At the moment, we are able to support startups that are based in the US, Canada, EU, and UK.
We generally avoid consumer-facing or advertising driven companies, two-sided marketplaces, social networks and network-effect businesses, unless the founder has a proven track-record growing such businesses profitably. We prefer startups that have unit economics such that each additional user is incrementally profitable at any scale.
We review and respond to initial applications within a couple weeks.
Feel free to apply and include the terms of your last raise and the investors involved in the application. You can also make a specific request for an exception to our standard terms. We review each exception request on a case-by-case basis based on the strength of the founder’s justification.
We have 3 programs:
Idea stage: 3% equity
Discover stage: 6% equity
Build stage: 20% equity
Startups have the ability to go through multiple programs, with MassLight taking equity for each program.
We work with startups from very early idea stage to post-seed. If you need a technical team, please reach out.
Idea to post-seed. We are typically the lead investor, but it's not a requirement.
No. We devote ourselves full-time to each startup and we expect founders to do the same.
Our primary focus is partnering with full time, non-technical co-founders who have deep domain experience in a vertical market.
We look for founders who can use their industry contacts and experience for client acquisition, sales, and marketing. We are especially interested in founders in highly regulated markets or verticals that require specialized knowledge.
Yes. If you've applied before and not gotten in, we encourage you to reapply if you’ve made progress since your last application.
We try to respond to applications within 2 weeks. Sometimes we may take a bit longer; there's a large amount of applications coming in daily.
Like most investors, we are unable to sign an NDA. We speak to many startups, often direct and indirect competitors, and do our best to keep confidential information appropriately siloed.
We are only able to accept a small fraction of the companies that apply. We tend to make that decision fairly quickly, usually no more than a month, often sooner.
The volume of build-for-equity applications is so large that we can’t comment on your application individually, but we only work with startups when think our team will add value. We often decline startups we think will succeed because we aren’t confident in our own ability to help.
We review each and every application. While we can’t work with everyone, and we can’t comment on specific applications, we will always let you know either way.
There are no fees. We invest engineers, cash and mentorship in startups in exchange for an equity stake.
It is a capped YC SAFE with a pro-rata side letter.
We are only able to accept a small fraction of the companies that apply. We tend to make that decision fairly quickly, usually no more than a month, often sooner. If you submit your application on time, and your application is approved we'd start work during the next cycle.
Yes. MassLight typically sets up a syndicate/series-SPV to exercise our pro-rata interest in a follow-on build-for-equity round. We have relationships with investors who track our build-for-equity portfolio companies and participate. If you are an institutional investor interested in access to our build-for-equity portfolio, please contact us by email at [email protected].