Darwin Venture Management is a boutique venture investment firm headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, with offices in Hsinchu and the United States. Since our founding in 2009, we have managed seven funds, investing primarily in Series A/B, late-stage, and secondary funds. In 2022, we also launched an evergreen angel fund to enable more nimble bets on promising early-stage teams, and especially those coming from Taiwan’s superb academic and research institutions. This exposure across stages and borders, coupled with the strong technical background of our team, is the source of Darwin’s differentiation.
Our founding partners Dr. Simon Fang and Dr. Yaoting Wang met as PhD students at Stanford University. After receiving their doctorates in 1996, Simon went on to work with Texas Instruments and UMC for more than 10 years and later joined Asiatech Ventures as a partner, while Yaoting headed to Silicon Valley and became one of the few Taiwanese entrepreneurs to build two successful ventures: NumericTech (Nasdaq: NMTC and acquired by Synopsys in 2003) and ClearShape (acquired by Cadence in 2007). The pair also became angel investors, jointly backing more than 20 companies and achieving multiple successful exits. Seeing this success, they decided to co-found Darwin Venture Management in 2009.
From this humble beginning, Darwin has grown substantially in both assets and team strength. Two more Stanford alums joined as partners: Dr. YJ Tsai who specializes in communications and aerospace, and Emily Wu who focuses on semiconductors and novel materials. Seeing the rise of the mobile internet and new economy, Darwin also recruited partner Kay Lin who brings experience from IBM and noted software startups, and partner Likai Gu who ran Uber’s North Asia region as GM, and then founded and sold the popular podcast platform SoundOn.
Besides our team’s Silicon Valley roots, we also have ties with funds elsewhere in the US and in Japan. Given these links, and our experience building ventures in multiple geographies, we help teams take on the difficult task of expanding to international markets, picking the right partners, and cementing competitive positions.