Nabeel Hyatt

investor. founder. engineer. designer. geek.

I invest in early stage startups as a partner at Spark Capital. I'm obsessed with the strange alchemy of design and technology that can create entirely new markets.I've served on the board of and/or led rounds in The Bot Co, Cruise, Discord, Sonder, Postmates, Zum and some other companies I hope you will know soon enough. Previously I was a founder at three wildly different startups, from a MIT Media Lab hardware spinout to an online social gaming company. One IPO, one sizeable acquisition, one shutdown, all worth the chances that were taken. I started life as an engineer, then studied design, and have spent all of my professional life in startups. Specialization is for insects.The quote below from Charles Eames is a personal reminder I've had around since college. A mantra I use to remember great ideas don't always come from likely sources, and we should try to nudge the world in the direction of creative risk & playful spirit if we want to continue to innovate to something better.

โ€œToys are not really as innocent as they look. Toys and games are preludes to serious ideas.โ€ - Charles Eames


๐Ÿถ Boards
Startups where we led a round and I serve on the board are listed, all were early stage investments. Some are unlisted as they are still unannounced.
2024 - Bot Co - (stealth home robotics)
2024 - (stealth AI creative tool)
2023 - Adept - The AI co-pilot for your computer
2023 - Latent Technologies
2021 - Mountaintop Games
2021 - Descript - The power of AI in Creativity
2020 - Sonera
2019 - Instawork
2018 - Wild Type
2017 - Zum
2016 - Discord - How Discord Evolves
Prior
2020 - AllStripes - A Community for Cures (acq by Picnic Health)
2017 - Capella - A World of Information
2016 - Proletariat (acq. by Blizzard)
2016 - Sonder - Re-inventing the hotel & Congrats (ipo)
2015 - Cruise - The hard things, the hard way (acq. by GM)
2015 - Harmonix (acq. by Epic Games)
2015 - North - It Takes Time (acq. by Google)
2015 - Postmates - Unlocking the city & Thank you Postmates (acq. by Uber)


I don't attend many conferences, or write lengthy think pieces. I like working with a small group of people closely, solving hard problems, and letting the score take care of itself. But I'm also not trying to hide, so here is some of the digital exhaust I've left over the years.

๐Ÿ”ˆ Hallway Chat
My partner Fraser & talk regularly with each other, and sometimes some friends, about AI products that are worth paying attention to, how we've been integrating them into our work, and where we've seen AI working in the startups we partner with.

๐ŸŽค Other Podcasts / Talking
2023 - VC culture, Midjourney's Unique Growth Loops, and Google's AI Crisis
Unsolicited Feedback
2021 - Online Communities, Hardware, and Investing Frameworks
OnDeck Angels
2020 - Marketplaces with Sarah Tavel & Nabeel Hyatt
Venture Stories
2019 - The next billion dollar companies in frontier technology
LDV Vision Summit
2016 - 20Min VC: Investing Ahead of the Curve
20Minute VC
2016 - Investing in Disruptive Markets
Business Insider

๐Ÿ–‹ Blog posts / Writing
2023 - Building a board game with AI
2021 - OKRs
2020 - Layoffs
2020 - San Francisco & Civic Engagement
2017 - What happens when self-driving happens
2015 - Insiders vs Outsiders
2014 - Pitching your current investors
2013 - Moneyball VC Wonโ€™t Work
2013 - Startups are not a game of chess

๐Ÿ“ท Art
Gallery @ Deca