Will Ward, the founder of Fourward Inc., a music and production house, has launched Fourward Ventures, a $50 million venture capital fund.
The Beverly Hills-based fund has successfully closed half of its amount and is currently on track to close the balance by mid-September.
It is an early growth-stage company investing in health and wellness, sustainability and consumer packaged goods companies.
“With my amazing team including Michael Mizrahi and Mallory Shickora, I am proud to say we have so far vetted 407 companies and have invested in nine of them, all of which have shown significant growth since our investment,” Ward said.
Among the companies that Fourward has invested in are Audio Up, a podcast and audio-based content production house in Brentwood; Goodles, a Santa Cruz-based macaroni and cheese company co-founded by “Wonder Woman” actress Gal Gadot; Partake, a New York City-based startup creating an allergen-free food brand targeting the needs of children and adults; Samsara, a Sydney, Australia-based company that has developed a biocatalyst technology that can fully break down any type of plastic; and New York-based Starface, a company that developed a pimple patch for teenagers and young adults.
Mizrahi’s career spans more than a dozen years advising and working with technology and media companies in finance and strategy, operations and business development positions. He began his career as an investment banker and advised on more than $1 billion in transactions across tech and media. Prior to joining Ward at Fourward, he was a principal at Wavemaker Partners, a Santa Monica-based early-stage VC fund.
Shickora comes to the venture capital firm from Century City-based Creative Artists Agency, where she she managed celebrity partnerships, music and sports sponsorships and social impact marketing for brands including AT&T, Aflac and EA Sports.
By utilizing its team of experts in investing, operations, and entertainment strategy, Fourward Ventures identifies both celebrity and non-celebrity businesses and helps to scale cutting edge early-stage brands, the company said.
Fourward Ventures has pledged 10% of its profits to three different charities: one that prepares young adults in underserved communities to succeed in the workforce, one that supports women launching their own businesses, and one that provides micro loans to fuel entrepreneurship around the world.
At Fourward Ventures, Ward has combined his strategic approach to management with his extensive network in finance and tech to build multi-million-dollar businesses around celebrities.
Ward also co-founded Centr, “Thor” actor Chris Hemsworth’s health and wellness fitness app, which was recently acquired by HighPost Capital; ready-to-drink craft cocktails with Aisha Tyler; and Z. Alexander Brown, a wine brand built around the Zac Brown Band.