Equidate, Re-Named Forge Global, Boosts Series B to $85M
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the original holder wants to sell. All Forge investors must be wealthy enough to qualify as accredited investors who can afford the potential losses of investing in risky private shares.
Companies will sometimes allow a big buyer to acquire preferred shares directly from a VC or other investor, Rodriques says. The new investor then replaces the seller of those shares on the company’s “cap table,” or capitalization table.
In November, Forge offered another route to investing in top late-stage technology companies by spinning out an asset management arm, Equiam, which operates a fund that holds private shares in 30 pre-IPO companies including Uber, Airbnb, SpaceX, WeWork (which recently changed its name to The We Company), Lyft, Stripe, Pinterest, and Palantir Technologies. The fund is pegged to the Forge Tech30 Capped Index, which tracks current valuations of those 30 companies.
Forge, which had 14 employees in early 2018, now has a staff of about 38 people, Rodriques says. With its influx of new capital, the company plans to increase its headcount and expand marketing and product development efforts. Counting its complete Series B fundraising round of $85 million, the company’s venture fundraising now totals $89 million, he says.
Forge announced in July it had secured $50 million in a Series B fundraising round led by Financial Technology Partners (FT Partners) and Panorama Point Partners. The Series B extension round announced Tuesday, which reaped an additional $35 million, was led by German reinsurance company Munich Re, a Forge business partner.
Among Forge’s early-stage investors were Peter Thiel, Tim Draper, and Scott Banister.