Sequoia Capital two years ago made a decision that stunned many of its VC peers and limited partners: It would raise a whopping $8 billion for its third global growth fund, in an effort to defend both itself and its portfolio companies from SoftBank Vision Fund.
A source close to the situation says that Sequoia Global Growth III is only a month or two behind its expected investment pace, with the bigger change being that it's written a larger number of (relatively) smaller-sized checks.
The bottom line: Sequoia in 2018 looked like it was bringing a knife to a gun-fight. In 2020, bullets are overrated.
• Food fund: Tom Mastrobuoni, who co-founded Tyson Food’s corporate venture group before leaving late last year, has joined Big Idea Ventures to raise a $250 million-targeted fund focused on food startups, Axios has learned.
🎧 Pro Rata Podcast digs into Microsoft's "carbon-negative" climate pledge, and how it's already hedging its political bets. Listen here.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
The Athletic, a subscription-based digital sports media company, raised $50 million in Series D funding led by Bedrock Capital at a $500 million post-money valuation.
• AppsFlyer, an Israeli provider of mobile attribution and marketing analytics SaaS, raised $210 million in Series D funding at a $1.6 billion valuation. General Atlantic led, and was joined by Qumra Capital, Goldman Sachs, DTCP, Pitango VC, and Magma Venture Partners. www.appsflyer.com
• Snyk, a London-based developer of security analysis tools, raised $150 million led by Stripes Group. www.snyk.io
• Skylo, a San Mateo, Calif.-based network that connects any machine or sensor via satellites, raised $103 million in Series B funding. SoftBank Group led, and was joined by return backers DCM, Innovation Endeavors, and Moore Strategic Ventures. http://axios.link/pxrO
• Tink, a Swedish open-banking platform, raised €90 million at a €415 million post-money valuation. Dawn Capital, HMI Capital and Insight Partners co-led, and were joined by Poste Italiane, Heartcore Capital, ABN Amro, and BNP Paribas. http://axios.link/WORp
• FloQast, a Los Angeles-based provider of software for accountants, raised $40 million in Series C funding. Norwest Venture Partners led, and was joined by return backers Insight Partners and Norwest Partners. www.floqast.com
• Soft Robotics, a Bedford, Mass.-based robotics startup, raised $23 million in Series B funding. Calibrate Ventures and Material Impact co-led, and were joined by Fanuc Corp. and return backers Honeywell, Hyperplane, Scale, Tekfen Ventures, and Yamaha. http://axios.link/qDxG
• Home, a Berlin-based marketplace for apartment landlords and tenants, raised €11 million in Series A funding from Capnamic, EQT Ventures, FJ Labs, and Redalpine. http://axios.link/PCpt
🚑 Elder, a British in-home elder care marketplace, raised £8.2 million. MMC Ventures led, and was joined by Acton Capital. http://axios.link/hZUD
• Loliware, a developer of seaweed-based materials to replace plastics, raised $6 million led by Hatzimemos/Libby. www.loliware.com
• Samya.ai, a Chicago-based provider of revenue growth software, raised $6 million in seed funding led by Sequoia India. http://axios.link/lvTg
🚑 Vivante Health, a Houston-based digital medicine startup focused on gut health, raised $5.8 million in Series A1 funding from Lifeforce Capital, Big Pi Ventures, NFP Ventures, FCA Venture Partners, and Longmont Capital. www.vivantehealth.com
• Mine, a London-based startup that helps users enforce their “right to be forgotten,” raised $3 million in seed funding from Battery Ventures and Saban Ventures. www.saymine.com
• Stasher, a London-based luggage storage startup, raised $2.5 million led by Venture Friends. http://axios.link/GJr2
• Pawlicy, a pet insurance marketplace, raised $1 million in seed funding led by Defy Ventures. www.pawlicy.com
• Adrian and Macquarie Group are among the bidders for Portuguese toll road operator Brisa, which could fetch around €3 billion, per Bloomberg. http://axios.link/6vbk
• Asterion Industrial Partners, a Europe-focused private equity infrastructure firm, raised €1.1 billion for its debut fund. www.asterionindustrial.com
• Brand Velocity Partners acquired Original Footwear, a Stockton, Calif.-based maker of footwear for military and law enforcement personnel. www.originalswat.com
• CityFibre, a London-based fiberoptic infrastructure company owned by Goldman Sachs and Antin Infrastructure Partners, paid £200 million for the fiber unit of TalkTalk (LSE: TALK). http://axios.link/UHVe
• Davies, a London-based insurance claims company, raised new equity funding from existing backers HGGC and Alberta Investment Management Corp. Some proceeds were used to buy Keoghs, an insurance-focused law firm. www.davies-group.com
• MML Capital Partners acquired Arrow Business Communications, a UK-based provider of business telecom services. www.arrowcommunications.co.uk
• Rhone Group and Chatterjee Group agreed to buy Lummus Technology, a Bloomfield, N.J.-based provider of chemical processing technologies for hydrocarbon industry, for $2.725 billion from oilfield services company McDermott International (NYSE: MDR), which will file for bankruptcy protection.
• Skyview Capital acquired Fidelis Cybersecurity, a Bethesda, Md.-based enterprise network security company, from Marlin Equity Partners. www.fidelissecurity.com
• No companies plan to go public on U.S. exchanges this week.
🚑 Black Diamond Therapeutics, a Cambridge, Mass.-based cancer precision medicine company, set IPO terms to 8.9 million shares at $16-$18. It would have an initial market cap of $555 million, were it to price in the middle, and plans to trade on the Nasdaq (BDTX) with J.P. Morgan as lead underwriter. The pre-revenue company raised $190 million in VC funding from firms like Versant Ventures (42.09% pre-IPO stake), NEA (11.16%), RA Capital (6.7%), and Boxer Capital (5.59%). http://axios.link/1uOj
🚑 One Medical, a chain of primary care clinics, set IPO terms to 17.5 million shares at $16-$18. It would have an initial market cap of $2.08 billion, were it to price in the middle, and plans to trade on the Nasdaq (ONEM) with J.P. Morgan as lead underwriter. The company reports a $34 million net loss on $199 million of revenue for the first nine months of 2019, and raised over $530 million in VC funding from firms like The Carlyle Group (26.8% pre-IPO stake), Benchmark (13%), Oak Investment Partners (11.4%), DAG Ventures (7.6%), GV (5.9%), J.P. Morgan (5.4%), and Maverick (5.2%). http://axios.link/o0mQ
• Reynolds Consumer Products, the maker of aluminum foil and Hefty trash bags, and other household and kitchen products, set IPO terms to 47.17 million shares at $25-$28. It would have an initial market cap of $5.37 billion, and plans to trade on the Nasdaq (REYN) with Credit Suisse as lead underwriter. http://axios.link/FWJf
🚑 Affinity Equity Partners is seeking a buyer for a Malaysian hospital that could fetch more than $500 million, per Bloomberg. http://axios.link/YKil
• Tinicum is in talks to sell Consolidated Aerospace Manufacturing, a Fullerton, Calif.-based aerospace components maker, to Stanley Black & Decker (NYSE: SWK) for more than $1 billion, per Reuters. http://axios.link/u5Zu
• Air-France KLM (Paris: AIRF) offered to buy up to a 49% stake in troubled Malaysia Airlines, while Japan Airlines (Tokyo: 9201) is seeking a 25% stake, per Reuters. http://axios.link/I3aC
• BAE Systems (LSE: BAES) agreed to pay $2.2 billion for a pair of businesses — a GPS unit and an airborne tactical radios unit — being divested by United Technologies (NYSE: UTC) and Raytheon (NYSE: RTN), as a result of their merger. http://axios.link/E6YT
• Uber (NYSE: UBER) sold its food-delivery business in India to Zomato in exchange for a 9.99% stake in the startup. http://axios.link/tnuh
• UBS agreed to sell a majority stake in fund distribution group Fondcenter for $400 million to Deutsche Boerse-owned Clearstream. http://axios.link/cZ0m
• Citigroup formed a $150 million "impact" fund that will back companies focused on sustainability, workforce development, financial capability, and pysical and societal infrastructure. www.citi.com
• EQT Partners of Sweden is targeting €14.75 billion for its fourteenth flagship private equity fund, per Financial News. http://axios.link/Oaad
• Fifth Wall is raising $200 million for a VC fund aimed at helping real estate companies reduce carbon emissions. http://axios.link/cdUM
• Stone Point Capital of Connecticut raised $7 billion for its eighth private equity fund. www.stonepoint.com
• Amplify Partners promoted Lenny Pruss to general partner and Sarah Catanzaro to partner. www.amplifypartners.com
• Digital Currency Group named Mark Murphy as COO. He joined the firm in 2018 as head of communications and public policy. www.dcg.co
• Monomoy Capital Partners promoted Lee Mlotek to managing director.
• Sandesh Patnam (ex-Premji Invest) and Jess Segal (ex-Vista Equity) joined DFJ Growth as partners. Patnam will focus on tech investments, while Segal will lead IR. www.dfjgrowth.com
• Pantheon promoted Toni Vainio and Erik Wong to partner. It also named partner Andrea Echberg as co-head of its global infrastructure and real assets group. www.pantheon.com
• Perella Weinberg Partners promoted Doug McGovern (New York) and Cyrille Perard (Paris) to partner. www.pwpartners.com
🏈 Richard Sherman, who will appear in Super Bowl LIV as a starting cornerback for the San Francisco 49ers, has joined Cisco-backed venture capital group Decibel as an advisor. http://axios.link/8IKS
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