“Maniv’s Expansive Growth: Equipped with a New $140M Fund, the VC Firm Shows No Bounds”

Venture firm Maniv has grown by nearly every measure since it launched eight years ago in Israel — from its investor base and 40-startup portfolio to its geographic focus, footprint and fund size. There are, however, some notable evolutions that hint at the Maniv’s investment strategy with its third and latest fund known as Maniv III, TechCrunch has exclusively learned. Maniv, once firmly focused on Israeli startups, continues to expand its geographic focus and now has active portfolio companies in nine countries. The VC firm has also largely stopped using the once trendy umbrella term “mobility,” (often leaving it out of its original name Maniv Mobility) and has opted instead to talk about deep tech, decarbonization and digitization of the transportation sector. “I thought the trajectory of that term (mobility) was going to continue to clarify overtime, but in fact, I think the opposite has happened for a bunch of reasons,” Granoff explained, adding that while the term mobility might not be used as often, it is still very much central to its mission.

Venture firm Maniv has undergone significant growth over the past eight years since its establishment in Israel. From its investor base and portfolio of 40 startups to its focus on specific industries and geographic expansion, Maniv has made leaps and strides in the world of venture capital.

But even with a freshly closed $140 million fund in its coffers and a new office in New York City, founder Michael Granoff says Maniv is still just a seed stage fund at heart, “that occasionally breaks its own rules.”

When Maniv first launched in 2016, its investment strategy was centered around early-stage companies in the intersection of mobility, transportation, and energy. While this remains the focus, there have been notable developments in the firm’s approach with its latest fund, Maniv III, TechCrunch has exclusively learned.

Previously, Maniv’s primary focus was on Israeli startups. However, the firm has continued to expand its geographic reach and now has active portfolio companies in nine countries.

“So we will certainly keep our eyes on the local market here,” Granoff stated. “But we’ll go for the best deals and learn everything we can from the deal flow that comes in a very distributed way from around the world.”

Aside from its widening search for promising companies, Maniv has also shifted away from the once-popular term “mobility.” The umbrella term, which was even included in the firm’s original name, has been replaced with a focus on “deep tech, decarbonization, and digitization of the transportation sector,” according to Granoff.

Nate Jaret, general partner at Maniv, explains that the $140 million fund reflects new goals, including a more diverse group of investors and the inclusion of financial investors who see the potential for high returns in the decarbonization and digitization of all forms of transportation, even air and sea travel.

  1. Maniv’s investor base is now more diverse, including not only automakers but also strategic investors in various industries related to transportation and mobility such as leasing, fintech, logistics, vehicle maintenance, energy, fleet management, and repair.
  2. These new investors, including BNP Paribas Personal Finance, Shell Ventures, and Enterprise Mobility, showcase the range of industries impacted by the changes in transportation and the growing importance of decarbonization and digitization.
  3. The Maniv III fund also includes return investors Valeo and Jaguar-Land Rover venture arm InMotion Ventures, as well as new participants such as Toyota Motor Corp.’s Woven Capital, vehicle leasing company Arval, transportation infrastructure giant Ferrovial, industrial manufacturing firm ITT Inc., fleet payments business WEX, and an unnamed European insurance company.

Jaret also notes that Maniv’s investment strategy is evolving. With nearly $320 million in assets under management, the firm has previously led investments in companies such as AI edge computation chip startup Hailo in Tel Aviv, EV ridehail and charging network Revel in New York City, and intercity busing platform Kolors in Mexico City.

However, with its newest fund, Maniv is expanding into the broader climate tech world, specifically where it overlaps with transportation. The firm has made four investments to date, including Chicago-based startup Celadyne, which is working to extend the lifespan and efficiency of proton-exchange membranes to make green hydrogen production financially viable.

The fund has also invested in Israeli startup Neologic, which has developed a proprietary chip design for improved performance and power in data centers and automotive, e-motorcycle battery-swapping startup Vammo based in Brazil, and San Francisco-based Circular, which is promoting the use of post-consumer recycled plastic in manufacturing by addressing information and testing gaps.

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Max Chen

Max Chen is an AI expert and journalist with a focus on the ethical and societal implications of emerging technologies. He has a background in computer science and is known for his clear and concise writing on complex technical topics. He has also written extensively on the potential risks and benefits of AI, and is a frequent speaker on the subject at industry conferences and events.

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