Bain Capital Ventures has a fresh $1B to invest in startups

Bain Capital Ventures has raised $1 billion across three new funds.

Bain Capital Ventures (BCV), the venture capital arm of the private equity giant Bain Capital, has brought in $1 billion to invest in startups across industries and stages.

The capital has been spread across three funds: $650 million for its eighth flagship vehicle, $250 million for a co-investment fund focused on growth-stage investments and an additional $100 million directly from the partners at Bain Capital, which will be deployed on every investment out of the latest fund.

Founded in 1984, BCV is known for its investments in LinkedIn, Rent the Runway, SurveyMonkey, SendGrid and DocuSign. Initially, the firm was more of a growth-stage investor, though it’s warmed to early-stage companies, making a total of 106 early-stage investments, 52 of which were at the seed stage, since 2013. The firm says that’s triple its total volume of seed and Series A investments from previous years, thanks to the members of its West Coast investment team, who are responsible for striking a majority of BCV’s early-stage bets.

The firm opened its first office in San Francisco in 2016. BCV also has offices in New York, Boston and Palo Alto.

BCV’s seventh flagship fund closed on $600 million in 2016; its latest core vehicle is even larger. Ajay Agarwal, one of BCV’s eight managing directors since 2003, said that’s because of the bull market and lack of liquidity in venture capital, which has caused several VC funds to raise larger and larger pools of capital. Just look at Thrive Capital or GGV Capital, for example, VC funds that have surpassed $1 billion with recent fund closes.

Bain Capital Ventures is headquartered in San Francisco.

“We, like many of our peers, have far more demand for our funds than we have the capacity for,” Agarwal told TechCrunch. “Companies are taking longer to go public and therefore require more capital, but we don’t want the fund size to get too large.”

“It’s certainly an environment where lots and lots of capital is coming into the market … It puts even more of an emphasis on firms that have a real competitive differentiation — something unique to offer entrepreneurs.”

BCV invests in 12 to 14 companies per year, not including its seed-stage portfolio companies. Recent investments include Ribbon, a real estate tech startup that brought in $225 million in October; Basis, a cryptocurrency startup that raised $133 million in April; and messaging startup Attentive, which closed a $13 million round in February.

With the three additional funds, BCV has $4.9 billion in assets under management.

ShipBob brings in $40M to help e-commerce businesses compete with Amazon

ShipBob has raised a $40 million Series C to assist small direct-to-consumer e-commerce businesses with streamlining the fulfillment process, so it’s possible for them to maintain a well-managed inventory while getting orders out as quickly as possible.

Nowadays, those of us who shop for everyday goods online are accustomed to said goods arriving on our doorstep 24 to 48 hours after we click ‘buy.’ That’s because of Amazon; the e-commerce giant’s next-day delivery feature is a sweet, sweet deal, but for smaller e-commerce businesses that are trying to compete with Jeff Bezos it’s, well, tough.

ShipBob is here to help. The Chicago-based startup has raised a $40 million Series C to help small e-commerce businesses streamline the fulfillment process and manage inventory.

The company was launched through Y Combinator in 2014 by CEO Dhruv Saxena and Divey Gulati, a pair of engineers that met after college.

“Once we graduated, we thought up this e-commerce store and we were able to automate basically everything in the operation except for shipping and logistics,” Saxena told TechCrunch. “We realized none of the existing solutions out there worked. So, we applied to Y Combinator with this idea that there has never been an easier time to start an e-commerce brand online and these brands need shipping, logistics and back office solutions.”

ShipBob previously raised a $5 million Series A in 2016 and a $17.5 million Series B last year.

Menlo Ventures led the latest round and was joined by existing investors Bain Capital Ventures, Hyde Park Venture Partners, Hyde Park Angels and Y Combinator. As part of the deal, Menlo partner Shawn Carolan is joining ShipBob’s board of directors. 

“We love how ShipBob lets smaller, creative merchants affordably offer fast shipping across the country,” Carolan said in a statement. “Customers want what they want, and they want it fast, and it takes serious technology to make it look easy.”