U of M drops venture capital fund plans, debuts seed-funding program

Stefanie Botelho's picture
Friday, August 22, 2014

In a pivot away from plans for venture capital funds worth $70 million, the University of Minnesota instead announced this week a seed-investment program that will provide early stage funding to select startup companies.

The U’s office for technology commercialization’s new Discovery Capital Investment Program will invest up to $350,000 per startup in equity financing in new startups that are based on university-discovered technology.

The program grew out of initial plans to form a university-focused venture capital fund. A spokeswoman for the U’s office of the vice president for research said a $50 million fund was intended for venture capital around the country and a $20 million fund would have been for seed funding for school-based startups. The U did not disclose whether any funding had already been raised for either of those funds.

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