Cintrifuse Syndicate Fund Invests in Refinery Ventures as Cincinnati Startup Ecosystem Builds Momentum

Cintrifuse Fund Investment Provides Institutional Support for Cincinnati-based Ventures With High-Growth Potential.

The Cintrifuse Syndicate Fund today announced an investment in Cincinnati-based Refinery Ventures. The Cincinnati Business Courier covered the story here. Refinery Ventures is an early-scale venture capital firm focusing on information technology, human capital, digital health, media and marketing. This investment will continue to strengthen the strong relationship between Refinery, Cintrifuse, and the Cincinnati business community.

Cintrifuse has maintained a close relationship with Refinery Ventures since its inception in 2017. As a founding member of Cintrifuse, Tim Schigel recognized an abundance of local technology investment opportunities and established Refinery Ventures.

“This investment demonstrates our commitment not only to engaging founders and investors from outside of the Cincinnati region, but also to support those who are doing great things right here in Cincinnati,” said Cintrifuse CEO Pete Blackshaw. “It’s also urgently important, because there has never been a time when the accelerated development of a tech-based innovation economy has been more important to our region. We’re proud to support Refinery and its growing portfolio of scalable ventures.”

Cintrifuse assesses funds’ potential in three areas when considering an investment decision: (1) performance; (2) ability to ignite corporate innovation for Cintrifuse BigCo partners; and (3) regional engagement. “Refinery is very strong in each of these areas,” added Sarah Anderson, Cintrifuse Fund Manager. “We’ve been watching Refinery and getting to know the portfolio companies from the moment Tim launched Fund I. He has been a transformative venture investor in the region, identifying high-growth startups and driving early performance in his portfolio.”

Refinery launched Fund I in 2017 and has developed one of the strongest emerging portfolios in the Midwest, backing companies including Astronomer, Tealbook, Engage Talent, Fooji, Folio Photonics, and Halo Health. The firm invests $1M to $2M in post-seed or Series A stage companies. Refinery has already experienced a rare success with an early exit only 24 months after the launch of its first fund. Three of nine ventures in the Refinery portfolio are Cincinnati-based or have Cincinnati offices.

About Cintrifuse:

Cintrifuse has one very clear mission: to make Greater Cincinnati the #1 tech startup hub in the Midwest and among the most attractive innovation hubs in the nation. This is a critical mission for our region because winning in the startup space stimulates our economy and invigorates our community. It creates jobs, brings talent, attracts investment, and unlocks our region’s potential to lead innovation in a wide range of industries.

Our model is simple.

  • • We leverage our venture fund to access cutting-edge technologies, generate strong financial returns, and create investment pools for entrepreneurs.
  • • We help the largest corporations in our region discover the innovations — and innovators — that they need to grow and lead their industries.
  • • And we work with entrepreneurs to start up new businesses. Then, we connect them with global industry-leading customers right here in our own backyard.
About Refinery:

Established in 2017 by Tim Schigel, Refinery Ventures is an investment firm focused on disruptive, early-scale companies. Drawing from his extensive experience in founding and serving as CEO of ShareThis, the most recognizable icon on the Internet, to creating the Cintrifuse Syndicate Fund, where he raised over $57 million, Schigel built Refinery Ventures to bridge the gap between the Midwest and the coasts. Refinery Ventures is located in Cincinnati Ohio. For more information, please visit

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Ready for startup support? Join Cintrifuse membership.

Apply Now