Refinery Ventures was founded in early 2017 with the intent to bridge the gap between the coasts and the midwest. Refinery focuses on disruptive technologies with an emphasis on digital health and human capital technology.
Why was Refinery Ventures created? To serve exceptional leaders between the coasts. Increasingly, entrepreneurs are seeking to create hypergrowth companies in markets with access to talent and quality of life that provides a competitive advantage. We’ve heard it for along time - we’re surrounded by great talent, research, and customers in the middle of the country but don’t have enough access to capital. Refinery was created to solve that.
“All leaders face adversity. Exceptional leaders thrive in it.” Steven Snyder, Leadership and the Art of Struggle
We believe your leadership skills have been refined through your experiences and you have much to offer. You are a catalyst for growth, and we know that capital follows growth. Leadership is the key to unlocking the opportunities across the country.
Refinery’s strategy was formed by Tim Schigel’s unique set of core experiences in every side of a startup lifecycle as a Silicon Valley tech founder, venture investor, and venture fund investor. Tim understands the challenges and opportunities for building hypergrowth companies outside of Silicon Valley.
Prior to Refinery, Tim launched the Cintrifuse Fund of Funds with capital from Cincinnati’s corporate community. He invested in and built a network of 15 early stage venture firms including leaders like Atlas Healthcare, Bullpen Capital, Greycroft, Lerer Hippeau Ventures, Techstars Venture, and many more. During this time, Tim also helped entrepreneurs raise nearly $150M in three years, and was on the board of DotLoop, which was acquired by Zillow.
Tim was a pioneer in the advent of social media by creating ShareThis, the globally recognized sharing tool which reaches 500 million people every month. ShareThis was recognized as one of the fastest growing companies in the Bay Area in 2013 when Tim won EY Entrepreneur of the year. ShareThis now has offices in Palo Alto, Chicago, New York, and London.
Previously, Tim was a partner of Blue Chip Venture Company, the first venture firm in Cincinnati with $600 million under management. He was involved in investments like Advertising.com (AOL/Time Warner), Get2Chip (acquired Cadence), and PlanetFeedback (Nielsen).
Tim grew up in Cleveland as the son of a steelworker and Vietnam veteran, where he received his B.S. in electrical engineering at Case Western Reserve University. He and his wife raised their three children in Cincinnati and they are successfully navigating their own life adventures.