Detroit Venture Partners grows fund to $50M

Detroit Venture Partners closed its initial round of funding for its first investment vehicle this spring, netting $28 million. But now the leadership at the downtown Detroit-based venture capital firm says its first fund will easily top $50 million when it's all said and done.

"We already have capital committed well beyond $28 million," says Jake Cohen, partner with Detroit Venture Partners. He adds that so far $16 million of that has been deployed and the firm still has a number of investments in the pipeline, including some that will be made before the end of the year.

The 2-year-old firm is the VC arm of the Quicken Loans family of companies. It focuses on making early stage investments in tech startups. Detroit Venture Partners' founding partners also include Dan Gilbert, Josh Linkner and Brian Hermelin. The company currently employes nine full-time employees and 10 summer interns. It has hired three people over the last year, including a new partner, an analyst and an administrative employee.

Detroit Venture Partners is the anchor investment firm in the M@dison Building in downtown Detroit and has attracted a number of its portfolio companies. It has made more than 20 investments and more than 60 percent of those startups are based in Detroit. Some of its recent investments include Chalkfly, iRule, Ginkgotree and LevelEleven.

"I am sure by the end of the year we will have made more investments," Cohen says. He adds that he expects the portfolio companies to be on a 3-5 year growth curve before recording an exit. The fund's oldest investments are only two years old so exits are still a ways off.

Source: Jake Cohen, partner with Detroit Venture Partners
Writer: Jon Zemke

Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.
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