Responding to a steep sell-off in technology stocks, some hedge funds and other investment firms with large public stock portfolios have been turning away from investing in the most mature startups, reducing what’s been a crucial source of funding for the better part of two years. Instead they are focusing on buying beaten-down public tech stocks or investing in younger startups.
Tiger Global Management told its investors in a webinar earlier this month that it would no longer focus on backing large, late-stage startups preparing to go public, said a person with direct knowledge of the discussion. Instead, partner Scott Shleifer said the New York hedge fund would focus on investing in younger firms in Series A and B rounds, the person added. Shleifer did not elaborate on the reason behind the shift in strategy, but it followed the sharp decline in tech stocks over the past three months.
Other hedge funds including D1 Capital Partners, which invested in dozens of startup deals in the past couple of years, and smaller firms such as Octahedron Capital also have slowed down the pace of new late-stage private investments, according to three people with direct knowledge of the matter. These firms, also known as crossover funds, are instead focusing on buying shares of public tech companies that have sunk in value compared to the all-time highs they traded at last year.