Juno Deal Drives Standout Quarter for VC Investment in Seattle

1/17/14Follow @bromano

Venture capitalists invested $893.4 million in Seattle-area companies last year, the most since 2007, according to the latest MoneyTree Report.

The fourth quarter in particular was a standout with $485.2 million invested—more than half the year’s total—in 36 deals, thanks largely to the $120 million Series A round raised by cancer immunotherapy company Juno Therapeutics, according to the report, prepared by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association, based on data from Thomson Reuters.

That total was the eighth-largest sum for a single quarter going back to 1995. The largest was the first quarter of 2000, when 75 local companies raised $839.6 million at the peak of the dot-com bubble.

Other big deals from the fourth quarter include Redfin’s $50 million raise; a $48.5 million round for Immune Design, another cancer immunotherapy company; and $30.8 million for Chef Software (formerly known as Opscode).

Nineteen software and IT services companies raised $192 million in the quarter, accounting for 39.6 percent of the capital invested. (Software remained the dominant industry category for venture capital investment nationally in 2013.) Biotechnology, healthcare services, and medical devices companies raised $191.3 million across eight Seattle-area deals, again buoyed by the very large investment in Juno Therapeutics, which grew $25 million larger this month when Bezos Expeditions—Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’s investment vehicle—and Venrock joined the funding round.

For the full year, the MoneyTree report counts 117 investment deals done by 98 local companies.

Benjamin Romano is editor of Xconomy Seattle. Email him at bromano [at] xconomy.com. Follow @bromano

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