Benchmark is an American venture capital firm with a high-profile portfolio. Numerous major and highly successful startups have enjoyed early-stage funding from Benchmark, including Uber, Dropbox, Twitter, Instagram, Quora, Discord and Snapchat.
Benchmark is known for its cash injection into eBay in 1997, which increased the company’s worth to over US$5 billion in only two years.
Overview of Benchmark
Launched in 1995, Benchmark created the first profit-sharing structure that provides equal ownership and compensation for all partners, regardless of whether they are junior or senior. There is also no single person occupying an autonomous leadership role such as CEO, president or MD. Benchmark operates with six full-time partners, who share all profits and benefits equally. The founders of Benchmark are Bob Kagle, who is a marketing expert, Andy Rachleff, a network and telecommunication specialist, Bruce Dunlevie, a venture capital specialist, and Kevin Harvey who is an experienced database software investor.
Benchmark has offices in Menlo Park, California and San Francisco, California. The company makes substantial investments locally and overseas, particularly in Europe and France.
Technology company funding deals have been booming in France since 2012. By 2016 the country achieved a massive US$1.5 billion in funding to technology companies. In the same year, the French startup Zenly raised over US$22.5 million in a single season from a group of investors, with Benchmark as lead investor.
What made this deal especially interesting was that Benchmark made the investment directly into Zenly. The funding raised by Benchmark for Zenly was widely publicized in tech media, but what is not well known throughout the industry is that this was not the first major investment Benchmark made in Europe during 2016. Before backing Zenly, Benchmark had already invested US$13 million in the Berlin-based Contentful, and US$40 million into Citymapper in London.
Media coverage reports that after the backing of Zenly was received, the French company hired additional employees to raise the staff complement to 35, and began plans to open offices in San Francisco.
More Companies in the Americas
GP Investments is a Brazilian alternative investment company with a focus on technology investments. Learn about the company’s history and find out about its most significant investments.
Socialatom Ventures is a seed capital firm founded by entrepreneur and investor Andrés Barreto. The company invests in global tech startups located across the Americas and are pioneers in the recent entrepreneurial ecosystem development in Latin America.
Avalon Ventures is an early stage venture capital fund particularly focused on making investments in information technology, biotechnology, healthcare, pharmaceutical, venture capital and life sciences.
Princeville Capital is a US-based investment company which is focused on growth-stage technology companies.
Founders Fund is a leading VC firm that has been involved in the early stages of some of the most important fintech developments of the past two decades.
Redpoint Ventures, an American investment firm that invests in local industry giants as well as a variety of companies in South America, particularly in Brazil and Colombia.
SoftBank Capital, a top US-based investment company involved in all investment stages, with focus on technology, mobile telecommunications, and SaaS.
XponentialWorks is a venture capital firm based in California. Read about the company’s history and investments.
WIND Ventures is a Corporate Capital Venture focusing on start-ups and scale-ups in new mobility, eco energy, and retail, to boost their growth in Latin America.
Investors in the Americas
James Hare is an investor and entrepreneur with a strong interest in technology, particularly machine learning, digital platforms and e-commerce.
Reid Hoffman is an American Internet entrepreneur and investor, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of LinkedIn. He is also a Partner at Greylock Partners, a venture capital company.
Avi Reichental is an intrepid investor, digital manufacturing expert and thought leader, driven by the desire to invest in the technologies of tomorrow.
Charlie Songhurst is a US-based but British-born individual angel and advisor who has personally invested in around 500 companies throughout his career, predominantly in Europe.
Max Levchin, co-founder of PayPal, is a Ukrainian-American software engineer and businessman known for making early investments in emerging technology companies.
Innovation and free thinking are guiding principles for Paul Buchheit. His work at Y Combinator and the many angel investments which he nurtures are a testimony to his application of these principles in daily life.
Val Babajov is a US-based serial angel investor and entrepreneur. He is the founder and managing partner of VoiVoda Ventures and the founder and president of SoftAvail, Inc. and an angel investor with Band of Angels, one of the original groups of angel investors in Silicon Valley.
Eduardo Saverin, the Brazilian investor and entrepreneur who co-founded Facebook. Find out more about his life and read about the other significant investments he has made.
Jocelyn Goldfein is the managing director at Zetta Venture Partners. Read more about her investments and ventures.