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Exclusive: Wireframe's $77M fund eyes climate

A green sprout shaped like a dollar sign rises from a terra cotta pot.

Wireframe Ventures raised $77 million for a pre-seed and seed fund focused on climate tech, health and other verticals.

Why it matters: The size of the fund, and the investor interest it attracted, is the latest sign of how competition in climate tech is driving funders to seek earlier-stage — and riskier — companies.

Details: Wireframe Ventures II is the firm's second fund to target companies at the pre-seed and seed stage. It is targeting about 30 companies.

  • One early Fund II company, Solo Advanced Vehicle Technologies, announced $7 million in seed funding last month, led by Trucks VC, along with Wireframe and Maniv Mobility. 

Catch up fast: Wireframe Ventures' first fund launched in 2016. Its investments included, which last month announced a $90 million Series B; Mammoth Biosciences, which became a unicorn in September; and Electriphi, which was acquired by Ford Motor Company last summer.

Go deeper: Wireframe's founders tell Axios their second fund has attracted a wider range of limited partners compared to 2016, including a broader array of institutional investors.

  • LPs in Fund II include The Nature Conservancy and Three Cairns Group, among others.

What they're saying: "You start to see explosive valuations once there is proof in the technology, scale in the business," Wireframe Ventures managing partner and co-founder Paul Straub tells Axios. "Once there is validation in the technology, scale in the business, you attract very, very competitive rounds."

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