CW City Fund

AOL founder and prominent tech investor Steve Case launched a “Rise of Rest” campaign in 2014 to advance entrepreneurship in America’s overlooked cities. He built the campaign on a problem that suggested massive opportunity—75% of venture capital is deployed in three cities (San Francisco, New York and Boston). Case and his team completed eight bus tours with visits to forty-three cities between 2014 and 2020. This led to 200 investments from two $150 million funds. And some of those deals are co-investments with Commonwealth. 


Inspired by Rise of the Rest, Commonwealth hosted pitch competitions in Indianapolis, Tampa and Raleigh to demonstrate that investing at the local level is a premium strategy to achieve both impact and strong returns for investors.


Following the three city pitch competitions, Commonwealth raised over $20M in seed capital to fuel expansion of COhatch—an innovative coworking concept that spurs both entrepreneurship and community renewal—in 15 cities across the Midwest and Southeast. The CW City Fund is designed to enhance COhatch’s impact strategy in each of these cities through three services:


·       STRATEGIC CONVENING – we’ll co-host events in the cities similar to Commonwealth’s initial city-based pitch
competitions to promote existing talent and opportunities.

·       THOUGHT LEADERSHIP – Commonwealth produce research, offer consulting services and provide advisory services to investors and entrepreneurs to renew their cities through impact investment.

·       INVESTMENT – the CW City Fund will make impact investments across the 15 cities annually.



Rethinking Wealth

Click the video to watch Jay Hein’s 2018 remarks casting vision for the Commonwealth model.

Click the video to watch Jay Hein’s 2020 remarks explaining the value of investing in our cities.

Click the video to watch Dr. Amy Sherman’s presentation on “Making the City Rejoice”