L.A. County Sees Record VC Funding

L.A. County Sees Record VC Funding

VC 2 LABJ 1/28/15 http://labusinessjournal.com/news/2015/jan/28/la-county-sees-record-vc-funding/

L.A. County set a record for VC funding last quarter, buoyed by Snapchat’s $485 million round that closed out the year.

Venture investors put $765 million into 28 L.A. companies for the quarter ending Dec. 31, according to CB Insights. That’s nearly three times the amount raised for the same period in the previous year. Snapchat’s fourth round of financing made up 64 percent of the county’s total raise.

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Even without the mobile messaging app, fourth quarter funding was still slightly higher year-over-year by $10 million. NantMobile, a subsidiary of Culver City healthcare tech firm NantWorks that offers an augmented reality and mobile marketing platform, raised the county’s second largest round in October with $50 million in Series C funding. Mobile game developer Scopely ranked third with a $35 million Series A round in November.

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Billy O’Grady, a senior vice president with City National Bank who heads its tech and VC funding banking group, said L.A. startups are seeing more funding because they're starting to prove their sustainability. This year’s first quarter, he said, is already shaping up to be exciting as some startups take on VC money for the first time.

“They’ve built the product, they have the employees and now they just want to hit the gas and scale,” O’Grady said.

L.A.’s funding is still chump change compared to how much capital flows through Silicon Valley, which received $5.7 billion in the same quarter. Orange County startups received $114 million.

*Shared by Jeff Vertun

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