YL Ventures closes $75M fund targeted at seed stage Israeli entrepreneurs

Silicon Valley-based VC firm, YL Ventures, has closed a $75 million fund targeted at seed stage Israeli startups focused on high-growth sectors including cybersecurity, enterprise software, autonomous vehicles, drone technologies and VR/AR. The new fund, YLV III, according to the firm was over-subscribed with nearly 100 percent of existing YLV II investors participating. The target was to raise $60 million. YLV III aims to invest in two to three companies per year. Initial seed investments will be $2-3 million, with YL Ventures leading the rounds. A large portion of the fund is reserved to participate in US VC-led follow-on rounds of its portfolio companies. Serial entrepreneur and YL Ventures’ Managing Partner Yoav Andrew Leitersdorf will be heading the new fund. Ofer Schreiber, Partner at the firm, will be leading the Israeli office. The VC firm is currently recruiting additional investment professionals to join its Silicon Valley and Tel Aviv offices. Leitersdorf attributes the heightened interest in YLV III to soaring cybersecurity spending, expected to exceed $202 billion in 2021, and the deep domain expertise and experience in cybersecurity that Israeli entrepreneurs possess, most of who graduated from the IDF’s intelligence units. “For YL Ventures, this convergence represents an opportunity to address evolving security risks and leverage Israel’s unique talent pool to meet mounting global demand for the most effective solutions,” said Leitersdorf.
“Israel is a well-known powerhouse for cybersecurity and related technological innovation. We are able to harness that expertise to expand into new sectors that leverage artificial intelligence, machine learning, computer vision, big data and robotics, all of which are highly relevant to our new fund. While remaining extremely selective, we can vet ideas fast, devote substantial attention to helping our companies scale, and provide a lot of value post-investment.”

Expansion of team at YL Ventures

YL Ventures is also expanding its leadership team with the addition of a number of high-caliber and experienced venture advisors. Justin Somaini, Chief Security Officer at SAP, is the first of these. Somaini said, “I’ve been collaborating with YL Ventures for some years now and know they have unparalleled access to Israeli cybersecurity talent and innovation,” he said. “I’m looking forward with great anticipation to working more closely with the entrepreneurs the fund selects to help them bring the next wave of technological innovation to market.” Based in both Silicon Valley and Tel Aviv, the firm has early and deep access to the Israeli entrepreneurial ecosystem as well as an active presence and strong network in the US.

Abhinav Mohapatra

An author who has a keen interest for the ‘off-beat’ <!--more-->An author who has a keen interest for the ‘off-beat’, he has covered and explored multiple facets of the marketing, advertising

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