YL Ventures, a San Francisco, CA- and Tel Aviv, Israel-based seed stage venture capital firm, closed its third fund, at $75m.
YLV III was over-subscribed with nearly 100% of existing investors participating, and closed 25% above its target of $60m.
The new fund, which builds on the success of its two prior funds, both of which generated returns in the top quartile of all North American Venture Capital funds according to Preqin, will invest in seed stage Israeli companies in high-growth sectors including cybersecurity, enterprise software, autonomous vehicles, drone technologies and VR/AR.
Led by Silicon Valley-based Managing Partner Yoav Andrew Leitersdorf, a serial entrepreneur and early stage investor for 25 years who founded the firm in 2007, YLV III aims to invest in two to three companies per year. Initial seed investments will be $2m-3m, with YL Ventures leading the rounds. A large portion of the fund is reserved to participate in U.S. VC-led follow-on rounds of its portfolio companies.
YLV I and II have invested in 10 companies, five of which have already been successfully acquired. Most recently, FireLayers (Cloud Access Security Broker) was acquired by Proofpoint and BlazeMeter (Performance Testing Platform for DevOps) was acquired by CA.
Current portfolio companies include Twistlock (virtual container security) which recently announced a $17m Series B funding round, Karamba Security (Autonomous Security for autonomous and connected cars); and Hexadite (security orchestration and automation).
Leitersdorf is supported by:
– Ofer Schreiber, partner, leading the Israeli office;
– Iren Reznikov, senior analyst, and
– Sharon Seemann, marketing director.
The firm, which is currently recruiting additional investment professionals to join its Silicon Valley and Tel-Aviv offices, is also expanding its leadership team with the addition of experienced venture advisors with Justin Somaini, chief security officer at SAP, a prominent security industry angel investor, board member and advisor to many security startups, and Andy Ellis, chief security officer of Akamai, being the first of them.