First Round Capital this morning announced that Hayley Barna, co-founder and former co-CEO of beauty commerce service BirchBox, is joining the early-stage investment firm as a venture partner.
This is the New York-based role previously held by SinglePlatform founder Wiley Cerilli (who just announced a new startup called Good Uncle), with Barna saying that she’s spend most of her time on new investment activity, while also working with select First Round portfolio companies on operational issues.
As you might recall, Barna stepped down from the co-CEO role at Birchbox last summer. She says that she did not have any immediate job plans after Birchbox, and focused for a few months on advising other startups and making angel investments. The opportunity with First Round ― an original Birchbox investor ― emerged later.
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“It’s a transitional time for the market, but I’m not concerned about finding good startups, particularly in New York,” Barna explains. “To quote [First Round partner] Josh Kopelman… talent isn’t cyclical.”
Barna plans to remain a director on the Birchbox board, as does First Round partner Phin Barnes. It is unclear if one of them (most likely Barnes) would step down when Birchbox eventually secures a new round of financing. The company had planned to raise in late 2015, but it didn’t ultimately come together. Since then it has cut costs by laying off around 15% of its staff, even though a source familiar with the company says that top-line revenue grew by more than 100% between 2014 and 2015.
Barna declined to comment about Birchbox’s funding plans or financials.