Ex-Fin Capital general partner, who led its investment in Pipe, starts new venture firm
Peter Ackerson has departed from his role as general partner at fintech-focused venture firm Fin Capital and started a new firm, Audere Capital.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Ackerson -- who joined Fin Capital in August of 2019 -- stopped working at that firm in January of this year. While his profile shows that he became a general partner of Audere Capital in February 2023, it appears that he only updated his online presence to reflect his new position this week. There is not much public information about Audere other than it’s listed under the “Financial Services” category on LinkedIn and its tagline is “championing American innovation through early-stage technology investment.”
A source with familiarity of internal happenings at Fin Capital alleges there was tension between Ackerson and managing partner and founder Logan Allin around portfolio company alternative financing startup Pipe -- an investment into which Ackerson led and on whose board he sat. The exact circumstances around his departure are unclear.
For a while, Pipe was quite buzzy, catapulting to a $2 billion valuation on the premise that it helped SaaS companies generate non-dilutive cash with a model that provided upfront capital for recurring revenue.
But last November, Pipe announced that its three co-founders were stepping down from their executive roles and that a search for a new, “veteran” CEO had commenced.
Soon after that announcement, several sources who wished to remain anonymous — including one investor who says he passed on investing in the startup in its early days — told TechCrunch that they “heard” that Pipe had made roughly $80 million in loans to one or several crypto mining companies. The outfit or outfits have since gone out of business and the $80 million is believed to have been completely written off, said these individuals. Pipe denied the claims and Luke Voiles was named its new CEO in February. Fin Capital (called Fin VC at the time) led Pipe's $60 million financing in June of 2020.
When asked if the management shakeup and alleged preceding circumstances at Pipe had anything to do with Ackerson’s departure, Allin told TechCrunch in an emailed statement:
Peter was integral to the early growth of Fin Capital and we greatly appreciate his contributions. Peter departed the firm to pursue other opportunities and remains a close friend and ally of the firm. With respect to Pipe, our team is collaborating closely with Luke Voiles, who is a terrific CEO and has our full support as the team focuses on the next phase of growth for the company.
Ackerson declined to comment on the record.
According to LinkedIn, Maggie Sprenger joined his new firm, Audere Capital, in April. Both she and Ackerson are Kaufmann Fellows, according to their LinkedIn profiles.
Founded in 2018, Fin Capital invests in the B2B fintech sector with a focus on enterprise SaaS across the United States and Europe. According to Crunchbase, it has over $1 billion in assets under management. Fin was an investor in SoFi, and has backed the likes of Figure, Hummingbird and Elevate.
While at Fin Capital, which appears to have been his first VC role, Ackerson served on the boards of companies such as Maxwell, Teampay, Pipe, SamCart and Ternary. He previously served as CFO of SymphonyAI and sat on the board of numerous other companies.
Prior to SymphonyAI, Ackerson worked at McKinsey & Co. in the fast growth tech practice; with Wells Fargo in the global technology equity research group, including working on Facebook, ServiceNow, Marin Software, and Groupon IPOs; and with Merrill Lynch in the technology investment banking group.
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