Read more

Investing in people pioneering the future.

Accelerating growth.
Seeking Early-Stage Alpha Through Institutional Discipline.
Expertise meets Exceptionalism.

Accelerating growth.

Seeking Early-Stage Alpha Through Institutional Discipline.

Expertise meets Exceptionalism.

Investing in people pioneering the future.

ATX Venture Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm investing across North America. Our primary investment focus is into disruptive and emerging B2B software, APIs, marketplaces, frontier tech, and applications. We navigate the transformative SaaS landscape while seeking to mitigate risk.

ATX Venture Partners was launched in 2014 to help fill a need for capital. The US startup landscape continues to evolve across a number of growing cities that have a high number of opportunities at the early stage. ATX was founded from an entrepreneurial network of founders, operators and executives. As successful entrepreneurs ourselves, ATX knows first-hand that success is a team sport and that capital, hustle, strategy, contacts, and experience matter.

Opportunities across venture capital growth ecosystems in the US compare well with other venture capital regions at Seed and Series A rounds. Funds are moving earlier and earlier into Seed to partner with the best and most promising companies, and to drive the highest multiples on their largest exits. ATX gets in early and partners with large, strategic later stage funds for follow-on. We help align resources and strategize on how to reach the next level with expertise, planning, and execution.

Leading your fundraising round is just the beginning. The ATX Platform was built on the belief that the most impactful value we can bring to our portfolio companies comes after the initial capital investment. Our Platform is designed to connect our portfolio companies with the right people, resources, and opportunities at the right time.

Whether it's customer and network introductions, pre-negotiated partnerships and resources, or access to our extensive talent network, our Platform is engineered to help our founders build momentum faster.


ATX diversifies across a number of targeted industries. These are transformative, large markets, where a team has an innovative solution ready to take off. ATX considers market timing and commercial scalability as important criteria. We carefully analyze the company’s business model and competitive landscape for fit. Shifting market dynamics and trends in automation often create overlooked solutions.
ATX is a key player in the startup ecosystem. We value resiliency, intelligence, domain experience, and successful startup expertise. ATX strives to be the founders' fund of choice. Once you partner with us, we are all in on backing you. We know the process of running and expanding businesses from first-hand experience. Tech is in our DNA. Being value-add is our mission.

Investment Terms.

Strong Network Sourcing.


Investment Terms.

ATX typically leads or co-leads the first institutional round, primarily in post revenue companies. Initial investment often ranges from $250,000 to $5M, with the expectation of follow-on investment in the next round as the company expands.

People Centric


Focused Landscape

Growth Markets
Corporate Allies
Venture Partners

Seeking Alpha

Institutional Discipline
Rigor from the Start
Bringing Customers

Drive Performance

Serial Entrepreneurs
Partner Smart
Accelerate Growth

Strong Network Sourcing.

ATX analyzes a high volume of opportunities throughout the year. Many of these deals are off market and proprietary and in the industries where our largest network and knowledge base exists.
Careful consideration and a process driven approach allows for a greater chance of mitigating risk, while still allowing for major upside potential.


SOFTWARE  AI, IoT, Frontier Tech

Logistics & Freight
Real Estate & Construction
Manufacturing & Supply Chain
Identity & Future of Work


Fintech, Banking, & Insurtech
Data Infrastructure
Retail, eCommerce, & Inventory

There's never been a Better time for early-stage startups

Many of our targeted emerging venture cities are experiencing growth at unprecedented levels. Our homebase, Austin, has high level research universities, favorable tax laws for startups, a warm climate, and a reasonable cost of living. Large technology companies including Google, Tesla, Amazon, Apple, Dell, NVIDIA, Samsung, Oracle, IBM, Cisco, PayPal, VMWare, E2open, Q2 Solutions, Meta, and Dropbox all have a major footprint here.
Hybrid and remote workforces added to the trend of many employees and founders joining growing venture capital ecosystems. The maturing of these ecosystems, interconnectedness with the largest startups nationwide, and major tech companies all provide an ongoing source of engineering and managerial talent for early stage startups.


Fortune 500 headquarters
Largest economy in world
Most active angel networks in USA


Of jobs are tech related
Tech companies’ home-base
Startup city per Kaufmann Index


What if you had access to a team of successful entrepreneurs who had deep industry expertise and strategic advice, were passionately committed to your success, and knew your next big partner, customer or hire? That’s our A-Team.
ATX Venture Partners was formerly ATX Seed Ventures.
Austin-based venture capital firm ATX Seed Ventures is rebranding itself as ATX Venture Partners.
Read more
Brad Bentz, Danielle Weiss Allen and Chris Shonk are Partners + Co-Founders of ATX Venture Partners.  Chris and Brad have over 30 years combined experience managing investments and Danielle has over 15 years of Wall Street experience managing institutional funds.
No items found.
Our Venture Partners have extensive first-hand industry experience, are available for support, have a deep knowledge of strategy, and know the major drivers of success for startups.


ATX invests into innovative, world changing, transformative solutions. We find determined, expert teams in large industries.
Competition application with tracking and awards.
Live, online audio recording marketplace.
Transportation rideshare planning and aggregating app.
Mobile bill payment app and API.
Full service marketplace for travelers, renters, and vendors.
Critical notification and monitoring platform for organizations.
Location insights data provider for retail and real estate.
Energy operational efficiency platform for commercial buildings.
RV parks and campgrounds booking marketplace.
Purchase order platform, marketplace, and collaboration tool.
HR and Benefits platform for Small and Medium-sized Businesses.
Virtual autonomous vehicle simulator testing platform.
Geospatial satellite-imagery and signal-data provider.
Autonomous perception systems for inventory visibility using drones.
Sales team gamification solution.
Sales team growth enablement solution.
Knowledge Management Solution for Pharma 4.0 paradigm efficiency.
Electric, vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.
Supply Chain as a Service and platform.
Marketplace and platform for PCB and electronics manufacturing.
Maritime bulk shipping collaboration and visibility solution.
The infrastructure for connecting to payroll accounts.
Business banking app/account/APIs including billing and payment features for independents.
Market-driven, targeted insurance products created and delivered.
Business formation, support, and service platform.
Global identity validation network.
A better way to work in retail.
Virtual CISO and Cybersecurity-as-a-Service platform.
Fleet insurance savings adapted to modern technology.
Bill pay platform that grants access to low-cost credit.
Immersive engagement software.
Plug-and-Play payment and banking tools launched quickly.
Parametric embedded insurance platform.
Your end-to-end solution for returns, refurbishment, and multi-channel recovery.
Extract ML insights from your data without exposing sensitive information.
Alternative Credit Scoring & Assessment for SMB Lenders.
Lending automation and collaboration for real estate.
Banking compliance and automation.
Trusted AI for Healthcare and Life Sciences
AI transaction reconciliations and optimizing enterprise data.
Wealth tech for private banks and RIAs.


Downtown Austin Office in Google Building

Reach out to us through our network.

Investor LoginJobs


Partner + Co-Founder

Chris Shonk started his first business at fourteen, was named the Special Operations Soldier of the Year, and has operated, advised, and invested in consumer service and tech companies for over fifteen years. Chris co-founded Virtus Financial Group (now a $3.5B private equity fund), and served as managing director of the private equity unit. Chris sold his interests in 2006 and co-founded EZ Money Pawn, bringing technology and eCommerce to the secured lending and pawn business. There after he co-founded Sneaky Games and was also their lead investor taking that to a successful exit via IPO. Chris has taken companies he has operated and invested in to exit via acquisition, merger, recapitalization and IPO.

Chris earned his B.A. in Business Administration & Economics from Campbell University and his M.B.A. from the Acton School of Business where he was the first alumnus to start an endowment to offer other deserving entrepreneurs the opportunity to change the world. Chris is on the board of the Boys & Girls Club and focuses on their STEM efforts for underprivileged children. He resides in Austin, Texas with his wife, son, and giant schnauzer Princess Leia.

He has been interviewed by Business Week, Inc. Magazine, Entrepreneur Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, and Forbes.

Knows what it means to take decisive action.

Learned from the world’s most elite Military operators, the fifteen years spent operating, advising, and investing in companies, and the entrepreneurs he serves.

Favorite Superhero is Professor Xavier (Capt. Picard)… and some days Ironman.


Partner + Co-Founder

Brad Bentz graduated with honors from UC Berkeley (1990) and earned an MBA with a focus in entrepreneurship from the Acton School of Business in Austin in 2005. He spent ten years as a field archaeologist working on research projects in Pakistan, Syria, Bulgaria, and the U.S. before establishing a second career as a software developer and team lead. After business school, Brad joined a boutique private equity firm and participated in over a dozen transactions involving more than $72M in equity capital. More recently, he worked at IDC and Boston Consulting Group before joining the investment team at ATX Venture Partners.

Knows what it means to be adaptable and do more with less.

Learned from working across a variety of domains: finance, academia, and IT.

Favorite Superhero is Indiana Jones (AKA James Harvey Gaul).


Partner + Co-Founder

Danielle Allen is Partner + Co-Founder of ATX Venture Partners and head of ATX Global Co-Invest. Danielle graduated from Tulane University and earned an MBA focusing on Finance & Investments from the Zicklin School of Business. She spent 14 years on Wall Street at top hedge funds, private equity firms, and investment banks including JPMorgan, Nomura and Millennium in a wide range of roles from investment analysis to institutional account management. Danielle is a mentor and angel investor, focused primarily on Space and women-led companies. Danielle has 3 amazing sons who are proud Westlake Chaps.

Knows what it means to excel in ludicrous mode.

Learned from Wall Street mentors and the clients she serves.

Favorite Superhero is Captain Jack Sparrow.


Senior Associate

Emerson Miller is an Senior Associate with ATX Venture Partners. He spent over ten years, as a co-owner, managing and expanding an entrepreneurial junior formula-car business in the auto racing industry. During his time in management, Emerson’s team net assets increased by over 50x, while addressing management, operations, investments, data analysis, engineering, recruiting, hiring, and marketing. Sensory data systems for suspension analysis with real world fine tuning, optimizing the aspects of the business and equipment for efficiency related to time, aerodynamic software simulations, and hybrid energy-harvesting system engines were some of the areas that were relevant. Staying on the cutting edge of technology from week-to-week, understanding the business, competition and constant progression, and scaling the company’s assets were some of the factors that contributed to the successful company.

Interests include B2B software, APIs, applications, and marketplaces across a variety of industries including AI/ML, LLM, fintech, supply chain, insurtech, identity, logistics, real estate, construction, data infrastructure, manufacturing, banking, and eCommerce, primarily across the early stages.

Emerson graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a BBA in Finance, where he also spent time working on quantitative trading models, equity analysis, computer science, and coding performance management systems. He joined the Venture Capital industry as a member of the investment office of a 40+ year startup investor and former President and Vice Chairman of Electronic Data Systems, the first IT consulting company. He has experience with data science, managing organizations, performance analysis, competition, scaling companies, and following trends.

Knows what it means to know your competitor and push the limits.

Learned from great mentors he met along the way.

Favorite Superhero is Rocket Racoon.

Spencer Lucas


Spencer Lucas brings over a decade of experience in the accounting field including 6 years at Big 4 Public Accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers and 4 years at a Real Estate investment firm, Amherst Residential, specializing in Fund Accounting. At PricewaterhouseCoopers he led audit engagements for large multi-national companies including Dell Technologies. At Amherst he managed the accounting function for up to 15 joint ventures covering a portfolio of $15.2 billion in assets under management.

He graduated Summa Cum Laude from Oklahoma State University with a Master’s degree in Accounting as well as a B.S. in Accounting and Marketing and became a CPA in 2013. He earned the Oklahoma Society of CPA’s Silver Medal Award for his performance on the CPA exam. He is a top-performing accounting professional that brings first-class support to our operations. He is originally from Oklahoma City and moved to Austin in 2015.

Knows what it means to give your best and leave the rest.

Learned from empathetic, thoughtful, and inspirational mentors throughout his career.

Favorite Superhero is Avicii

Tamra Wilson

Operations & Executive Assistant

Austin native, Tamra Wilson joined our team as an Executive Assistant to ensure the wheels stay on this racecar of a firm!  After relocating to NYC in the 90s to pursue her dreams in the music business, and a long track record working at major record labels including Elektra and RCA, she returned to her beloved hometown to work at Austin City Limits and now has joined the ATX Venture Partners team in 2021.

Knows what it means to adapt to the surroundings and people around you.

Learned from the many people she's met and enabled.

Favorite Superhero is Willie Nelson.


Venture Partner

Dave is a former McKinsey & Co. Partner where he spent 15 years advising senior executives in B2C environments on major strategic and operational issues.  Dave’s experience includes a wide-range of topics including building businesses, driving enterprise-wide sales, cost, and digital transformations, and delivering significant and lasting organizational change.  Most recently, Dave led McKinsey’s Grocery Practice and In-Store Operations and Customer Experience Service Line in the Americas.  Prior to McKinsey, Dave was a Captain in the U.S. Army Field Artillery for 5 years.  Dave has a BS in Operations Research from the United States Military Academy at West Point and an MBA from Harvard Business School.  

Knows what it means to build an eCommerce business from scratch in a hyper-competitive market.

Learned from many senior executives who were intensely passionate about transforming their organizations.

Favorite Superhero is Ironman.


Venture Partner

Tony is the Chief Revenue Officer for YouEarnedIt | High Ground, a Vista Equity company. He is responsible for all Revenue functions including sales and customer success. Prior to YEI | HighGround, he was General Manager of ShipEngine, a Commerce API Platform start-up, operating as a subsidiary of Tony has also served in revenue leadership roles at two of the fastest growing tech companies in Austin over the last 10+ years.

He joined Bazaar voice in 2007 and was part of the leadership team that helped the company grow from early stage through IPO and they were one of the fastest SaaS companies ever to $50M.

Tony then joined Civitas Learning in 2013, and as CRO led the Customer organization across sales, marketing, customer success, delivery, support, and international. Civitas won the ABJ Fast 50 award in 2017 as the fastest growing tech company in Austin from 2014-2016 with 185% annual compound growth.

Tony started his professional career as a college soccer coach at the University of Texas and was an All-American soccer player and team captain at the University of Notre Dame. He also played soccer professionally and competed for the Canadian Olympic soccer team.

Serving the community is also one of Tony's most important values and he has served on several community leadership boards over the years including The Trail Foundation, The Long Center for the performing Arts, and the Austin Sports Commission. He is also currently a mentor for Techstars Austin.

Knows what it means to do some “quantum tunneling.”

Learned from elite athletics the importance of aggregated marginal gains.

Favorite Superhero is Flash (not to be confused with Flash Gordon).


Venture Partner

Michael is currently CEO and Founder of MRFH, LLC, a boutique consulting and investment firm focused on the e-commerce, travel and real estate sectors. Some current clients include the MailChimp, Eleven Experience, Oak Hill Capital Partners, Flyr Labs, Sips By (an Austin company), and Highline Wellness just to name a few.

Prior to Michael's control, he served as CEO for Rovia, a membership based travel company in Plano TX, and Car Trawler out of Dublin Ireland. Successful exits led him to specialize in product development, go to market strategy, capital raises and scaling operations. He occupies several board seats, in addition to developing and owning significant real estate projects.

Michael began his career as a trainee with Starwood hotels before progressing to Expedia Inc. where he spent almost a decade as a VP operating multiple global business units. At Expedia he managed the global luxury travel brand (Classic Vacations), global car rentals, the white label business (now Expedia Partner Solutions) and multiple other business units. He also served on the Strategic Accounts (supplier management) and Executive Team during his tenure.

Knows what it means to strike the right balance between raising/ investing capital vs. heads down execution.

Learned from bad and good decisions, big business to start-ups, all the fantastic employees, peers, superiors and mentors I am/was lucky enough to work with over my entire career.

Favorite Superhero my mentor Robert Baearsch.


Venture Partner

Jeff Gray is currently Chief Information Officer/Advisor at Cicer One Technologies and is responsible for IT, Development, and Strategy. He is also Technology Director for AT&T Cybersecurity.

Mr. Gray began his IT career in Austin, Texas, building up numerous companies and strengthening their IT infrastructure and security. Many of these companies, due to tremendous growth, have gone on to success and mergers with major corporations.

Jeff has over twenty years’ experience setting IT vision, strategy, architecture and direction. He served as Vice President, IT at Xplore Technologies (acquired by Zebra Technologies), Global Head of IT at Covi Technologies (acquired by GE Security), Vice President, IT at Hyperformix (acquired by Computer Associates), Senior Director, IT at Actian (acquired Par Accel, Ingres, Pervasive Software, Versant), and Global Head of IT at AlienVault (acquired by AT&T).

Jeff also co-founded Coro Health, a company that patented a cutting-edge music delivery system for long term care and memory care patients.

Along with his double major in Business Management and Marketing from Texas State University, Mr. Gray’s educational background includes a master’s degree in Information Security from Capella University, along with industry certifications, including CISSP, CEH, and Cisco Cybersecurity Specialist.

Jeff served on the Board of Directors for Candlelight Ranch for a decade, where he helped provide a unique outdoor environment for special needs and at-risk children. While there, Jeff led a successful fundraiser for $50,000 that went toward a wheelchair accessible tree house (Reese’s TreeHouse). Jeff also served the March of Dimes for four years.

Jeff is originally from Toronto, Canada, and since the late 1990s has called Austin, Texas home.

Knows what it means to give back and show gratitude for the opportunities that have been
presented to him and strives to make a positive impact on people’s lives every day.

Learned from a whole host of industry veterans in the IT space, who taught clear direction and
planning that results in coherent, coordinated actions.

Favorite Superhero is Deadpool because it’s all about the personality… and who doesn’t love the
“merc with the mouth?”


Venture Partner

Mike has more than 25 years of technology and executive talent acquisition experience and has co-founded three recruiting-focused startups.  He’s currently the President of Gold Executive Services where he helps companies create and implement highly efficient recruiting strategies to build successful teams. He has held multiple positions as an executive and corporate recruiter, staffing manager and entrepreneur. He co-founded StartupStaffing, Austin’s first Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) company for newly funded startup companies, Career Communities, a technical employment portal and Velocity, an applicant tracking system.

Mike is passionate about talent acquisition and helping entrepreneurs bring their ideas to fruition by building amazing teams around them.

He lives in Volente, just outside Austin with his wife of 23 years and two sons where he enjoys spending time with his family and friends.

Knows what it means to persevere.

Learned from my mistakes as well as successes, and the many crazy-smart people I’ve had the opportunity to work with.

Favorite Superhero is Bruce Lee or Yoda, depending on the day.


Venture Partner

Kevin Fiur is President and Chief Legal Officer of iFLY, the global innovation and entertainment company that is bringing the dream of flight to humans across the planet. Right now Kevin is responsible for iFLYs B2B business and all of iFLY’s legal operations. The division he heads includes franchising and licensing of its super cool tech as well as design , engineering and real estate development.  He is a member of iFLY’s Executive Leadership Team and serves as Secretary to the Board of Directors.

Mr. Fiur started his first business in high school (Backbusters), then was a successful lawyer at Baker Botts before making the transition to entertainment law and Hollywood and then eventually landing as CEO of an NYSE company by age 35. He was valedictorian of the first Acton School of Business class and spent a decade as a successful entrepreneur in the tech space before joining iFLY in 2015.

In addition to his MBA from the Acton School of Business in Austin, Texas, Mr. Fiur’s education includes a BA degree in the Plan II Honors Program from the University of Texas at Austin, and a JD (Order of the Coif) from the University of Texas School of Law. He has served on the boards of the University of Texas College of Natural Sciences, the Houston Technology Center, Child Advocates of Texas, the Aspiring Youth Program and Technology Tree Group, Inc., as well as Seitel, Inc. and Quantum Interface LLC. Kevin is married and lives with his wife and four children in Austin, Texas.

Knows what it means to make payroll, benefit equally from the failures and successes, and stay frosty when others are sweating.

Learned from titans of law and industry and a deep resume of global experiences.

Favorite Superhero is Peter Quill aka Star Lord (it’s the Walkman and the tunes).


Venture Partner

David is a technologist and entrepreneur with over 25 years of experience productizing enterprise-level solutions. David is currently Co-Founder & CEO of Slingshot Aerospace, which provides the next wave of earth and space observation AI that allows enterprise customers to uncover valuable insights so that they can increase profitability and reduce risk.

As an entrepreneur and startup enthusiast, he has been responsible for guiding several businesses to product or platform marketability, including several venture backed companies with a couple of successful exits and more in progress. David is constantly evaluating new technologies and industries to identify where emerging technology can be applied to solve real world problems – with a specialty in architecting cloud driven applications, data platforms, and analytics solutions.

He has served as CEO for startups and as an executive in a technology, product and analytics capacity for many others. He is an LP in ATX Venture Partners and acts in an advisory capacity for early and mid-stage startups. David has served on a number of non-profit Boards in Austin including Heart House Austin and the nationally renowned Star of Texas Fair and Rodeo.

David lives in Austin, TX and has two daughters. Outside of family time and working on building better startups, David likes to read, play games of all types and travel whenever the opportunity arises.

Knows what it means to be vulnerable and lead with transparency, which enables and empowers my peers, while still driving successful product execution and company vision.

Learned from my father, grandfather, professionals I have worked with and reading good, old fashioned books.

Favorite Superhero is Captain America, he’s a leader, patriot, and all around badass.. with or without the shield!


Venture Partner

Peter Kirby is long-time entrepreneur and early pioneer in the blockchain space. He co-founded a Bitcoin hardware company in 2013 and a blockchain technology company in 2014. Peter also executed one of the earliest ICOs in 2015 as CEO of Factom, Inc. He has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Economist, Financial Times, and Forbes. He has been a featured speaker at The World Bank, Money 20/20, The US State Department, and The US Department of Homeland Security. Peter has a BS in Biochemistry from Lehigh University, an MBA from the Acton School of Business AND is a certified laughter yoga instructor!

Knows what it means to take an industry from Zero to One.

Learned from blowing up multiple companies in the 2008 financial collapse.

Favorite Superhero is Deadpool.