Uber‘s massive $1.2B financing round from Fidelity Investments, BlackRock and Wellington Management makes it the most valuable venture-backed private company in tech today. It’s also the latest instance of mutual fund giants deploying large sums of cash to propel high-profile tech startups.
And with the rise of mutual funds in tech VC, the data shows that when mutual funds do decide to back a high-flying startup they follow a group of top tier VC firms. The data below.
Mutual funds get busy with each other
The business social graph below highlights the tech deal activity of five mutual fund investors in tech – Fidelity Investments, BlackRock, T. Rowe Price, Janus and Wellington Management since 2009. Among the five, T. Rowe has been most prolific, completing 12 tech transactions ranging from Pure Storage to Wayfair to Eventbrite just in 2014 to date.
Of note, mutual funds frequently pile in or co-invest in the same private tech companies. As the visualization shows, 13 companies count two or more of the five mutual funds as investors over the period including MongoDB, Domo, New Relic and Apptio.
Who invests before the mutual funds?
Peeling back the investors doing the highest number of deals that the mutual funds subsequently follow on, a handful of VCs stand out. Silicon Valley heavyweights Greylock Partners, Sequoia Capital and Benchmark Capital have invested in the highest number of companies prior to T. Rowe Price, as just one example. Previously Greylock-backed companies that T. Rowe has followed on include Cloudera, AirBnB, Redfin and Pure Storage. BlackRock, meanwhile, appears to count Benchmark as its most frequent VC it sources deals from. BlackRock investments first financed by Benchmark range from Hortonworks to Prosper Marketplace to Uber.
The investment syndicate dashboards below (found on every CB Insights investor profile) highlight a few of the top investors in rounds before BlackRock, T. Rowe Price, and Fidelity, respectively.