Alumni Ventures Exits JUMP Bikes

The Power of AV’s Alumni Connections

Person riding a bike through a crosswalk
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2 min

Originally founded in 2010 as Social Bicycles, JUMP Bikes has been a leading innovator in the bike-share market. Their business model reimagines the future of city transportation.

The JUMP Bikes opportunity checked a lot of boxes for us. We saw a world-class management team, a large and growing bike-share market, demonstrated traction, an established co-investor, and a promising partnership with Uber — which looked like a potential acquirer.

The JUMP deal was led by AV’s fund The Yard Ventures (for Harvard alumni), with participation from our Total Access Fund.

Relationships and an efficient investment process were AV’s two greatest advantages in making the deal happen: We got access to the deal through a relationship with one of our Harvard alumni connections on the C-level team at JUMP. We managed a short deadline and small investment window through our team hustling to complete vetting and due diligence in just 10 days — working over Thanksgiving.

The upshot: We invested in JUMP Bikes in 2017. Six months later, JUMP was acquired by Uber in 2018 at a publicly reported price of $200M through a mixture of cash and Uber stock. Once Uber’s post-IPO lock-up period expired, AV was able to sell its non-escrowed Uber holdings for a strong return for our investors.1

Two Takeaways

  • Most individual investors could not have gained access to this opportunity. We used the power of our network and our honed processes to get into the deal.
  • We play the long game in venture investing, as our funds have 10-year terms. This early win, only two years into The Yard Ventures Fund 2, defies the common wisdom in VC that “your lemons ripen first.” That’s reason to celebrate — and to congratulate JUMP Bikes, the Yard team, our investors, and the AV community.

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1All AV Fund investments described above are for illustration purposes only. These investments are not intended to suggest any level of investment returns; not necessarily indicative of investments invested by any one fund or investor. Many returns in investments result in the loss of capital invested. These investments are not available to future fund investors except potentially in certain follow-on investment options. To see the performance of each exited investment for all Alumni Ventures funds over the last twelve months and our historical performance since 2014, click here.