LA Venture: How M13’s Anna Barber Puts Local Startups First

This week on L.A. Venture, hear from Anna Barber, who left her position as managing director at Techstars in December to become a one of five investing partners at M13. Barber is the first repeat guest on the L.A. Venture podcast.

M13 is a venture engine that helps emerging founders launch and scale their brand. The company provides capital, mentors, assets and resources new businesses need to succeed. It focuses on Series A Investments.

Barber says her work for M13 has been both interesting and different than her time with Techstars. She shared how she enjoys the opportunity to work with companies both big and small, and how she is able to help large companies narrow their focus, while helping small companies broaden their reach.

Barber works with the Launchpad accelerator to help startups in their earliest stages, as part of a corporate partnership with Pepsi Co. and Proctor & Gamble. She also said M13 is partnering with Pepsi Co. to launch five new companies.

Core to M13 Ventures is a collaborative spirit, she said.

“We’re trying to do the hard work here of being able to really, truly unlock the value of what everyone — every single partner and every member of the team — came in the door knowing.”

She also shared why she found M13 appealing:

“It’s a venture engine focused on the future of consumer that has a big voice in the market, and a big impact on the future of consumer behavior.”

For Barber, it is critical to recognize her strengths. She describes herself as “people- and relationship-oriented” and tries her best to use her skills to advance “the thesis of the fund” which “is founders are the best position to help founders.”

Barber also highlighted her work as a partner with The Fund LA, which writes $50k checks to L.A.-based startups and entrepreneurs — small and large — that are focused on community building.

Barber shared her personal investing philosophy, her latest work with M13 and her excitement for the future of L.A. tech.

Anna Barber is an investing partner at M13.

“There has to be an emotional connection. And so the process of finding an emotional connection for those founders, to some of the ideas that we developed, it’s a messy, human process… I don’t believe you can dedicate five-plus years of your life to building a company If you don’t have a deep, personal passion.” —Anna Barber

dot.LA Engagement Intern Colleen Tufts contributed to this post.

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