Twitter cofounder’s venture fund for ‘world-positive’ businesses

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Twitter cofounder Ev Williams joined a new venture fund aiming to assist companies working to change the world in a positive way.

The altruistic company, dubbed Obvious Ventures, calls itself a “world positive” venture capital company, and writes on its website:

“We’re entrepreneurs. We’ve helped a lot of companies launch, grow, and generate great financial returns. A few of these companies also deliver positive social and environmental benefits with every dollar of revenue they earn. We want to fund and build more of those.”

They go  on to add: “[World positive] businesses have advantages in the market and can outperform their more traditional peers. These types of businesses have sustainable positive impact. Their profits further their purpose, and their margins drive their mission.”

Williams has already used The Obvious Corporation as a startup incubator, where he launched Twitter and later Medium, “both of which were spun off into standalone businesses. Biz Stone, another Twitter cofounder, worked at Obvious while he launched his Q&A-based social network Jelly,” as Mashable writes.

In an interview with Recode, Williams said Obvious will seek to turn a profit…but with a different angle on who it selects to fund.

“It is inevitably a value judgment,” Williams said. “We have to hold ourselves to be intellectually honest: Do we really feel good about this? At scale, does this have an impact? We won’t do anything where the technology or product seems negative.”



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