October 18-20 | Tucson, AZ

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More mutual funds are investing in tech start-ups

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October 18-20, 2023 / Tucson, AZ
The annual summit for research institution gap fund and accelerator programs, including proof of concept programs, startup accelerators, and university venture funds

The Story

Mutual fund giants aren’t just interested in putting money to work in publicly traded companies. Increasingly, they also want to own a piece of red-hot start-ups.

Tech news site Re/code reported that Fidelity Investments is now in talks to buy a stake in meal-delivery start-up Blue Apron at a valuation of about $2 billion. But Fidelity isn’t alone.

Analysts at CB Insights recently looked at deal trends among five mutual-fund firms—BlackRock, Fidelity Investments, Janus Capital, T. Rowe Price, and Wellington Management. As the analysts note, outside of Janus, last year was the biggest ever for start-up deals for each of the firms, which completed six to 16 U.S. deals each.

For instance, after no U.S. tech deals in 2013, Wellington Management jumped into 12 deals, including a $71 million investment into real estate tech platform Redfin and a $40 million round into cybersecurity company Veracode.

T. Rowe Price doubled its number of private tech deals into venture-backed start-ups in 2014.

Fidelity, Janus, BlackRock and Wellington did not immediately return a request for comment.

In a statement to CNBC, T. Rowe Price emphasized that the company has always invested in “promising emerging growth companies” that can potentially add long-term value for clients.

The company said it pursues a thorough assessment of the prospects and past performance of the company, which typically includes meetings with management and a review of company financial information.

via More mutual funds are investing in tech start-ups.

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