The number of corporations making either direct investments into startups or adding separate venture arms has grown steadily over the past few years. Now, a coterie of some of the most highly-valued startups is also joining in on the action.
Backed by big war chests, “unicorns” including Flipkart and Didi-Kuaidi, have participated in startup financings this year (in some cases, co-investing with their own investors). Others have partnered with their venture investors to launch investment funds. These include SkyFund, from DJI and Accel Partners; and TwilioFund, from Twilio and its venture investors DFJ, Bessemer Venture Partners, and Redpoint Ventures. Expensify, an automated expense-management startup backed by $25M in VC funding, actually launched its own corporate venture unit, Expensify Ventures, in July.
Using CB Insights data, we compiled a list of 15 startups that have received an investment from another currently private venture-backed startup or an entity affiliated with it in 2015 YTD. As the chart below highlights, startups have “gotten in” to other startups at all stages of the maturity spectrum.
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