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April 25, 2024 | Tom Ballard

VC News | California and New York see four new or expanded funds announced

They include Toyota Ventures two funds of $150 million each and Regeneron's $500 million fund.

From Los Altos, CA:

Toyota Ventures, the early stage venture capital arm of Toyota, launched two $150 million funds to expand its investments in start-ups developing disruptive technologies and business models at the forefront of innovation. The addition of the new funds, Toyota Ventures Frontier Fund II (TVFF II) and Toyota Ventures Climate Fund II (TVCF II), brings the firm’s total assets under management to over $800m.

  • TVFF II will focus on deep technology start-ups in areas like artificial intelligence, robotics, mobility, cloud, and quantum computing, to expand Toyota Ventures’ international presence. The new fund will be led by Frontier Fund Partner David Sokolic, a veteran investor and operating executive. Portfolio companies in the initial Frontier Fund include satellite servicing provider Starfish Space, biosensor maker Scentian Bio, and quantum computing software start-up Haiqu, among others.
  • TVCF II will seek out start-ups developing smart, scalable solutions that combat climate change and promote environmental sustainability. It will build on the firm’s inaugural climate-focused fund, which launched in 2021 and grew to a portfolio of 18 companies under the leadership of Climate Fund Partner Lisa Coca. The first Climate Fund portfolio includes companies in renewable energy like Avalanche Energy; energy storage and batteries like e-Zinc and AM Batteries; carbon capture, removal and utilization like Air Company and Living Carbon; hydrogen solutions like Ecolectro; and other areas aligned with Toyota’s carbon neutrality goals.

From Princeton, NJ:

SOSV has announced the close of SOSV V fund at $306 million, the firm’s largest fund to date.

According to the news release announcing the new fund, SOSV V will focus on deep tech start-ups in human and planetary health, with an emphasis on decarbonization and re-industrialization, even as SOSV continues to make investments in health ranging from therapeutics to medical devices.

The firm invests starting at pre-seed, when companies join its HAX and IndieBio development programs, and continues through series seed, A, and later stages, resulting in about 200 investments per year. It operates start-up program facilities in New York City, Newark, and San Francisco and graduates about 80 start-ups a year.

SOSV also tracks top portfolio start-ups in its annual Climate Tech 100 and Human Health 100 lists

From San Francisco, CA:

Maven Ventures, a seed stage venture capital firm, closed its fourth fund at $60 million. The firm invests in tech companies addressing emerging consumer behavior and trends. Areas of investment are consumer artificial intelligence, digital health and personalized healthcare, future of families, fintech and consumer climate and sustainability. According to a report in VC Wire, the firm makes six to eight core investments each year. Its team specializes in investing in companies at seed with an average check size between $1 to $1.5 million.

From New York City:

Regeneron announced last week that it is launching a $500 million venture capital fund that will invest in promising biotechnology innovation amid a renewed wave of investment activity in the biotech market.

According to the announcement, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals will serve as the exclusive limited partner to the VC fund — called Regeneron Ventures — and commit $100 million annually over the next five years. While the fund has an investment mandate that includes healthcare broadly, it will lean towards biotechnology, devices, tools, and enabling technologies.

Regeneron Ventures will be independently managed by former Regeneron executives Jay Markowitz and Michael Aberman, who will also direct the fund’s investment strategy. Before joining Regeneron Ventures, Aberman held Chief Executive Officer positions at XenImmune Therapeutics and Quentis Therapeutics. Prior to that, Aberman spent seven years at Regeneron, with his most recent position at the pharma being Vice President of Investor Relations and Strategy. Markowitz most recently served as senior partner at VC firm ARCH Venture Partners. He also worked at Regeneron from 2017 to 2020 as Senior Vice President.

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