This article showcases our top picks for the best Illinois based Venture Capital companies. These startups and companies are taking a variety of approaches to innovating the Venture Capital industry, but are all exceptional startups and companies well worth a follow.
We tried to pick companies across the size spectrum from cutting edge startups to established brands.
We selected these startups for exceptional performance in one of these categories:
- Innovative ideas
- Innovative route to market
- Innovative product
- Exceptional growth
- Exceptional growth strategy
- Societal impact
Top Illinois Venture Capital Companies
S2G Ventures is a multi-stage food and agriculture venture fund investing in entrepreneurs whose products and services meet the shifting demands for healthy and sustainable food. The firm’s mission is to catalyze innovation to meet consumer demands for healthy, sustainable, and local food.
S2G will identify sectors across the food system that are ripe for change, and form a multi-stage portfolio including seed, venture, and growth-stage investments. It seeks to invest in agriculture, ingredients, infrastructure and logistics, food safety and technology, retail and restaurants, and consumer brands.
S2G Ventures was established in 2014 and is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.. .
Abbott is engaged in pharmaceuticals and manufacturing healthcare products. It developed the first HIV blood-screening test.
Its product portfolio includes Norvir, a treatment for HIV; Synthroid, a synthetic thyroid hormone; Depakote, an anticonvulsant drug; and Humira, a drug for rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and more. Its medical tests and diagnostic instrument systems are manufactured for usage in hospitals, laboratories, blood banks, and physician offices to diagnose and monitor diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, cancer, heart failure and metabolic disorders, and more.
Abbott also operates its product manufacturing segment known as Abbott Point-of-Care. It manufactures diagnostic products for blood analysis.
It also provides cardiac assays to the emergency room. It currently has 90,000 employees and operates in over 130 countries.
Abbott was established in 1888 by Chicago physician Wallace Calvin Abbott. It is based in Abbott Park, North Chicago, Illinois..
In an economy where it’s almost impossible for small businesses to get traditional loans, Lendr offers fast, friction-free cash advances to help small and medium business owners focus on what they do best: grow. They say yes more because they consider more.
It’s not just about your credit score. They look at your full story—the health of your business, your real-time performance and potential—so they can customize the right solution right now.
There are no hidden fees. No lengthy paperwork.
Just honest, transparent lending that helps you get the working capital you need—when you need it—to seize the opportunities you deserve.. .
PEAK6 Investments LLC
PEAK6 uses technology to find a better way of doing things. The company’s first tech-based solution was developed in 1997 to optimize options trading and, over the past two decades, the same formula has been used across a range of industries, asset classes and business stages to consistently deliver superior results.
Today, PEAK6 seeks transformational opportunities to provide capital and strategic support to entrepreneurs and forward-thinking businesses, helping to unlock potential and activate what is into what ought to be. PEAK6’s core brands include: PEAK6 Capital Management, Apex Clearing, National Flood Services and Evil Geniuses..
Allstate is one of the largest U.S. property-casualty insurers.
Personal auto represents the largest percentage of revenue, but the company offers homeowners insurance and other insurance products. Life insurance contributes about 10% of revenue.
Allstate products are sold in North America primarily by about 10,000 company agencies.. .
Founded in 2011, G Squared is aligned to a fundamental shift – venture-backed companies stay private longer. As a result, private companies need both primary capital to continue their growth trajectory and transitional capital to provide liquidity to early investors, current and former employees, and other sellers.
Positioned at the crux of this liquidity access challenge, G Squared partners with portfolio companies throughout their lifecycle using a fundamentally different approach than traditional VCs. We invest in companies that challenge the status quo and demonstrate a clear path to superior returns, partnering world-class entrepreneurs tackling big problems.
G Squared funds have invested in household names such as 23andMe, Coursera, Instacart, Lyft, Pinterest, and Spotify, and in the next generation of disruptors including Asana, Blend, Bolt, Brex, Capsule, Flexport, Impossible Foods, Toast, and Turo.. .
Bar Nothin’ Capital
Bar Nothin’ Capital is an investment management firm seeking funds focusing on private and public markets. The firm utilizes its expertise and internal/external capital debt/equity sources in order to drive outcomes in mental healthcare.
It aims to provide affordable and accessible mental and behavioral healthcare and filling gaps. The Chicago, Illinois-based firm was launched in 2017 by Jea Yu..
Tegus is a qualitative research platform for buy-side investors. The Tegus database is a smart-searchable platform of peer-led expert call transcripts by investors for investors.
Our on-demand transcripts enable investors to get up to speed on a name in hours, not days. With Tegus, investors can get into the nuts and bolts of a business, leveraging expert research on-demand.
For custom calls, Tegus offers white glove service to connect our customers with top experts, all without the usual markup. Our database customers enjoy custom sourced 1:1 expert calls at the adviser’s cost..
Signature Bancorporation is a commercial banking company. Signature Bancorporation, Inc.
operates as a bank holding company for Signature Bank that offers personal and commercial banking services. Signature Bancorporation, Inc.
Sigora is a provider of utility-management systems engineered for frontier markets. For established urban grid utilities and rural micro-grid developers, Sigora’s platform transforms energy access into bankable business.
Leveraging specialized hardware, web-managed software, and simple payment solutions, the company’s platform streamlines bill collection, reduces revenue losses, deters energy theft, and increases operational efficiency for energy providers operating in emerging markets. It’s easy to oversimplify the capabilities of a simple electric meter, but in reality Sigora’s meter is offering the “operating system” for financeable micro-utility business models.
Sigora was founded in 2016 and is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.. .
Chaifetz Group is a venture capital and private equity firm specializing in early and mid-stage growth companies. Led by entrepreneur and investor Dr.
Richard A. Chaifetz, Chaifetz Group has an established track record of building businesses and working with management teams to create lasting value.
Chaifetz Group was founded in 2012 and is based in Chicago, I.L.. .
DRW is a diversified trading firm that combines technology, research, and risk management to capture trading and investment opportunities. They value autonomy and the ability to quickly pivot to capture opportunities, and so they operate using their own capital and trading at their own risk.
It is headquartered in Chicago with offices in the U.S. and Canada as well as Europe and Asia, they trade all the things you’d expect from a leading firm, including Fixed Income, Equities, FX, Commodities, and Energy.
They also have leveraged their expertise and technology to expand into three non-traditional strategies: real estate, venture capital, and crypto-assets. They operate with respect, curiosity, and an open mind, and the people who thrive here share their belief that it’s not just what they do that matters but also how they do it.
It’s a place of high expectations, integrity, innovation, and a willingness to challenge the consensus.. .
UL Ventures is the venture investment and acceleration arm of UL. UL is a premier global independent safety science company that has championed progress for more than 120 years.
Its 14,000 professionals are guided by the UL mission to promote safe working and living environments for all people. UL uses research and standards to continually advance and meet ever-evolving safety needs.
We partner with businesses, manufacturers, trade associations and international regulatory authorities to bring solutions to a more complex global supply chain.. .
LaSalle Investment Management
LaSalle Investment Management operates as a real estate investment management firm, with nearly 700 employees in 18 countries worldwide. The company manages $46.7 billion (as of Q2 2012) of private and public property equity investments.
The firm’s client base includes public and private pension funds, insurance companies, governments, endowments, and private individuals from across the globe. While international commercial real-estate properties represent the main investment vehicles that the company specializes in, emerging market entities are also an area of expertise..
312 Capital is a proprietary commodity option and future trading company. They specialize in short term interest rate products.
312 Capital’s trading strategy is unique to the industry and has been time tested for 15 years. Their strategy is called pseudo market-making, which operates in a unique space where positions are held between three days to three months.
They do not compete on execution speed. Analytics is the foundation for their pseudo market-making / price taking scalable strategy..
Sente manages an international technology startup program that brings corporations, public institutions, investors, and startups together to scale innovative ideas from around the globe in one of the largest and most diverse B2B ecosystems in the world: Chicago. Through its robust methodology and expertise in technology development and innovation management, Sente has assisted dozens of startups from more than 15 countries that have grown out of idea stage into the growth stage.
Its extensive network of corporations, technology industry executives, and domain experts in the US help these startups enter into US markets based on a well-thought and tested commercial development plan.. .
VCapital is an online investment platform that enables its users to invest in companies. The platform enables its users to browse a range of investment portfolios.
They can then preferred in their preferred business or project. Furthermore, it provides advisory services and news to its users.
VCapital was launched in 2015 by Len Batterson and James Vaughan.. .
CMT Capital Markets Trading
CMT is a dynamic proprietary trading and financial services firm with a proven track record. Founded in 1997, CMT has adapted and succeeded in bull and bear markets, enduring the swings and dips of the economy for nearly 2 decades.
CMT is a known player in the low-latency, high frequency trading scenes both in the US and Europe. In addition CMT has a successful private equity and venture capital group, investing and sitting on the boards of early stage corporations in various industries..
Mazarine Ventures is an investment advisory and fund management firm supporting our Limited Partners via our technology fund, which has a thesis that seeks to capture high-growth investment opportunities relating to water/wastewater. Our vision is straightforward – the broad and diversified global market for innovative hardware and software technologies that address water/wastewater challenges is underserved by venture capital.
We have changed that by seeding, launching, and managing a highly-targeted venture fund that is investing in next-gen innovations to solve old problems.. .
High Street Capital
High Street Capital are business builders. They are dedicated to, and passionate about, finding differentiated companies and fundamentally improving them.
They back this strategy with their own personal capital. Their approach starts with seeking opportunities to improve selected businesses within the lower middle market.
It includes a willingness and ability to offer flexible and creative solutions to business owners looking for liquidity. Their process continues with due diligence focused on crafting tailored strategies to build winning businesses with strong growth prospects.
They begin with an end in mind and exit when others wish to buy. Their strategy is anchored by valuation discipline and prudent use of leverage in their investments.
HSC’s process is at the heart of their ability to build value consistently for their investors. It is a process that involves experience, expertise, relationships, creativity and the capacity for complexity.
They work hard and demonstrate focus and commitment to their investments throughout their ownership. As a team they are results-oriented, creative, and tenacious problem-solvers.
Vitalize Venture Group
Vitalize Venture Group is a VC fund and angel network that annually invests into pre-seed and seed stage startups. Vitalize Venture Group is an early stage VC platform that consists of two funding entities: VitalizeVC and IrishAngels.
VitalizeVC is a $16M fund that invests in B2B software, and IrishAngels is an angel group comprised of 230 investors that invests in B2B, consumer, and medical companies. Vitalize Venture Group has invested in over 50 companies, deploying $40M in the capital since its launch in 2012.
It was founded in 2012 and is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.. .
GATX Corporation, founded in 1898, is the global railcar lessor. We strive to be recognized as the finest railcar leasing company in the world by our customers, our shareholders, our employees, and the communities where we operate.
We own railcar fleets in North America, Europe, and Asia. In addition, we operate the largest fleet of US-flagged vessels on the Great Lakes and own and manage other long-lived, widely-used assets.
We operate through four business segments: Rail North America, Rail International, American Steamship Company (“ASC”), and Portfolio Management.. .
Prota Ventures is a venture-building and early-stage investment firm engaged in investing in early-stage companies. The firm aims to launch inspiring new ventures and invest in early-stage founders.
It generates ideas internally and co-lab projects with organizations and founders seeking strategic partnerships, conduct comprehensive experiments to test the viability of new teams, markets, and products, designs and builds hardware and software, including financial models and optimal legal structures for success, and helps companies bring prototypes to life, acquire customers, and recruit talents to facilitate growth. It was founded in Chicago, Illinois in 2016..
They are a dynamic, industrial holding company dedicated to investing in, growing and starting businesses. Founded in 1993, they invest, grow and provide strategic expertise for scalable early stage, high growth, and mid-sized businesses.
Along the way, they have expanded globally into diverse industries including manufacturing, distribution, technology, big data, engineering and energy efficiency.. .
Leading R&D destination and technology conglomerate of CEE & CIS region investing in innovations, infrastructure, alternative energy development and 4.0 industry sectors worldwide building global brands, startup ecosystem, hi-tech solutions and products, venture capital funds and manufactures. We select and grow most promising regional and international projects providing strategic development programs: seed & later stage investments, educational, legal, global staffing and marketing services.
DWG Holdings currently incorporates the following facilities: DWG Investment Banking (Ventures) – privately-owned and managed investment funds that raise, make, and manage direct equity, equity-related investments, and assets in global, new, expanding or privatizing emerging market companies, infrastructures, and manufactures DWG AeroSpace Engineerings – global aircraft and space equipment manufacturer DWG Transportation Systems – global manufacturer of locomotives including electric, high-speed trains, hyperloop technology, and urban transport DWG Invention Labs – fully-equipped workspace, testing labs for hardware inventors and global technology manufacturing innovators with access to national plants and the world’s best qualified scientific technology staff and production sites in the CEE and globally DWG Custom R&D Centers – Software & Product Development business units for Fortune 500, global midsize innovation corporates and growing stage startups. DWG Motors – global automotive brand, R&D, concept design studios and manufacturing facilities for hybrid and all-electric vehicle production DWC (DeltaWeb) Consulting – international business and project management consultancy DWG Alternative Energy Hub is a brand new unit for alternative energy development projects to scale up most promising low-carbon technologies DWG Electronics – global technology brand for consumer portable devices, houselhold appliances and enterprise equipment design and production.
CHS Capital LLC
CHS Capital is a Chicago-based private equity firm that invests in the middle market. The company partners with management teams to add value through human capital initiatives, performance improvement actions, and strategic growth activities.
It is focused on accelerating growth, enhancing capabilities and resources, and positioning companies for attractive exits through a wide range of capital market and economic conditions. Over 25 years, CHS Capital has completed investments in over 395 businesses and has raised a total of $2.9 billion of capital..
Chopper Trading is a technology-based proprietary trading firm without any clients, customers, or shareholders; they trade the firm’s capital for the benefit of the firm. This provides a freedom and agility to adapt quickly to the ever-changing market.
It also enables us to create a casual and comfortable work environment. They trade on virtually every major domestic exchange including CME, CBOT, and NYSE, plus many major international exchanges including LSE and ICE.
Chopper believes in responsible market participation with fair and evenly applied standards that increase transparency, stability, and efficiency in the market.. .
AALegal Cash Advance
AALegal Cash Advance makes loans to plaintiffs in personal injury and workers’ compensation lawsuits. It is regulated by the State of Illinois and can make loans up to $45,000.00 at an interest rate not to exceed 36%.
The operator is an attorney and former banker and the chief underwriter is a personal injury and workers’ compensation attorney.. .
RCM Alternatives pairs high net worth individuals, financial advisors, and institutional investors with commodities based alternatives investments through mutual funds, managed accounts, and private funds. And this isn’t their first rodeo, with RCM’s senior team having helped investors identify and access top tier managers for more than 15 years.
Their clients and team currently allocate to 50+ managers with combined assets in the billions.. .
Beacon Funding provides equipment financing and leasing services to businesses throughout the United States. Our payment option programs are much more convenient and flexible than traditional banking.
Combining The combination of these that programs with the best customer service in the industry is why our clients customers keep coming back to us to help them grow their businesses.. .
Ms. Tech is an organization, founded in Chicago, that is helping women start and scale their businesses through training, resources, mentors and valuable connections.
Determined to see a higher number of women-founded startups capture funding, press and to create role models for future generations of women in tech.. .
Omkara Ventures is a hybrid venture company that invests in the people, ideas, and technologies that create impact and drive social change. We’re an agile and data-driven team of investors, business advisors, consultants, digital strategists and more that accelerate growth for startups through a technology-focused, data-driven, and human-centered approach.
From strategic planning and digital marketing to software development and investment capital, our mission is to provide our partners with 360-degree capabilities and execution beyond the scope of traditional companies.. .
The Alliance of M&A Advisors
The Alliance of M&A Advisors® (The Alliance) is the Premiere International Organization serving the educational and transactional support needs of middle market M&A professionals worldwide. The Alliance was formed in 1998 to connect CPAs, attorneys, and other experienced corporate financial investors and advisors, and currently has more than 1,000+ professionals that are among the most highly recognized leaders in the industry—drawing upon proven capital resources combined with a think-tank of transactional expertise to better serve the many business investment needs of middle market companies worldwide.
Alliance Members represent corporate and institutional sellers and buyers of businesses ranging broadly from $5 to $500 million in transaction value. These essential corporate financial advisory and transaction services include investment banking, accounting, finance, valuation, tax, law, and due diligence..
FinTEx is a collaboration between leading players in financial services and technology to expand Chicago’s role as a center of innovation. While Chicago has a storied history in financial services innovation and exciting things are happening now, the city is viewed as being on the periphery.
Chicago is being overshadowed by centers like New York, London and Silicon Valley. Even companies in Chicago tend to look elsewhere for potential partners, not realizing what’s happening next door.
FinTEx Chicago will help companies of all sizes take advantage of the power of adjacency through the formation of a business cluster focused on FinTech and FinServ in Chicago. This will allow participating companies to improve their businesses by becoming productive and more innovative..
DunRobin Ventures is a full service venture capital firm backed by an exclusive angel investor community, where investors are offered the opportunity to invest in the midwest’s best startups. We’re giving investors access to deals that have never been available to them.
If you haven’t already, check us out!. .
Ross Capital, LLC
Ross Capital, LLC is a venture firm that invests in startups and early-stage companies valued under $10 million. The company is focused on individuals and businesses that create markets supported by quantitative qualitative research.
Ross Capital, LLC is based in Chicago, Illinois.. .
Carbon to Clean
Carbon To Clean is an investment community dedicated to renewable energy and sustainable technology investing. We are a group of conscientious global citizens working toward profitable conservation and sustainable growth.
There are no hidden motives. Carbon To Clean was born through the desire to invest ethically and profitably in clean energy and sustainability.
They believe that the best way to positively affect climate change is through shifting the investment consensus toward companies that align with their mission. Their goal is to generate investment opportunities and ideas in sources that are consistent with your moral and ethical views of the world..
Red Rocket Ventures
Red Rocket is a consulting and advisory firm that caters to the startup, digital, and venture community. The company’s service portfolio includes strategic growth consulting, shared executive, business coaching, and financial advice.
Clients can learn from seasoned executives; come out with a credible business plan and actionable insights on how to build, grow, and market their business; engage one of Red Rocket’s team members as an outsourced and shared par-time executive within their team; leverage the company’s Rolodex of venture capital relationships; utilize resources for technology development, search engine optimization, social media marketing, and other high ROI marketing tactics; and connect with numerous business partners. Red Rocket was founded in January 2010 by George Deeb, who is a featured entrepreneur blogger listed under Crain’s Tech 50 in Chicago.
The company is based in Winnetka, Illinois.. .
Barra & Associates
Grant Barra is an insurance and finance professional. He is graduated in Science in Business Administration degree at DeVry University and he is a managing partner at Barra and Associates, an insurance and financial services firm.
Grant Barra recognized as a founding member of GRASH Development LLC and began his career as an separate agency owner at American Family Insurance in Chicago, Illinois.Grant Barra and Associates includes the dynamics of investments and responsibility over time under situations of different levels of uncertainty and risk. Finance can also be defined as the science of money administration.
Finance goals to value resources based on their risk level and their predicted rate of return.. .
VentureDNA offers high-value consulting to early stage companies and entrepreneurs. Our strategy mirrors classic early-stage venture capital and is contrary to today’s trend towards mega funds.
We provide mentor capital and are committed to serving the individual needs of each of our entrepreneurs. We invest early and globally in themes including mobile, cloud/Saas, social, energy, data analytics, and life science.
Our deep knowledge in product development and mobile technologies enables companies to execute with success. Headquartered in Chicago, with offices in Los Angeles, VentureDNA understands brand DNA by helping businesses realize their full growth potential..
Cambridge Capital Management LLC
Cambridge Capital Management, LLC is focused on providing clients with comprehensive investment management, wealth management service and retirement plan consulting firm with offices in O’ Fallon, IL and St. Louis, MO.
Through our wide range of financial planning solutions, we can help you identify and capitalize on your unique financial opportunities.. .
Performant Capital is a Chicago-based investment firm focused on majority and buyout investments in technology-driven companies. They acquire businesses across software, SaaS, technology-enabled services, and data intelligence products and services.
Their investments focus on businesses where their depth of investing, operating expertise, and partner network can make an impact on performance, with a particular focus on B2B.. .
Equity Global Management
Equity Global Management, LLC (“EGM”) is a leading, principal-oriented investment firm headquartered in Chicago, Illinois that invests in the single-tenant net lease, sale-leaseback, and build-to-suit real estate markets. EGM’s funds are professionally managed investment programs designed for institutional and individual investors attracted to the potential income, stability, and capital appreciation available from net leased commercial real estate.
Through our client focus and experienced professionals, we have become a trusted partner for investors, sale-leaseback, and build-to-suit clients across the nation. Our relationship network, capital markets knowledge, underwriting approach, and proven track record originating and structuring net lease investment opportunities has helped make us a leading investor and partner within the sector.
We are solely focused on investments in operationally significant real estate with long-term leases guaranteed by creditworthy tenants that offer the reliable cash flow and security of a fixed income strategy as well as the capital appreciation and upside potential of an equity investment.. .
Syndicated Equities is a private real estate investment firm that was founded in 1986. Since its inception, Syndicated Equities has acquired over $1 billion of institutional-quality and government-leased real estate on behalf of its clients.
They provide investment opportunities to accredited investors, family offices, and institutions that seek attractive cash flow and long-term appreciation from real estate. Since 1986, Syndicated Equities has been dedicated to the performance of its investments and has earned a reputation for integrity throughout the marketplace.
Their personal commitment has resulted in successful, long-standing relationships with their clients, many of whom have invested with them for three decades. Syndicated Equities’ senior management team combines over 100 years of principal-oriented real estate experience, including expertise in acquisitions, finance, development, asset management, leasing, brokerage, institutional advisory services, and 1031 Exchanges.
The depth of this experience is called upon as they evaluate new investment opportunities and manage existing assets within their portfolio. Their reputation for integrity, coupled with our commitment to the performance of their investments, has served our clients well for 25 years and continues to do so today..
Spinal Muscular Atrophy Foundation
SMA (spinal muscular atrophy) is a disease that robs people of physical strength by affecting the motor nerve cells in the spinal cord, taking away the ability to walk, eat, or breathe. It is the number one genetic cause of death for infants.
SMA is caused by a mutation in the survival motor neuron gene 1 (SMN1). In a healthy person, this gene produces a protein that is critical to the function of the nerves that control their muscles.
Without it, those nerve cells cannot properly function and eventually die, leading to debilitating and often fatal muscle weakness. SMA affects approximately 1 in 10,000 babies, and about 1 in every 50 Americans is a genetic carriers.
SMA can affect any race or gender. There are four primary types of SMA—I, II, III, and IV—based on age of onset and highest physical milestone achieved.
Individuals with SMA have difficulty performing the basic functions of life, like breathing and swallowing. However, SMA does not affect a person’s ability to think, learn, and build relationships with others.
Though there is currently no approved treatment for SMA, there’s great reason for hope. They know what causes SMA and what they need to do to develop effective therapies, and There on the verge of major breakthroughs that will strengthen their children’s bodies, extend life, and eventually lead to a cure..
This article was written by David Friedmman from Welp Magazine. The editor for this article was Tess Page. If your company is featured in this article and you want to have amendments made please contact us on: [email protected].
Alternatively you may write to us at: Welp Magazine/Fupping Ltd, First Floor, 61-63 Rochester Pl, London NW1 9JU.