Passing the torch Featured

8:00pm EDT June 25, 2007

Tony Shipley had experienced a distinguished career, and in 2000, he sold the software company he started nearly two decades earlier. He was now faced with the question, “What now?”

In the summer of that year, he discovered that Cincinnati and the surrounding region had a funding gap in the local equity capital market. The area certainly had its share of traditional capital sources like banks and single investors, but venture capital companies had been successful and raised their minimum investment in any given company to $2 million or more. The companies that needed more than a few hundred thousand dollars but less than a couple of million faced funding challenges.

To address this problem, Shipley worked with a few other investors to create an angel fund to address these in-between groups. Over the next few months, the group added more members and created more structure, and in early 2001, the group adopted the name Queen City Angels. Within the first year, the group had grown to three times its original size and had pledges to invest several million dollars in early-stage companies.

In 2003, Shipley also worked to create a special fund to make small investments in young technology companies that are too early in the process to attract most investors.

Since its inception, Queen City Angels has invested in more than 22 companies, and now Cincinnati has a full spectrum of funding sources for companies.

HOW TO REACH: Queen City Angels, (513) 936-9004 or