Akkadian Ventures Closes over $74 Million and Expands Team for Secondary Investing

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Firm’s third fund expands capabilities for early employees and investors of venture-backed businesses

“Akkadian Ventures has been a trusted long term partner for us. They have successfully navigated the often complex liquidity needs of our employees and have been a pleasure to work with.” Mike Dinsdale, CFO of DocuSign.

Today, Akkadian Ventures announced the closing of the firm’s third fund focused exclusively on helping entrepreneurs and investors achieve their liquidity goals. Akkadian Ventures III was oversubscribed, exceeding its original target of $50 million. The fund is comprised of a direct secondary fund with additional investing capacity through co-investment funds and is backed by premier institutional investors in the US and Europe. Akkadian Ventures III brings the firm’s total assets under management to $108 million. The fund is led by veteran private equity investors Ben Black and Mike Gridley.

Akkadian Ventures has created a broad offering of products and services to help entrepreneurs and investors generate liquidity and diversify their risk by monetizing a portion of their private stock. Akkadian Ventures’ early track record points to the value of this approach for both entrepreneurs as well as investors. Out of 20 portfolio companies, the firm has had seven companies successfully exit, with five initial public offerings (Splunk, Rocket Fuel, RingCentral, Opower and Convio) and two acquisitions (Ooyala and Medio Systems).

“Akkadian Ventures has been a trusted long term partner for us. They have successfully navigated the often complex liquidity needs of our employees and have been a pleasure to work with.” Mike Dinsdale, CFO of DocuSign.

Akkadian Ventures III has already invested 20% of the committed capital and sees tremendous opportunity in the current market environment. The average time from inception to venture-backed IPO is close to seven years.

Akkadian Ventures’ liquidity solutions include loans, profit sharing and stock purchases, with transactions ranging from $75,000 to over $10 million. Akkadian Ventures applies a proprietary, data-driven diligence methodology that enables the firm to pre-approve many companies for its liquidity programs.

Ben Black’s track record includes Splunk, Opower, Rocket Fuel, DocuSign, The Villa (Acquired), Allconnect, Cloudmark, Under Armour, Citizenhawk (Acquired), Trupanion, and Telephia (Acquired). Prior to co-founding Akkadian Ventures, Black was the co-founder of New Cycle Capital, a seed fund focused on socially responsible investing and was also on the investment teams at Maveron and Rosewood Capital.

Mike Gridley, an investing pioneer in the venture capital secondary markets, joined Akkadian Ventures in 2013. Gridley was on the founding team of Industry Ventures, where he served as a Managing Director since 2004. Gridley led Industry’s investments in Facebook, Twitter, Pandora, LifeLock, Jajah (Acquired by Telefonica), Cloudmark, Lowercase Capital (Twitter, Uber, Instagram), Walden Venture Capital (Pandora, Glam, SoundHound) and Madrona Ventures (Isilon), among others. He also helped grow Industry Ventures from less than $10 million AUM to over $1 billion AUM.

“Unlike most institutional investors, we love working with small stockholders. Over the past three years, Akkadian Ventures has built a solid track record of creating value for small stockholders, working with over 120 entrepreneurs, employees and investors to solve their liquidity problems. I believe that this third fund is strong validation for our differentiated approach and our team,” said Black.

“We are very pleased with the strong institutional support for Akkadian Ventures III. We have seen the venture secondary market evolve over time, and we believe a focused investment strategy working closely with entrepreneurs, employees and investors produces the best outcomes,” said Gridley.

With Akkadian Ventures III, the team has expanded to include Rob Bailey as a Venture Partner. Bailey was most recently CEO of DataSift, a leading venture-backed Big Data company. He has over a decade of experience scaling a wide variety of companies as both founder and executive and brings significant domain experience in Big Data and SaaS to the Akkadian Ventures team.

About Akkadian Ventures
Akkadian Ventures is a direct secondary investment firm focused on providing liquidity to early employees and investors of venture-backed businesses. Akkadian Ventures offers tailored and unique solutions for companies and employees, with key benefits that include speed, tax efficiency and respect for confidentiality. Founded in 2010, Akkadian Ventures is based in San Francisco, CA. For more information, please visit http://www.akkadianventures.com

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