Zynga investor trades in Dogs for Mad Men

Oct 05, 2010

The Foundry Group, a Colorado-based VC firm known for investments in companies like Zynga and StockTwits, today will announce that it has closed its second fund with $225 million in capital commitments. It's also changing up what I once called "the best VC firm website ever."

First, the money: Foundry was launched in late 2006, out of the ashes of Mobius Venture Capital. It went out seeking to raise $175 million for its debut fund, with a focus on early-stage IT, software and Internet companies. Despite its first-time fund status, the team's track record -- including that of the ubiquitous Brad Feld -- helped it secure $225 million from groups like  Guardian Life, Parish Capital, Morgan Stanley and UTIMCO.

And it seems to have been a smart investment. Just take a look at the latest performance data from UTIMCO. Through May 31, Foundry's fund has the single best IRR (internal rate of return) of any other fund in UTIMCO's entire private equity portfolio, at a whopping 63.67%.  I'd assume that a lot of that figure is driven by Zynga, but not all of it.

Foundry opted to target $225 million for the first fund, and held fast despite significant oversubscription. No significant changes in investment strategy, and the team also remains intact (save for original partner Chris Wand, who left more than a year ago).

Now onto the website: After Wand left, Foundry opted to redesign its website with a Reservoir Dogs motif (below left). And, unlike a similar photo attempt by Blackstone Group execs, Foundry pulled it off.

To commemorate their new fund, the firm today has dropped the Dogs in favor of the Mad Men. It looks right -- I can barely recognize Feld or Don Draper-clone Jason Mendelson (far right) -- and I know the show has its legions of fans (you should see Fortune.com's pageviews for Mad Men-related posts). Unfortunately, I'm not one of them. So I'll keep the old site in my heart, while I await what Foundry comes up with for Fund III:



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