I’ve now been a VC for almost eleven years. While most of my investing career was focused on B2B SaaS investments at Susa Ventures, two years ago I started pivoting into deep tech investing 1 via our new fund, Humba Ventures. As I started investing in areas like robotics, energy, biotech, and defense, I tried to learn more about their historical performance.
Since I’m an engineer and data guy by training (and since I’m betting my career on these categories!) I decided to dig into some PitchBook data 2 . This exercise convinced me that deep tech is the best place to invest and build right now, and that the following four assumptions about deep tech companies turn out to be misconceptions:
Many deep tech industries are huge, and there’s a lot of room for new players: batteries ($100b market), pharma ($1.5T), defense R&D ($150b in the US), industrial and warehouse automation ($200b total), and so on.
To take defense as a concrete example, this site lists awarded defense contracts. The DoD awards multiple 8-9 figure contracts daily. Any startup that captures just a few contracts of this size is basically a $1b+ company.