Leading Israeli venture capital firm Viola Ventures has announced the closing of its sixth fund, which hit its hard cap and was oversubscribed, weighing in at $250 million. The fund’s closure has raised Viola’s total assets under management to $1.25 billion.
“It’s not only important to invest in high-performing companies but to invest in them early,” said Danny Cohen, general partner at Viola Ventures. “Our track record proves that we know how to identify outstanding teams, aggressively be the first money, and then support them to unicorn status and beyond. We are confident that our sixth fund will help grow the next generation of market leaders.”
In 2021, Israel’s tech sector broke new ground and raised an unprecedented $25b., according to a report from Startup Nation Central, a nonprofit organization that catalyzes growth opportunities by bringing Israeli tech innovation to global business and societal challenges. During the record-breaking year, Viola Ventures also shared in the success. Eight of its portfolio companies reached unicorn status, with one company, app technology developer ironSource, achieving decacorn status by going public at an $11b. valuation.
“The Israeli ecosystem has shattered its own glass ceiling reaching 60 unicorns, 33 of them in the last 12 months. Viola Ventures invested less than 0.5% of the capital deployed in Israel in 2021 and has ~15% of Israel’s total unicorns,” said Omry Ben David, general partner at Viola Ventures. “The Israeli tech ecosystem is definitely evolving. Israeli entrepreneurs have growing aspirations and we are seeing more Israeli companies going public and staying independent, thus controlling their own destiny for longer.”
With the new fund, Viola Ventures intends to continue investing in fintech, AI and deep tech, and to give attention to digital health, SaaS 3.0, cybersecurity and Web 3.0. Recently, the fund promoted then-principal Yael Alroy to partner, alongside Jeff Shapiro, another recent addition from the executive search industry.
Prof. Moshe Zviran, dean of the Coller School of Management, commented on the Start-up Nation’s meteoric growth in the last calendar year, “Money is flowing into this country. First of all because there’s a lot of money in the market, and secondly– if you look at the success of Israeli companies, you realize that there has been a kind of shift to a Scale-Up Nation.
“If you look at what’s happening in Israel, you’ll see that more and more companies have led VCs to good or excellent return on investment,” added Zviran. “This isn’t just attributed to luck. The investors realize that this is the best source for talent. Israel is known for its talent.”