VC Firm Lightspeed Venture Partners Raises $1.8B USD To Invest In Crypto Startups

Investing, News | July 11, 2018 By:

Venture capital firm Lightspeed Venture Partners is planning to invest in cryptocurrency startups after raising $1.8 billion.

Funded in October 2000, Lightspeed Venture Partners is a venture capital firm focusing on early stage investments in the enterprise technology and consumer space. To date, the firm has backed more than 300 companies, including messaging app Snapchat and Google’s DoubleClick.

According to Lightspeed, about $1.05 billion of the new funding will be earmarked for a separate fund to invest in more mature companies. The firm said that they want to add investments in cryptocurrency, biotechnology, new TV streaming services and cosmetics companies. The new funding will also be used for its planned Southeast Asia expansion.

Since startups rely on venture capital rather than the public markets for funding, Lightspeed will invest in a company repeatedly over the course of several years in order to maintain a significant ownership stake.

“That trend has only been increasing over time, and as a result our funds have been getting bigger over time as well,” said Jeremy Liew, a Lightspeed partner. Later-stage companies are less likely to go belly up, but are also less likely to provide extraordinary returns.”

In May of this year, it was reported that Lightspeed is looking into a venture capital project that solely invests in cryptocurrency projects. The firm was reportedly exploring three different options. The first option involves creating a crypto fund within the larger Lightspeed fund pool. The second option is the creation of an entirely new fund dedicated to crypto investment. The final approach being considered is the creation of a breakaway company backed by Lightspeed.

“We’ve been making many investments in the FinTech space over the past several years, including Affirm, blockchain, Basis and more that are unannounced, a Lightspeed spokesperson said at the time. “Blockchain-based technologies are a huge area of interest for us and we have partners focused on this. In terms of a dedicated crypto fund, we have nothing to announce at this time.”