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Capital Community

Lunar Startups Leadership Teams Up For New VC Firm


Tundra Ventures team (R to L): Adam Choe, Danielle Steer, Amanda Heyman

There’s a new fund in town, and it’s cold as ice.* Late last week, Tundra Ventures emerged from the frozen landscape and announced plans for a $10 million fund. Led by three familiar faces to the Minnesota startup scene (and Lunar Startups team members) — Amanda Heyman (Managing Partner), Adam Choe (Managing Partner), and Danielle Steer (Managing Partner)— the fund will target pre-seed and seed CPG, tech, and healthcare businesses but also has a particular focus on underrepresented entrepreneurs.

“Our team is trained to see potential that others overlook,” Heyman said in a LinkedIn post announcing the fund. “And we know how to nurture and de-risk that potential. That’s our secret sauce.”

Tundra also announced a group of initial investments, including three Lunar alumni (the fund says it’s working to, “formalize their alliance and catalyze their community”):

  • SoleSafe, a fintech company providing a cultural asset management platform and community for “sneakerheads” founded by Techstars and Lunar Startups alum Phil Terrill.
  • Maazah, a bright, bold, and balanced Afghan-style line of chutneys and condiments founded by Lunar Startups alum and current Kroger accelerator participant Yasameen Sajady.
  • We Sparkle, a mobile-first, AI-powered suite of tools tailored to small businesses and capable of hyper-growth in mobile-first markets, founded by Techstars and Lunar Startups alum Michelle Tran Maryns.
  • Runner, a curated labor marketplace that connects the most inclusive startups with operations talent, founded by Backstage Capital founder and Managing Partner Arlan Hamilton.

*That’s just a bad ice pun. The people involved are quite pleasant.

Alex Skjong
Alex oversees the content produced for BETA, Twin Cities Startup Week, and When he’s not writing or editing, there’s a good chance he’s enjoying a refreshing brew and explaining the merits of heavy metal (of which there are many).