The co-founder and former CEO of Spindle, a social discovery app that was acquired by Twitter last year, has joined Polaris Partners as venture partner on its technology investment team. Pat Kinsel started at the Boston-based firm as an entrepreneur-in-residence after Spindle was acquired. Polaris was an investor in Spindle.
Kinsel will focus on early-stage tech investments. In an email, he explained his decision to move from entrepreneur to investor:
“I’m a project person at heart and assumed I’d start another company by default, but my experiences meeting with other entrepreneurs over the past year have convinced me there’s never been a better time to be a disciplined Series A investor. Because of the flood of seed-funded companies over the past few years, the quality bar has been elevated and companies are now raising Series A money on the strength of real revenue growth or significant end-user adoption. The flip side is that the best companies are now raising Series A money at elevated valuations, setting the bar extremely high for themselves going forward.
I believe there’s a great opportunity to partner with entrepreneurs to help them navigate these challenges and I’ve found my own experiences to be highly relevant. I’ve loved working with a few incredible companies in Boston and San Francisco and I’m thrilled to bring capital to the table as I seek out great teams to partner with.”
Before co-founding Spindle, Kinsel headed teams at Microsoft FUSE Labs and Microsoft Startup Labs. During his time at the company, Kinsel led the development of Docs.com, a collaboration between Microsoft and Facebook that gives the social network’s access to Microsoft Office Online. He also helped bring Bing Social Search to market in 2009.
Kinsel’s specialities are mobile, search, data analytics, and collaboration and social software development. He is a mentor and visiting practitioner at the Harvard Innovation Lab (i-Lab) and a mentor at TechStars Boston.
In a press statement, Polaris managing partner Dave Barrett said Kinsel’s “ability to go deep into a technical space while maintaining a long-term strategic focus has enabled him to successfully advance innovation within both large corporations and emerging early stage companies. Having closely worked with him as an entrepreneur, we are thrilled that he will be applying these strengths to the current and future Polaris portfolio.”