VC Corner Q+A with Charles Hudson


Charles Hudson is the Managing Partner at Precursor Ventures, a classic seed stage investment firm based out of San Francisco, CA. Precursor seeks to invest in a company's first round of institutional investment and focuses on investments in B2B software applications, B2C software and services, and connected hardware.

Prior to launching Precursor, Charles Hudson was a Partner with SoftTech VC, one of the most active seed stage investors in Internet and mobile startups. He focused on identifying investment opportunities in mobile infrastructure, mobile applications, and marketplaces. He was also the Co-Founder and CEO of Bionic Panda Games, an Android-focused mobile games startup.

Prior to joining SoftTech VC and co-founding Bionic Panda Games, Charles Hudson was the VP of Business Development for Serious Business until the company was acquired by Zynga in February 2010. Prior to Serious Business, he was the Sr. Director for Business Development at Gaia Interactive, an online hangout and virtual world for teens. Prior to Gaia, Charles worked in New Business Development at Google and focused on new partnership opportunities for early-stage products in the advertising, mobile, and e-commerce markets. Prior to joining Google, he was a Product Manager for IronPort Systems, a leading provider of anti-spam hardware appliances that was acquired by Cisco Systems for $830 million in 2007.

Charles spent several years working at In-Q-Tel, the strategic venture capital group for the Central Intelligence Agency. While at In-Q-Tel, he focused on identifying investment opportunities that could deliver significant value to the CIA and the commercial market in both the short and long term. He holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from Stanford University.


What is your fund's mission?

We invest in people over product at the earliest stage of the entrepreneurial journey

What is one thing you are excited about right now?

I'm really excited about how well many of our first-time founders are performing

Who is one founder you think we should watch?

Isa Watson at Envested

What is one question you ask yourself before investing in a company?

Is this a prize worth winning?

What is one thing every founder should ask themselves before walking into a meeting with a potential investor?

Do I have a clear sense of why an investor should be interested in what I'm building

Favorite business book, blog, podcast?

How I Built This with Guy Raz - check out + subscribe here!

What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not working?

I love to read non-fiction

What is one piece of advice you’d give every founder?

It's your company, you probably know it better than anyone else so trust your own instincts and judgment

When did you close your current fund?

December 2016

What do you think should be in a CEO's top 3 company priorities?

  1. Recruiting

  2. Fundraising

  3. Reinforcing culture

What and when was your very first investment? What struck you about them?

The very first investment from Precursor Fund I has not yet disclosed that they have taken money, so I can't say who it is :-)

Who is one leader you admire?

President Obama

What are the top 3 qualities of every great leader?  

  1. Empathy

  2. Self-awareness

  3. Courage