We are experienced founders backing the next generation of founders.

Founders Funding Founders

A founder’s journey to success is grueling and exhilarating. The early days are an electric juggling act. You need everything – an MVP, product market fit, a v1 product, customers, revenue, a team, a website, legal docs, an accounting system, FUNDING…and so on.


And it’s hard. Hard to prioritize. Hard to know what to focus on next. Hard to get anyone to talk with you about the real work ahead.


We understand. We’ve been through the furnace and out the other side. We started as founders, scaled up as operators, and exited. Multiple times. Over many years. We have loads of collective scar tissue. We know where the potholes are because we have stepped in them before. And now we have pattern recognition and know the formula it takes to go the distance.


Along the way, we have built a network of people to lean on – a community of supporters, investors, and other successful founders that have been there and done that. They are our village and the team we trust.

And they are with us to back your Founderville journey.

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Our Approach

Our approach is hyper-local, hands-on, and face-to-face. We look for leaders and innovators who are coachable and ready to lean into the grind. We like to get face-to-face because we believe there is understanding and creativity that sparks when we breathe the same air. We want to invest energy in connecting you with our village - a great network of like-minded, experienced founders and allies. We’re not Angels, although we have invested that way. We’re not an Accelerator, although we started one for our local Entrepreneurial Support Organization (NEXT), and we will plug you in there. We’re not a structured venture studio, although we ideate and execute alongside you.

What are we then? We are backers.

We help you discover product market fit. We help you get the right people on the bus in the right seats. We help you figure out where to take the bus. We help you to focus on the hard stuff by making the easy stuff like accounting, legal, and office space dirt simple. And we help you visualize and understand capital funding as a strategy. This is the difference between BACKING a founder vs. simply funding a venture. Funding is a spectator activity. Backing is a team sport.

We write $300k to $500k checks on rounds in the $700k to $1m range. We usually lead the first round. We reserve cash to follow on later rounds.

We believe deeply in those we back. We want you and your team to live here in Founderville with us so we can make sparks fly together.

Let us know if this sounds like a good fit.

Founderville - Scott Wanner Stritt Reception
DS - Jami Accelerator
Founderville - Shay Bo Kent Reception

Please note that Founderville Fund I only invests in B2B SaaS tied to Greenville, SC. Stay tuned for future funds that will expand outside Greenville, SC.

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Shaler (Shay) P. Houser

Shay is a graduate of the Citadel and a veteran of the technology industry. Shay has served as a senior executive with various organizations and is experienced on the foundational side of the industry as an entrepreneur and investor. Shay has co-founded and led five technology businesses as CEO. Seruus Ventures (1996), Nuvox Communications (1997), UCI Communications (2003), Green Cloud Technologies (2011), and Youturn Health (2018). 

Based on Shay’s experience raising hundreds of millions of public and private debt, filing for an IPO, and closing over 20 M&A transactions, he is experienced in developing emerging technology companies to achieve a significant return on investment.