CB Insights released a new report about venture capital financing for the first quarter of 2013, and after a bleak 2012, things are looking up for New York startups. The state beat out Massachusetts for the second time in the last two years on “overall number of deals and funding” (not exclusive to tech companies), placing just behind California. Read More
News flash: it is not 1999 anymore, and it appears that corporate venture capitalists have adjusted accordingly. CB Insights released its Q1 Corporate Venture Capital Report yesterday, revealing that CVCs participated in just 84 deals totaling $1.09 billion, a record low for the past five quarters.
But while overall CVC funding is down 20 percent, funding for the Internet sector is up 30 percent, with CVC deals in that sector increasing for the third straight quarter. Read More
Silicon Valley venture capitalists may have chosen the horse they’re betting on in the evite game. This morning, VentureWire reported that New York-based Paperless Post* raised $6 million in “first-round funding,” from RRE Ventures, Ron Conway’s SV Angel, and Tim Draper–making the startup much-better funded than competitors like Punchbowl, which according to FormDs.com raised $1.25 million last December.
Paperless Post was launched here in 2009 by 20-something siblings James and Alexa Hirschfeld. TechCrunch calls it the “anti-Evite” for offering the ability to create sleeker, design-centric personalized invitations. Evite, which was launched in 1998, still has a chunky, clip-art feel to it, whereas Paperless Post’s offerings seem to fit better in these modern times. There’s even an option that seems ready-made for Brooklyn’s nostalgic new artisan-class. Read More
Signpost, the Startup That Promises to Drive Customers to Small Businesses, Raises $3.75 M. From Spark Capital
Say you’re a small business trying to figure out whether a deal with Groupon or ad on Yelp will bring customers to your door. That already-tricky marketing decision gets more complicated when you factor in fragmentation among daily deals sites and all the other publishers that could potentially host your ad. If you wanted, however, Read More
The data service whizzes at CB Insights released a new report today on venture capital financing in the first quarter of 2012. On first glance, the news doesn’t look great for New York. The data shows that funding in New York dropped to a five-quarter low. “But the state’s deal activity stayed strong so we don’t think the decline is a problem (yet),” says the report.
Eep, was the parenthetical really necessary? Not likely. ”NY remains a hub for early stage investment with 30% of deals in the seed stage and another 30%+ in the Series A stage,” the firm added, assuaging fears. Read More
This guest post was written by David Teten, Koen Bremer, Gyorgy Buslig, and Adham Hussein. David is a Partner with ff Venture Capital and Founder and Chairman of Harvard Business School Alumni Angels of Greater New York. Koen, Gyorgy, and Adham are all Columbia Business School MBA 2012 students and former consultants with McKinsey and BCG.
Even the best VCs and entrepreneurs have a painfully high failure rate. Lowering that failure rate would be highly impactful on venture capitalist returns, if we could figure out how to do it. In addition, in light of increasing competition in the startup funding space, a methodology for helping portfolio companies consistently is a strong competitive advantage. Read More
Voxy, the New York City-based language learning startup that launched at TechCrunch Disrupt in 2010, is in the process of raising a Series A-2 round of equity financing. In a Form D filed with the SEC today, the startup indicated that it had already closed $2.3 million towards its $4 million goal from previous investors including ff Venture Capital, Contour Venture Partners, and Seavest Capital Partners, which all participated in Voxy’s Series A.
Founder and CEO Paul Gollash told Betabeat that Voxy plans on announcing two more “exciting” institutional investors in the coming weeks. The round was actually oversubscribed, “But we’ll limit the demand and allocate what’s available as best we can,” said Mr. Gollash, noting that he didn’t want to raise more capital than was necessary. Admirable restraint in these frothy times. Read More
Branch Joins Obvious Corp, Picks Up $2 M. from Lerer Ventures and SV Angel, and Heads East to Betaworks
When you’ve got Evan Williams, John Borthwick, and Max Levchin chatting it up on your “curated discussion platform,” it’s probably just a matter of time before the high-powered investors,
incubators makers, and other loosely-defined collectives come a’ calling.
Today, Branch, the startup that initially launched in New York City as group blogging service Roundtable, announced that is now partnered with Obvious Corp and picked up investments from Lerer Ventures and SV Angel. Although Branch has been working out of Obvious headquarters since the beginning of this year, the startup will move to Betaworks this summer. Cofounder Josh Miller’s announcement is somewhat obliquely worded, but it sounds like Rick Webb, Lucas Nelson, Ryan Freitas, and David Tisch also joined the round.
The size of the round wasn’t disclosed. However, this Form D SEC filing for Roundtable Media (the startup’s original name) filed by Joshua Alexander Miller, seems to indicate that the size of the round was $1,999,997 and fully subscribed. The address on the Form D, for example, is the same address as Obvious Corp. According to the Form D, the funding was an equity round with seven investors and the date of first sale is listed as February 15th. We have reached out to Mr. Miller for confirmation. Read More
ff Venture Capital Quietly Raised a $27 M. Fund Last November and Has Already Invested in 23 Startups
ff Venture Capital has been giving new meaning to word stealth mode. Tucked into an interview on TechCrunch yesterday was the news, reported for the first time, that the New York City-based seed investment firm had raised a $27 million fund last November. What’s more, it had already invested in 23 companies and expected to finish its goal of 30 to 40 companies perhaps by the end of the year.
According to ff Venture’s—the fund insists on the cummings-style “ff”—Form D filing, which sneakily offers a Roseland, New Jersey address, rather than its Midtown headquarters, the company filed an intent to raise on November, 29, 2010. Partner John Frankel says the firm was already deploying capital from the new “silver” fund even as it was raising the dough. Of the 23 investments, which includes startups like Klout, ThinkNear, Livefyre, Voxy, and Kohort, four have had up rounds. “So, it looks like performance is accelerating,” he told Erick Schonfeld in a video interview.
But ff has another feather in their cap, their previous $6.3 million fund, raised in 2008 “two months after Lehman collapsed,” as Mr. Frankel, a Goldman Sachs refugee, points out. According to him, Prequin ranked that fund, called “ff blue,” the top-performing VC fund through the end of 2010. Read More
Village Ventures is breaking up. Sort of,” Dan Primack writes in his Term Sheet newsletter this morning. The New York City-based early stage venture capital firm, which invested in notable startups like Dwolla, Zipmark, On Deck Capital, and Simple, will be losing co-founders Matt Harris and Bo Peabody. However the fund’s administration office, based in Williamstown, Massachusetts, will remain open “for the foreseeable future.”
Mr. Harris will be rejoining Bain Capital Ventures (the VC arm of the private equity firm founded by Mitt Romney), while Mr. Peabody will be moving to Greycroft Partners. Rather than citing consolidation in the VC sector (with the rich and well-connected getting more funding and deal flow), Mr. Harris tells Mr. Primack that it had more to do with lack of a coherent and scalable investment philosophy: Read More