Founder and Partner at Big Rock Partners
Mike Harden is an experienced venture capitalist and entrepreneur with more than 20 years in the investment industry. He is founder and partner at Big Rock Partners, LLC, a San Francisco-based family office dedicated to serving the cannabis, hospitality and wellness communities in California and beyond. Big Rock invests, consults, and supports businesses, non-profits, and individuals who are driving positive change in these industries.
Big Rock has invested in both leading and up-and-coming hospitality and cannabis businesses, including Henry’s Original, Vertosa, Kikoko Tea, Tacolicious, Souvla, ChefsFeed, and Garden Society to name a few.
He has served on numerous boards from hospitality and cannabis to tech and biotech. He’s spoken at major financial conferences such as Milken Institute's Global Conference, and has keynoted at cannabis conferences such as New West Summit.
Prior to shifting his focus to Big Rock full time in 2020, Harden was founder and partner at ARTIS Ventures, a venture capital company specializing in financing early-to late-stage investments in dynamic companies. ARTIS Ventures is renowned for being an early investor in YouTube, which went on to be bought by Google for $1.65 billion. Other notable successes the firm has backed include Palantir Technologies, Versa Networks, Cohesity, Modern Meadow, and Locus Biosciences. As of November 2016, the acquisition of Stemcentrx by AbbVie for more than $8 billion was the largest private acquisition in the history of healthcare venture capital.
Before entering venture capital, Harden was with CSFB Technology Group where he was one of the first sell-side analysts covering the mobile internet and device industry. He also graduated from the Bell Labs Leadership Development Program working to develop 3G wireless technologies in EMEA and APAC.
Harden is also active with The Mike and Shauna Harden Foundation, which has supported and worked closely with AmFar, The Last Prisoner Project, The Cashmere Foundation, and Safe & Sound. He holds personal investments in over 50 local Bay Area hospitality and wellness businesses, and currently serves as an advisor to Tacolicious restaurants.