Martin Babinec

Martin Babinec

Managing Director

I founded TriNet in 1988, serving as the CEO for the company’s first 20 years and Chairman till 2010. TriNet helps entrepreneurs realize their ambition by our handling human resources, benefits, payroll, employer compliance, workers comp and a variety of strategic human capital management functions to attract and retain top talent.

Today we are about 2,000 team members strong and are the largest independent cloud-based HR service provider in the U.S. We service 16,000+ clients and generate revenues of about $3 billion a year.

While I remain active as a large shareholder and Director at TriNet, in addition to startup investing I spend time building things that help connect entrepreneurs to resources who can help them.

My related activities are profiled in more detail on my personal site.

Michael Sciotti


Michael joined UpVentures in 2017 and was promoted to Partner at the end of 2020.

He is responsible for evaluating new investment opportunities, supporting portfolio companies, fund admin, and growing our network of relationships through the UpVentures Investor Network.

Michael is also CFO/COO of Rock City Centre Holdings, a collective of for-profit and nonprofit organizations having an affiliation with the Babinec Family Trust.

Prior to joining UpVentures, Michael graduated with a MS in Finance from the Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester. Michael also holds a BA in Economics and Management from Wells College.

Mike Krupit

Venture Partner

Mike Krupit is the veteran of eight diverse startups, on both the east and west coast, and has been a fixture in the booms and busts of the last three decades of tech. He is the founder and lead coach for Trajectify, turning Founders into CEOs, guiding entrepreneurs of young companies and small businesses to help them to cross the chasm, find and develop opportunities and organizations, and grow.

His story is one of a young software geek that grew from CTO to COO to CEO. He honed his management skills and business prowess with young companies as they became successful exits and mature businesses, including three IPOs, a bunch of mergers and acquisitions, and a turn-around. Mike spent a decade in Silicon Valley where he helped build Verity (a pioneer in search engines, IPO and sold to Autonomy/HP) and KnowledgeSet (one of the first companies to put data on a CD). In the Northeast, he developed the e-commerce technology and operations at online music pioneer, CDNOW, was part of taking the company public, later becoming CDNOW’s CEO. Mike also worked with Infonautics (a pioneer in online information services) and Knite, a spin-out from Princeton University to commercialize an innovation to the spark plug.

Sumit Agarwal

Venture Associate

Sumit has spent more than a dozen years working with many of America’s largest brands to create scalable solutions, primarily built around SAS offerings. He performed this in team leader and solutions consulting roles with start-ups, big tech, conglomerates, and start-ups that got acquired into big tech. At UpVentures he brings deep technical detail to vetting product/market fit and comparisons against existing available technologies.

Most recently serving as VP of Solutions Strategy at mobile engagement and analytics provider, Swrve, Sumit has previously worked at Oracle, Salesforce, WPP, and others. He holds an MFA in Digital Arts | New Media from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he was the founding Director of Technology for SCTV, the university’s campus TV station.

Why we are Startup Investors

We’ve been working alongside emerging tech companies since starting TriNet 25+ years ago. Seen a ton of change in the startup space over that time. Not only evolving technology and markets, but also business practices around how high performing teams build and adapt, as well as how smart investors nurture fledgling companies to success.

It’s only been more recently that we began putting some of what we’ve learned to work in being investors. Early-stage investing carries lots of risks – its a long and tortuous road for a private company to succeed at returning money to shareholders.

So as we work through the steps of helping our portfolio companies build value, we find some of the financial risk offset by positives like:

  • keeping us current with what’s going on in the tech world and relevant to our children!
  • meeting and hanging out with interesting people, especially startup entrepreneurs and like-minded investors
  • building a network of resources that we frequently draw upon to help startups
  • and the intrinsic satisfaction that comes with playing a meaningful role in helping an entrepreneur create something from nothing, create jobs that support families, serve customers and impact the community through all the things a company can do.

Are you interested in being a startup investor?

We welcome hearing from others who are interested in becoming angel and seed-stage investors. Depending on your location and interests, we may be able to put you in touch with people or organizations that might be suitable resources to check out. You might also subscribe to Martin Babinec’s blog or Twitter feed as he posts investor-related content too.