September 11, 2012 3:15 pm EST – THRIVE CAPITAL, the upstart New York venture firm, last week raised its third fund since its founding just 3 years ago...and by far its largest fund, at an impressive $150 Million ($147 Million to be exact, securing 36 investors - including Princeton University - to Thrive's latest and largest fund). As PrivCo data on Thrive's investments to date demonstrates, the big raise in a choppy VC fundraising environment proves that merit and a successful early track record can lead to a very healthy new fund raise for such a young firm...and an unusually large fund by New York City venture capital firm standards, who tend to raise much smaller funds than their Silicon Valley counterparts.
Thrive Capital was founded in 2009 by Josh Kushner, son of real-estate mogul Charles Kushner (and not to be confused with his better known brother Jared Kushner, husband of Ivanka Trump (daughter of Donald Trump and VP of the privately-held Trump Organization), and owner of the The New York Observer). PrivCo's review of the offering documents confirm that Thrive Capital initially sought to raise $125M, but exceeded its target amount after significant interest from returning limited partners in addition to new investors. Returning investors include prestigious names such as Princeton University, Hall Capital Partners and the Wellcome Trust.
Heavy interest in Thrive's latest fund - rare in its size for a mere 3 year old firm - can be attributed to an early investing record that has already produced quick exits in some of the industry’s hottest companies. Most notably: Thrive Capital's lead investment in Instagram’s Series B round, closed only a week before it was sold to Facebook for $1 Billion in cash and stock (a deal size that was later reduced closer to $750M due to Facebook's falling stock price), and an angel investment in GroupMe, which was acquired only a year after by Skype. However, what sets Thrive Capital apart is its ability to recognize industry defining companies, and successfully partake in their funding, most notably with companies such as Fab.com, Dwolla, Art.sy, Warby Parker, Kickstarter and most recently, partnering with Ashton Kutcher to invest in Vyclone’s Series A.
Thrive Capital's new fund will allow Thrive to compete for and lead larger deals, and compete with the big boys in the venture capital industry for the hottest deals.
PrivCo CEO and Founder Sam Hamadeh said today in a statement, "Josh Kushner might have received his initial start through his considerable family connections, but based on PrivCo tracking of Thrive Capital's track record so far, there should be little doubt now that he and Thrive Capital are now raising money on his own merits as a smart and prescient venture capital investor. Based on its investment returns so far, PrivCo expects a tremendous future for Thrive Capital, and we are likely witnessing the newest addition to the club of New York's top venture capital firms."
Select Thrive Capital Portfolio Companies:
Co-invests Frequently With:
Thrive Capital Recent Exits
Thrive Capital Initial Investment Date: April 2012
Investment Round: Series B
Funding Amount: $50M
Round Valuation: $500M
Exit Date: April 2012
Acquired By: Facebook (Nasdaq:FB)
Exit: Days after Thrive Capital made its first investment in Instagram, the company was acquired by Facebook (Nasdaq:FB) for an initial consideration of $1B (a deal size that was later reduced due to Facebook's plummeting stock price).
2. Mindless Dribble, (Doing Business as GroupMe)
Thrive Capital Initial Investment Date: August 2010
Investment Round: Angel
Funding Amount: $850,000
Exit Date: August 2011
Acquired By: Skype S.A.R.L (NYSE: MSFT)
Exit: One year after GroupMe raised angel funding from SV Angel, First Round Capital, Lerer Ventures and Thrive Capital, Skype (NYSE:MSFT) acquired the group messaging service for an undisclosed amount.
3. Hot Potato
Thrive Capital Initial Investment Date: November 2009
Investment Round: Series A
Funding Amount: $1.42M
Exit Date: July 2010
Acquired By: Facebook (Nasdaq:FB)
Thrive Capital Initial Investment Date: December 2010
Investment Round: Seed
Funding Amount: $1.15M
Exit Date: February 2012
Acquired By: Groupon (Nasdaq:GRPN)