“A16z Elevates Jennifer Li to Co-Lead $1.25B Infrastructure Fund Development”

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Powerhouse venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz is promoting Jennifer Li to general partner after six years at the firm. She’s being tapped to help invest the new $1.25 billion Infrastructure fund managed by longtime a16z general partner Martin Casado. The Infrastructure fund is part of the fresh $7.2 billion that the Silicon Valley VC giant just raised. Li has been an investing partner on the Infrastructure team for a while, which means she was already writing checks and taking board seats. Plus she’s one of only four GPs on the Infrastructure team.

Khosla and Founders Fund Co-Lead $150 Million Boost for Ramp, Valuing Company at $7.65B

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Spend management startup Ramp has raised another $150 million at a post-money valuation of $7.65 billion, the company confirmed to TechCrunch today. New investor Khosla Ventures and existing backer Founders Fund co-led the raise, which also included participation from new backers Sequoia Capital, Greylock and 8VC. Other existing investors Thrive Capital, General Catalyst, Sands Capital, D1 Capital, Lux Capital, Iconiq Capital, Definition Capital, Contrary Capital also put money into the latest round. Apparently, there were no hard feelings on the part of Founders Fund, which still participated in the financing, even without Rabois. (It’s worth noting that Rabois originally represented Founders Fund and has sat on Ramp’s board since 2019.)

Evolution Equity Partners Secures $1.1 Billion for Cutting-Edge Cybersecurity and AI Fund

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It’s against this backdrop that Evolution Equity Partners, a growth capital investment firm based in NYC, on Tuesday launched a $1.1 billion cybersecurity and AI fund, the third such fund in Evolution’s history. The fund, called Evolution Technology Fund III, was oversubscribed, with participation from existing and new endowments, sovereign investors, insurance companies, foundations, fund of funds, family offices and angels. “The Evolution Technology Fund III has already backed fifteen leading cybersecurity companies, initiating its investment period over 12 months ago,” Seewald said. “We believe that provides private markets investors with diversified exposure to cybersecurity opportunities.”ESG will be another factor, according to Seewald. Evolution’s 30-person teams manages around $2 billion in assets and has backed 60 companies to date; its previous fund was $400 million.

“New Climate Fund: $200M Raised by Bay Bridge Ventures, According to Filings”

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Climate investor Bay Bridge Ventures is raising a new $200 million fund, TechCrunch has exclusively learned. Bay Bridge filed paperwork Monday for the new climate fund with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. And Congruent Ventures raised a $275 million fund in 2023, turning down $325 million in additional LP interest. Bay Bridge Ventures is new, having been founded in 2022 with a focus on ESG more broadly and sustainability in particular. Still, that doesn’t mean Bay Bridge lacks experience.

Maven Ventures Secures $60M for Fund IV, Proving Continued Enthusiasm for Consumer Tech Investing

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When prolific venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz and Lerer Hippeau announced in early 2024 they were pivoting away from consumer tech, it sparked a social media debate about whether there are still opportunities. Jumping in, Maven will be there helping to build the next game-changing health AI company or robotics AI consumer business, he said. Scheinman started the firm in 2013 and brought in Deshpande soon after to focus on consumer AI and personalized medicine. They brought in investment partner Robert Ravanshenas in 2015, and again in 2020 after a stint in a startup operating role, to focus on fintech, longevity and consumer AI. Together the trio remains committed to seeding similar consumer tech trends, including applications of AI, personalized healthcare, climate and sustainability, family technology and fintech.

“Climate Investing as a Critical Battle: SOSV Founder Announces Successful $306M Fund Closure”

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For the firm that calls itself “the first check in deep tech,” the last check for SOSV’s latest $306 million fund took a bit longer than founder Sean O’Sullivan would have liked. “We’re concentrating and double doubling down on deep tech,” O’Sullivan said. We’re doing a fewer number of companies, more like 80 deep tech companies per year. O’Sullivan said that SOSV intends to invest about 70% of the funds in climate tech companies, 25% in health tech, and the remaining 5% will be reserved for opportunistic investments. “We have a special place to serve because we do deep tech, because we do get into the biology, we do get into the chemistry, the physics and the electronics.

Canva helps Airtree Ventures maintain majority stake as first fund yields promising returns

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Airtree Ventures already returned its first fund thanks to Canva while maintaining the majority of its stakeVenture secondaries has exploded over the last couple of years. While some firms have used the increase in activity to build up their positions in their most promising portfolio companies, Airtree Ventures is taking advantage of the momentum a little differently. So in 2021 Airtree started seeking out alternative ways to get liquidity for some of their earliest stakes, Blair said. Airtree got a 1.4x return on Fund I from this transaction alone and was able to maintain the majority of their original stake. They aren’t wrong, and Blair acknowledges that when a company does eventually exit, Airtree makes less money off of it because of this strategy.

“Opportunities Abound: Cendana and Kline Hill Secure $105M to Acquire Stakes in Seed VC Funds from LPs Seeking to Sell”

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Cendana, Kline Hill have a fresh $105M to buy stakes in seed VC funds from LPs looking to sellIf you ask investors to name the biggest challenge for venture capital today, you’ll likely get a near-unanimous answer: lack of liquidity. Cash-hungry venture investors, whether VCs themselves or their limited partners are increasingly looking to sell their illiquid positions to secondary buyers. “We simply passed the hat around to our existing LPS at Kline Hill and Cendana,” said Kim. It then passes these opportunities to Kline Hill, which values, underwrites and negotiates the transaction price. Traditional secondary investors, such as Lexington Partners and Blackstone, recently raised their largest secondary funds ever.

A Unique $60 Million Investment Fund and Increased Acquisitions within Startup Community

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Ah, spring has sprung here in the Northeast United States, and it’s not only flowers that are blooming. Today on Equity’s startup-focused Wednesday show, we dug into the Multiverse-Searchlight deal, which reminded us of the Wonderschool-Early Day transaction that we covered on the show a few weeks ago. Startup Land is feeling quite busy and high-dollar again, and that’s a lot of fun! We wrapped up the show with a cool discussion of this new venture capital fund that’s targeting growth-rounds in Africa. Equity is TechCrunch’s flagship podcast and posts every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and you can subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

“Verod-Kepple’s Pan-African Venture Capital Fund Secures $60M in Inaugural Close”

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Verod-Kepple Africa Ventures (VKAV) plans to back up to 21 growth-stage companies across the continent after closing its first fund at $60 million. The pan-African VC hit the milestone following fresh backing from Nigeria’s SCM Capital formerly Sterling Capital Markets Limited, and the only non-Japanese investor. Verod-Kepple is the latest African VC to get capitalized, amid an ongoing investment downturn, allowing it to provide much-needed capital to series A and B startups even as local capital pools for growth-stage companies remain limited. We think there’s still a need for more growth stage capital with locally based investors,” she said. How VKAV makes investmentsThe VKAV fund backs startups that are building infrastructure for the digital economy, solving inefficiencies encountered by businesses, and market creators for the emerging consumer population.