Who We Are

In Ohio, For Ohio

Ohio Innovation Fund (OIF) is a venture capital firm that partners with bold, disruptive founders of high growth startups based in Ohio and throughout the Midwest. OIF partners combine proven Silicon Valley expertise with Midwest grit to help rapidly scale companies that fundamentally transform industries and create new ones. OIF partners treat each of its startups as if it were their own, working in the trenches with entrepreneurs to build companies and maximize their potential, from inception to IPO. OIF is driving the development of Ohio’s entrepreneurial ecosystem, completing significant exits and demonstrating that venture can flourish in the Heartland.

Our Mission



  • Drive competitive venture returns for our Limited Partners
  • Enable our Limited Partners to invest in Ohio, creating the industries and careers of the future with a meaningful global impact
  • Train the first/second generation of entrepreneurs and venture investors in Ohio

Our History

Leveraging his Silicon Valley experience, founder Bill Baumel joined with founding partners The Ohio State University and Ohio University, along with additional anchor partner Kent State University, among other investors, to create the next generation of companies and industries in Ohio. The vision was collaborative in nature, with a singular focus on promoting growth and impact across the region.

The Midwest Transformation

OIF is taking the Midwest’s raw materials—world-class research institutions, leading customers and partners, and a talented, loyal and highly productive employee base—and transforming the region into a competitive advantage, creating the high-growth companies and industries of the future in areas such as med tech, cyber, data science, and advanced manufacturing.

The Midwest was missing some capital, but more so, the region was lacking expertise in scaling companies. We merge Silicon Valley expertise with Midwest grit to assist high potential companies with bold, disruptive founders. With our help, these startup companies have the majority of the Fortune 500 and leading universities as customers, partners such as Facebook, Microsoft, SAP, Citi, Sanofi, Dell, and recognition by Gartner, WSJ, CNN, US Senate, Forrester, Forbes and more.

The OIF Team

Our experienced team includes 25 years of Silicon Valley experience and 13 exits/acquisitions with $20 billion in market value.

Managing Director
  • OIF Vision
  • Growth Strategy
  • Investment Selection
  • Top 100 Venture Capitalist Award
  • Cloud Power Player Award
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  • Startup Strategy
  • Portfolio Management
  • Due Diligence
  • Student Experience Program
  • National Venture Capital Association Rising Star
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Mike Hughes
Venture Advisor
  • Chief Commercial & Revenue Officer at ChargePoint
  • Board Member & Advisor to Aware and DatAnchor
  • Former SVP of Worldwide Sales & Service at Barracuda Networks
  • BS Miami of Ohio, MBA University of Michigan

Matt Benson
Entrepreneur in Residence
  • Financial Analysis
  • Due Diligence
  • Former OIF Intern

Katie Coulter
Director of Marketing and Strategic Communications
  • Digital Marketing
  • Social Media
  • Messaging
  • Former OIF Intern

Faith Voinovich
  • Portfolio Company Management
  • Student Experience Program
  • Community Engagement
  • Former OIF Intern

Our Focus

OIF companies are diverse across industries and geographically across Ohio.


  • Advanced Manufacturing & Materials
  • Med Tech
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Data Science
  • Cyber Security

Uniquely OIF: In The Trenches

While we do offer funding and expertise to early stage companies, OIF’s support doesn’t stop there. We leverage our network of strategic partners, investment partners, universities and global customers to drive top line growth at our portfolio companies. While we’re in the trenches with our startup teams, we provide guidance and support for critical areas such as filling board seats, developing finance strategy, product roadmaps, executive recruitments, new market entry, regulatory approval, sales strategy and merger and acquisition advisory.