Kleiner Perkins seals $600m for first fund since big personnel changes at top

Storied venture capital house Kleiner Perkins has raised $600m for its first fund since a series of wholesale personnel changes at the top of the firm.

The 47-year-old firm, which rebranded from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers last year, lost general partner Eric Feng and partners Lynne Chou-O’Keefe and Beth Seidenberg in 2018.

It also saw veteran investment expert Mary Meeker and the rest of its later-stage ‘digital growth team’ spin out to form an independent firm, leaving Kleiner Perkins to focus on early-stage dealmaking.

Kleiner Perkins is an experienced investor in the FinTech space, with recent deals including leading the $250m Series C for Plaid alongside Andreessen Horowitz to give the financial services app infrastructure provider a $2.65bn valuation.

Three months ago it led a $27m Series C round for online bill payments platform Plastiq.

Kleiner’s new fund – Fund XVIII – will be led by Ted Schlein and Wen Hsieh, the two remaining GPs from its predecessor vehicle, which it closed on $400m in 2016.

A statement from Kleiner Perkins about the fund close said, “Venture capital has evolved dramatically over the past decades.

“As we deliberated our strategy and studied our history, the answer was clear – we’re going ‘back to the future’ returning to Kleiner’s roots.

“We believe that venture is a non-scalable, boutique craft. It requires incredibly dedicated practitioners with diverse and complementary backgrounds that span technology, operating, and investing.

“Above all, in an increasingly fragmented market, venture requires focus. We’ll focus on early stage investing, where we can partner with incredible founders and help them build the foundations of their business.

“It’s at these stages where we as technologists, operators, and seasoned investors, can create the most impact for our founders, our limited partners, and ultimately advance how we all live and work.”

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