— Seattle-based ‘alternative VC’ firm Lighter Capital named Melissa Widner as its new CEO. She takes over from former CEO Thor Culverhouse, who replaced longtime Lighter exec BJ Lackland this past September.
Widner, a board member at Lighter, most recently served as managing partner at the venture capital arm of the National Australia Bank. She was previously a general partner at Seattle-based SeaPoint Ventures and CEO of 7Software, which was acquired by Concur. Widner, based in Sydney, Australia, joined the Lighter board in 2018.
Lighter Capital was co-founded by Andy Sack along with Randall Lucas and Erik Benson of Voyager Capital in 2009. The company helps entrepreneurs raise funding without going the traditional route of venture capital. It has invested more than $200 million in 350-plus startups across the U.S., using an innovative process known as “revenue based financing” (RBF) that lets early-stage startups raise