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Couple donates $5 million to University of Utah for evergreen fund focused on start-ups

A philanthropic couple who live in Utah are backing the new University of Utah with a unique new program named the “Joan and Tim Fenton Founders Fund.” The initiative is designed to accelerate promising student and university-connected businesses at earlier stages than might typically be of interest to traditional venture capital funds. And, unlike a typical academic institution donation, the $5 million comes in the form of an investment fund intended to generate returns over time from successful recipient businesses. Proceeds from those investments will be plowed back into the fund so it can help even more start-ups in the future.

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