Fifty Years

Fifty Years

Fifty Years is a venture capital seed fund based in San Francisco, California founded by Seth Bannon and Ela Madej in 2016 and focuses on investing in the impact technology market.

Fifty Years is an entrepreneur-run early stage venture fund based in San Francisco, California focused on investing in technology companies. Fifty Years funds companies which are attempting to solve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, with a focus on synthetic biology and food technology companies. Fifty Years VC focuses primarily on seed stage investments into companies with built products and some market validation.

The fund was founded by Seth Bannon and Ela Madej in 2016, and formed its name from a famous essay "Fifty Years Hence" written by Winston Churchill in 1932.


Notable companies Fifty Years VC has invested in include: Geltor, Memphis Meats, Starsky Robotics, Astranis, and Cofactor Genomics.

In July 2019, Fifty Years VC announced they raised $50 million for their second fund. The fund will be used to invest in companies employing technology to improve food supply, healthcare and other areas with global impacts.

Fifty Years VC produces and supports Impact.Tech, which is an event series for scientists, entrepreneurs and investors focused on solving problems through business.


Funded Companies


Nurx is a telemedicine service company that delivers oral contraceptives and various testing kits to its customers. It was founded in 2015 and has headquarters in San Francisco, California.

Seattle Food Tech is a food manufacturing technology and production company producing plant-based meats. They make plant-based food and plant-based chicken nuggets.

Astranis is a satellite communications company building small telecommunication satellites founded in 2015 by John Gedmark.

Geltor is a cellular agriculture company making essential proteins, such as collagen and gelatin, using microbes in their own bio-fermentation recombinant protein production facility.

A speciality chemical manufacturing company replacing petroleum-based chemicals with alternatives made from plant-based substitutes.

A company using RNA to diagnose disease and to develop biomarkers that predict treatment outcomes. Cofactor is founded by Jarret Glasscock.

Avro is a life sciences company, located in Canada and founded in 2016 by Shakir Lakhani and Keean Waterloo, Ontario, that makes skin patches capable of delivering generic drugs.

DNA synthesis company using enzymatic DNA synthesis based in San Francisco.

64-x is a biotechnology company using genetic engineering to create organisms capable of performing biomanufacturing, bioremediation, and improve human health.

Company working on in vitro diagnostics based in Canada.

Brave Care is a pediatric urgent care clinic in Portland, Oregon founded in 2017 by Darius A Monsef IV.

EARTH AI is a San Mateo, California-based mineral deposit exploration company founded by Roman Teslyuk in 2016.

A company building robots to automate experiments of life scientists

A a biotechnology company developing a drug-screening platform for the acceleration of drug discovery by combining custom laboratory assay and proprietary machine learning algorithms.

Microverse is a company that provides online education for software developers. It was founded in 2017 and is located in San Francisco, California.

Company developing a protein barcoding platform to employ powerful multiplexed measurement.

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Ela Madej

Partner & Founder

Katariina Helaniemi

Operations at

Richard Chen


Seth Bannon

Partner & Founder

Shuo Yang


Further reading


Chafing Against Regulation, Silicon Valley Pivots to Pandemic

Andrew Leonard


April 15, 2020

Climate change isn't going anywhere, and investment could soon rise - Marketplace

Molly Wood


June 9, 2020

Fake-meat startups rake in cash amid food supply worries - BNN Bloomberg

Larissa Zimberoff


May 1, 2020

Fifty Years — The new Silicon Valley VC that wants to save the world AND make money

Mike Butcher

Oct 3, 2016

Fifty Years Offers Unusual Funding to Its Startups Tackling Coronavirus

Tomio Geron


March 26, 2020

Fifty Years' $50 million fund signals tech's turn toward impact | ImpactAlpha

David Bank


July 2, 2019

Meet The Forbes Under 30 Founders Leading The Next Billion-Dollar Startups

Alexandra Wilson


May 28, 2020

Silicon Valley is throwing money behind Covid-19 efforts, hoping for results

Shannon Liao, CNN Business


May 27, 2020

Taking risks on 'impact tech' to make exponential progress toward the global goals (video) | ImpactAlpha

David Bank


October 31, 2019

Tech mobilization around COVID starts to show results | ImpactAlpha

Dennis Price


April 8, 2020

Tech Startups Ask Workers to Trade In Salary for Stock

Shelly Banjo


April 17, 2020

Documentaries, videos and podcasts


Danny In The Valley: Fifty Years' Seth Bannon: "When a bear chases you into a tree, how do you get down?" on Apple Podcasts

March 25, 2020

Our Planet: Our Business.

June 27, 2019

Seth Bannon, Founding Partner at Fifty Years on How Science Startups Build the Future | Ausha

May 6, 2020

Seth Bannon: Combating pandemics with technology

April 8, 2020



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