Morning Markets: A new fund this week caught our eye, and Utah is the reason why.
This week Sorenson Ventures announced its first fund, a $110 million vehicle aimed at “early-stage enterprise software and security investments,” according to a release.
Another day, another fund, so why do we care about this one? One reason, really, and it’s not that Sorenson Capital put together the fund (the Capital part of the larger Sorenson org has $1 billion under management, according to itself). Instead, it’s that Sorenson’s newly-capitalized venture arm has offices in both Silicon Valley and Utah.
Utah, of course, is a tech scene that has seen its prominence rise in recent quarters with large exits (think the multi-billion dollar Qualtrics sale to SAP), and a number of big rounds (our coverage of Podium is useful here, I think), making the partial home of this new fund all the more interesting.
The fund did note in an email to Crunchbase News this morning that while it has a local presence in Utah, it will invest “in companies all over the country.” Still, having a new fund on the ground in Utah, especially one aimed at earlier-stage startups is notable.
According to Crunchbase data, just three early-stage venture rounds have been recorded in Utah thus far in 2019. That feels light (though, of course, the start of any calendar year can be slow from a venture perspective as deals take time to compile and venture typically slows during the holiday months), frankly, given the late-stage activity the state put up in 2018.
For the curious, Utah’s 2019 early-stage deals as of this morning are the Big Squid $9 million Series A, Filevine’s $8.3 million Series A, and Kuali’s $12 million venture round. Sorenson Ventures claims eight extant investments and intends to raise that figure to fifteen to twenty with its new money.
In other fund news, we took a look at the new Scalework’s capital vehicle earlier this week. While it’s in-vogue to raise billion-dollar funds, not every fund needs to be outsized.
Of course, the new Sorenson fund was oversubscribed. Sorenson Ventures had targeted a $100 million fund in 2019.