Home Technology NEA, venture capital’s quiet giant, closes on $3.6 billion

NEA, venture capital’s quiet giant, closes on $3.6 billion

by aftermetrics

While many venture capital firms spend their days either chasing the limelight or shunning it, for the last 42 years, New Enterprise Associates has just done the work of investing capital and building startup businesses.

Now the firm has closed its latest investment vehicle, a $3.6 billion fund that brings its total capital under management to nearly $24 billion, according to a statement.

Unlike some firms, the partnership at NEA hasn’t really focused on star-making. For the last several years the fund has been run by Scott Sandell, who has been with the firm since 1996 (his last tweet was in 2010).

The strategy stands in sharp contrast to the loud voices and strong personalities that dominate venture capital’s online conversation. The browsers in business sections of airport bookstores won’t see many books on venture capital or thought leadership from NEA partners.

These days, the most public figure from NEA is Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former head of the Food and Drug Administration who has become a leading voice on the national response to the recent coronavirus outbreak.

What NEA does have are results. Sandell’s portfolio alone includes Salesforce.com, Tableau Software, WebEx and Workday.

In early January, Visa acquired another NEA portfolio company, Plaid, for over $5 billion.

In addition to the new capital, NEA has promoted Liza Landsman to general partner. Landsman joined the firm in 2018 after working as the president of the NEA portfolio company Jet.com (another multi-billion-dollar exit for the firm).

With its new fund, NEA will continue its strategy of investing across stages in technology and healthcare deals, with a focus, the firm says, on early-stage deals and some growth investments.

“We are deeply grateful to our limited partners for their commitment to NEA and their confidence in our ability to execute on the tremendous opportunity ahead,” said Scott Sandell, managing general partner, NEA, in a statement. “As technology transforms every industry globally and life sciences innovation continues to accelerate, NEA is in a great position to continue doing what we do best — work alongside entrepreneurs to build great companies that will shape the future of how we live, work and play.”

While Sandell leads the firm as its sole managing partner, Tony Florence takes point on the venture capital firm’s tech deals, and Mohamad Makhzoumi takes point on healthcare investing.

Also unique for a venture firm is the focus on stability. Every single one of NEA’s general partners were promoted into their roles, the firm said. And the average tenure of a partner is more than 12 years.

“Having worked with Liza over many years before she joined NEA, we knew she would be an outstanding addition to our team — we quickly realized that she was not only a great fit for our organization today, but someone who could play a really important role in shaping NEA for the future,” said Tony Florence, general partner and head of Technology Investing, NEA. “Her significant operating experience, especially with fast-growing consumer companies, is a tremendous asset to our team and our portfolio.”

The firm began raising its latest fund last March, as TechCrunch previously reported.

The filing lists the firm’s 10 general partners, including Sandell. The other nine include Forest Baskett, Tony Florence, Mo Makhzoumi, Joshua Makower, David Mott, Pete Sonsini, and Paul Walker, along with Carmen Chang, who heads up the firm’s Asia practice and was promoted to GP last year, and Ali Behbahani, a healthcare investor who was also promoted to GP last year.

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