A startup is more than just an elevator pitch

At West Loop Ventures, we fund early stage founders that solve problems in institutional finance.  Our founders usually have hands on experience with the problems they are solving.  They build innovative and scalable solutions.  They have a growth mindset with openness to mentorship.  They also have an inside track to selling to their customers.

Meet The Partners > 




The Midwest is home to some of the best engineering talent in the world.  Electronic traders, Midwestern Universities, experienced financial services personnel and our Financial Services network bring unique sources of deal flow.  


Relationships & Reputation

On the trading floor they used to say, “your word is your bond” and that ethic is core to WLV’s practice.  Jeff and Kenny have developed relationships with co-investors and next round investors. They also work to build relationships with strategic partners that can help your business



Jeff helped start the new wave of early stage investing in Chicago. After being on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange board, he started Hyde Park Angels.  He understands the trials and tribulations of the startup experience from beginning to end.  He doesn’t have gray hair for kicks.  Kenny was one of the first high frequency traders in the world.  He spent years coding and creating mathematical models to trade listed companies worldwide  They have a combined 40 years of FinTech experience.   



Very few funds invest in early stage in the Midwest. Very few funds have WLV’s expertise and network in FinTech.  Our focus is seed rounds, and Series A rounds of investment.                                                                                          


Midwest Base 

Chicago is home to some of the biggest financial services companies in the world.  They are our customers, and a major source of talent.  Being in Chicago gives us a strategic advantage.  It’s also home to one of the busiest airports in the world so WLV will invest outside of the Midwest.  


Industry Disruption 

Our society is witnessing a rethink in how financial services are processed, reported, delivered, aggregated, and interacted with.  Financial service companies are hierarchal in nature, with vertical silos, and ripe for change. Entrepreneurs with years of experience are able to utilize technology cheaply to create new opportunities and solve problems at scale that previously were difficult to handle. New technology is creating new markets. People are connected like never before. 



As Chicago nears the tipping point toward recognition as a prominent city in the startup world, there is no doubt that Jeff will be recognized as one of the instrumental individuals that helped transform Chicago’s startup ecosystem.
— Tianyi Joe Zhu, Co-Founder, West Suburban Angels

When people in the industry think Chicago, they think groundbreaking Fin-Tech. We have the luxury of also calling the city, Home.