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Featured on Jul 20, 2011

Jay Levy

"It's about focus and being cool, calm and collected."


Partner at Zelkova Ventures, a seed stage fund based in NYC. Prior to founding Zelkova, I had a mix of big business and startup experience, the love of entrepreneurism won out!

  • Title: Partner, Zelkova Ventures
  • Age: 30
  • Location: Midtown
  • Contact: @zelkovavc,

You worked at Morgan Stanley before leaving to help start up MPI Professionals. How and when did you decide to leave big business?

Two reasons led me realize that big companies weren't for me.  The first was that I realized that one's success within the company wasn't necessarily related to their abilities at the role, but their abilities to navigate the politics within the system.  I tend to be a person who speaks what comes to their mind which generally doesn't go over well in large companies where you need to follow the established protocols.  Secondly, most large companies have a ton of red tape, which impacts innovation and creativity, this frustrated the heck out of me.

Your bio on also states that you enjoy golfing. What courses in or around NYC do you enjoy playing at?

I have a love hate relationship, I usually love it on holes 3 – 14 and hate it the rest of the time.  Unfortunately I don’t get out as often as id like and typically play at courses on Long Island or Westchester.  I do love the course at Rutgers, which I regret not playing more. 

It's been a hot summer so far here in New York. What are your favorite ways to cool off?

I've had the luck of traveling quite a bit this summer to places not as hot as the city.   I have spent a few weekends out on the west coast and plan on spending a few more there.  I really enjoy the weather and scenery in Napa and have been trying to get out there as much as possible.

Early Stage Investor