AngelList Bags $400M to Power Seed Fund for Startups

AngelList, an online platform which allows startups to raise capital from accredited investors has partnered with China-based private equity firm CSC Venture Capital to pour $400 million into seed-stage startups.

Naval Ravikant

“Firms often raise more money to get more fees. But with our model, we can just add more syndicate leads so we can keep putting money into the same kind of companies at the same stage” -Naval Ravikant (source)

The new fund, named CSC Upshot, would focus on US-based startups and will be managed separately from AngelList.

As per the company, CSC Upshot will primarily invest in syndicates led by experienced angels and VCs. It will help syndicates make larger, faster investments in early-stage startups and their follow-on rounds. It will also help promising new syndicates make investments while they’re building a backing from individual investors.

The Wall Street Journal described the deal as “largest-ever single investment by a Chinese private-equity firm in a US. fund”.

AngelList was founded in 2010 by India-origin serial entrepreneur Naval Ravikant along with Babak Nivi. Since its inception, AngelList is said to have facilitated over $200 million in investments for about 650 startups. It employs the “syndicates” model that allows highly influential investors to pool money from their personal funds for investments. Some of its portfolio companies, such as ride sharing app Uber, have gone onto become unicorns of the startup world.

Commenting on the matter, Naval Ravikant said, “As we add more limited partner capital we’re going to add more syndicate leads who are voting with their own dollar…We’re going to deploy an army of leads,” he added.

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CSC Venture Capital, or China Science & Merchants Investment Management Group, has about $12 billion under management. The fund has already chosen 50 top leads on the crowd-funding platform that will be considered for investments with the help of AngelList, reports Tech Circle.

“CSC Upshot is about Chinese LPs expanding globally and showing that Chinese companies can go out globally and compete in a way that gets them exposure at the very earliest stage, instead of waiting for the Series D round,” maintained Ravikant.

A few months back, there were rumors suggesting AngelList’s intentions of starting operations in India. The company has already taken its platform outside of the US with outposts now in the UK, Canada, Australia, and some parts of Europe.