Two investors who backed Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA) back when the company was just starting to generate interest, teamed up to establish a $400 million fund to back startups that could potentially have a social as well as an environmental influence. The two investors - Nancy Pfund and Ira Ehrenpreis created the fund, which is part of DBL Partners, a San Francisco venture company.
DBL Partners means “Double Bottom Line”, describing a style of investing that encourages investors to back companies that create both monetary value and social value. As of today, this is the third fund from DBL and is by far the largest. DBL’s previous fund was of $150 million, and it was invested in more than 23 companies. Some very successful companies became public from the DBL funds, including including Tesla, SolarCity (NASDAQ: SCTY) and Pandora (NYSE: P).
DBL plans to invest $10 to $20 million at a time from the new fund, focusing on various sectors and industries, including healthcare, information technology and lean tech, all early stage startups. Statistically speaking, most of the startups will not get far, but those few that will have potential to generate billions and hopefully create value for society as well.