Google Launches Venture Capitalist UnitBy: WebProNews Staff - April 7, 2009
With angel funding down 26 percent 2008, there’s probably a lot of Web entrepreneurs pretty happy to see Google quietly launch Google Ventures, the company’s new venture capitalist arm ready to drop tens of millions of dollars into a good idea.
Headed up by Googlers Bill Maris and Android cofounder Rich Miner, Google Ventures is set to drop some of that mountain of cash Google has been sitting on, a development that runs a bit contrary to Eric Schmidt’s declaration that Google would just hang on to its money during the recession.
The move is also interesting in light of how just a couple of years ago Google narrowly escaped being classified as an investment fund by the SEC precisely because of the amount of cash in Google’s coffers, a classification that would change Google’s tax burden.
From the Google Ventures website:
Google Ventures seeks to discover and grow great companies – we believe in the power of entrepreneurs to do amazing things. We’re studying a broad range of industries, including consumer Internet, software, hardware, clean-tech, bio-tech and health care. We invest anywhere from seed to mezzanine stage and embrace the challenge of helping young companies grow from the garage to global relevance.
Considering that Google surpassed GE in terms of market cap this week (probably a temporary thing), investing that cash might a be good idea, and may just inject a little liquidity into a burdened market.