SEC Filing Confirms Shakeup At Trinity Ventures, Now Targeting Its Smallest Fund In Decades

On Friday afternoon, Sand Hill Road venture capital firm Trinity Ventures submitted paperwork to the SEC disclosing its intent to raise $250 million for its thirteenth venture capital fund.

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If fully-raised, Trinity Ventures XIII will be the smallest venture fund raised by the early-stage investor in decades. In November 2015, Trinity Ventures XII closed out with $400 million under management. The last fund smaller than the $250 million targeted by Fund XIII was the $148 million Trinity Ventures secured all the way back in 1998 for Fund VI.

What’s notable, though, is the disconnect between prior reports from the Wall Street Journal and the filing made today. In February, the Wall Street Journal relayed information from an unnamed source that Trinity Ventures was targeting “between $350 million and $400 million for its new fund.” The source also said that a number of the firm’s established partners will not be party to Fund XIII.

Those changes were confirmed by this afternoon’s SEC filing. In the table below, we show the names listed under the “Related Persons” section of the Form D filings for Fund XII and Fund XIII. We highlighted in red the names of people who are not included on the GP roster for Fund XII and highlighted in green the names of new general partners added to the firm since 2015.

Fund XIII will be managed by five general partners, according to the filing. These GPs include:

Typically, in VC, general partners from the last fund who aren’t included on the most recent fund are obliged to continue their portfolio company directorships and advisory work as representatives of the firm to be included on management fee and carried interest distributions.

The firm seems to have long-term plans in place to continue investing in early-stage deals. On Thursday, the firm announced it promoted John Lin from associate to principal, which is typically a partner-track role.

Additionally, the firm brought in Lisa Coca as an executive in residence. Coca was a founding member of GE Ventures and co-founded their enterprise software practice.1 Prakash Ramamurthy, formerly an executive at Oracle and LifeLock, and one-time entrepreneur in residence at Trinity Ventures, joined the firm as an operating partner, according to the announcement.

At this time, the filing says the firm hasn’t received its first capital commitment for the new investment vehicle, but it’s not uncommon for firms to file Form Ds right before calling down capital from limited partners who’ve previously made “soft commits.” (It’s the difference between “I’ll send you a check” and “Check is in the mail.”) Trinity Ventures is raising private capital under Rule 506(b) of Regulation D, which specifies that a Form D must be filed within 15 days of the date of first sale.

Crunchbase News reached out to Trinity Ventures for comment but did not receive a reply in time for publication. This article will be updated if we hear back from them.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

  1. Back in June, Crunchbase News reported on General Electric’s plan to sell of GE Ventures’s portfolio, effectively divesting the industrial conglomerate from corporate venture altogether.

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