Tobi Coker

Tobi Coker

Deal Partner

Working with founders is dynamic and amorphous. You have to take what’s worked in the past and apply it in new contexts. No one has the exact same problem.

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Tobi Coker is a Deal Partner on the Investment team at Felicis. He works with the investment team to source and evaluate investments, conduct diligence, and work with existing portfolio companies. Previously, Tobi was an investor at The Production Board (TPB), a Bay Area-based early-stage venture firm, where he helped found and seed six companies in life sciences and human health. Before TPB, Tobi started his career in the Investment Banking and Capital Markets division at Morgan Stanley, providing coverage to healthcare and biotechnology companies. Currently, he is a Kauffman Fellow, class of 28, and an active member of BLCK VC. Tobi received a B.S. degree in Biology, with a minor in Economics from Georgetown University.


Working with founders is dynamic and amorphous. You have to take what’s worked in the past and apply it in new contexts. No one has the exact same problem.

How has your upbringing shaped your worldview?

I’m Nigerian-American, and my parents are first-generation immigrants. While I grew up in Atlanta, I had a different home life compared to all my friends. My family ate different food and placed a heavy emphasis on education, strict screen-time limits, and the importance of family and community. My dad’s a physician, and my grandfather does sickle cell anemia research in Africa. I remember watching my dad treat patients as a young kid, and he would always encourage me to start asking questions afterward. While my parents might have expected me to become a doctor, lawyer, or engineer, I was drawn to investing to scale the impact of my values. It’s a big reason why I’ve been drawn to how technology affects healthcare and the fundamental nature of work. If tech is more efficient and keeps people healthier, everyone involved will get to spend more time doing what they love with the people they care about. 

What’s one way you’ve worked with founders?

I’ve helped teams stand up their financing function and set financial milestones they must aim for before they set out to raise their next round. This naturally leads to a discussion on what levers they need to pull—from pricing to personnel—to get there. It’s so rewarding to work on a plan with a founding team and execute on it. You get to learn so much along the way, and it gives me a deep appreciation for the work we have the privilege to do. 

What are your go-to book recommendations?

For non-fiction, the most impactful book I’ve read is Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. Embracing stoicism has changed my outlook on life. For fiction, I love the classics—Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov especially. I love how Dostoyevsky intertwines the character development and social narratives while delivering smart satire simultaneously. 

What do you think will be true about the world in 2030?

The low-hanging fruit answer is about AI. AI-assisted software will be part of everyone’s professional life. Just as we Google things every day, we’ll use AI similarly and as often in every sector. On the science side, we’ll be able to treat cancers much more effectively than we do now, potentially with personalized cancer vaccines. We’re gaining so much knowledge about these mutations and how we might prevent them—it’s truly exciting. 

What’s an accomplishment you’re proud of?

When I got on the Forbes 30 Under 30, that definitely blew up the family WhatsApp, but I’m most proud of paying off my student loans without help from anyone. My family emphasized education and earning your way in life, so paying off those loans felt really special. 

Cellino
Dylibso
Maze
Meilisearch
MotherDuck