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Google Ventures year in review: Life sciences and health are key areas of investment


Update: The Financial Times is reporting that Google Ventures is shutting down its $125 million European fund. Starting in 2016, all investments will be made by a global fund, rather than having separate US and European divisions. Five investments made by its European fund were in the UK, while the sixth, a Swedish VR gaming studio, was invested by its US fund.

As 2015 comes to a close, Google Ventures, Alphabet’s venture capital arm, has released their year in review. In a letter, CEO Bill Maris says the firm invested in 39 companies this year and has $2.4 billion under management. For comparison, they had $1.6 billion and invested in 57 new companies last year.

At 31%, life science and health remains the most active area of investment and interest for Google Ventures. This is a continuing trend from last year where 36% of investments were in this field. According to Maris, GV will continue to invest in the health sciences moving forward:

“I’m very proud of our life science team here at GV, and this area will remain a key focus for us now and in the future. I can think of no more important mission than to improve human health and global quality of life.”

GV is also interested in making big investments in AI, machine learning, security, and other “deep technological innovations” moving into 2016. This year only 13% of the companies invested in were from this area.

The biggest loser is mobile. Last year, it made up 27% of investments and this year it did not even get a mention in their breakdown chart. What has increased is consumer investments tripling from 8% to 24%. Rounding things out is enterprise, which has stayed at around the same percentage.

GV also got a new logo and site with the help from Google Design. Ventures is one of the companies most likely to thrive from the Alphabet re-org. It allows Maris and co. to make a clearer argument to founders and entrepreneurs that they are an independent source for capital and not just Google’s acquisition arm.


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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: