Unshackled Puts Down Roots in NYC

Unshackled Ventures
3 min readApr 13, 2022

Are you an immigrant building in NYC? We have great news for you, Unshackled is putting roots down in your city. We are excited to announce that our Senior Associate, Sarah Holmes, is now Brooklyn-based!

Sarah is returning to The City after 2.5 years in the Bay Area and is excited to meet people IRL. While Sarah officially grew up outside Cleveland, Ohio she is an East Coaster at heart. She walks and talks fast, loves a good bagel, and is always drinking iced coffee. At Unshackled, Sarah brings her background in recruiting and sales to our founders and has recently gone deep down the Web3 rabbit hole. Sarah has internally led investments in Consumer social, deep tech, and Cyber Security, and she works closely with our fem-tech, GenZ, and Web3 teams. She has reviewed over 4,000 deals, written 10 deal memos for our LPs, and is quickly becoming our founder’s go-to resource when they need intros to candidates and downstream capital. We are excited to promote her into the Senior Associate role and are constantly impressed by her ability to show empathy for the immigrant journey despite her multi-generational American roots. In fact, it’s those American roots that give her the historical context to appreciate and welcome the next generation of immigrants.

As a fund, we are excited to double down on the East Coast with Ale and Maria in Florida and now Sarah in NYC. In the current funding climate, we continue to stick to our focus of investing in immigrant teams as close to incorporation as possible.

What does this really mean?

  • we invest in people with unique insights into big problems; Like Parfait’s view on how to disrupt the archaic wig space

How Parfait aims to use AI to disrupt the $13 billion wig market

  • we look to truly be the first money in
  • we only invest in teams with one or more immigrant founders; we helped Kesava and Dmitry get O1 Visas

Venture Capitalists, Startup Founders Push to Revive Obama-Era Immigration Program

  • our average check size is $350k
  • we are a generalist fund and focus on a founder’s hunt for problem market fit; we invested in the GridRaster team years before they signed large government contracts

GridRaster raises $2m seed funds from Exfinity, others

  • we have immigration counsel in the partnership to handle all founder’s visa & Greencard processes, without any legal cost to the founders
  • we are pre-seed investors and see our capital best spent on customer discovery and problem validation; we invested in Brendan and Cate when they were in the market and space learning and validation process before they even completed the Pngme API

African fintech Pngme raises $15M for its financial data infrastructure platform

Why are we so excited about New York City?

The strength of this city is firmly rooted in its diversity — With over 40% of its residents being foreign-born, New York has long been a symbol of coming to America. We believe in the power of place and energy, there is nothing quite like the energy in New York and that feeling when you look all around and see the hustle and grind of everyone around you. At Unshackled, we could not be more excited to continue to invest in the city that never sleeps and to support the community that plays an integral role in the fabric of this city and this country.

If you are an immigrant and building in NYC please reach out to Sarah at unshackled vc . com or to kick off the fundraising conversation you can fill out the “pitch us” form on our website and Sarah is actually the first person to review all incoming information.



Unshackled Ventures

Pre-seed fund dedicated to investing in and unlocking opportunities for immigrant entrepreneurs.