leverage opportunities whenever possible. We add measurable value.