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12 January 2012

Washington gains W Fund boost

The W Fund plans to invest $250,000 to $500,000 in about 25 to 30 early-stage companies over the next five years, focusing efforts on upstarts that have strong ties to research universities in the state, GeekWire said.

Author: James Mawson

The US-based University of Washington has received $5m from the country's Department of Commerce to invest in the state's start-ups through the W Fund.

The W Fund is expected to open next month with about $25m in commitments, according to news provider GeekWire. The W Fund plans to invest $250,000 to $500,000 in about 25 to 30 early-stage companies over the next five years, focusing efforts on upstarts that have strong ties to research universities in the state, GeekWire added. The university students will do the initial due diligence on potential deals before a 20-person committee makes the final investment decision.

Among those participating in the W Fund's investment committee are Madrona Venture Group's Greg Gottesman and Tom Alberg; OVP Venture Partners' Chad Waite and Lucinda Stewart; former Microsoft vice presidents Brian Arbogast and Will Poole; Arch Venture Partners' Steve Gillis; biotechnology entrepreneur Bruce Montgomery; Cardiac Science chief executive Dave Marver; Intellectual Ventures' Patrick Ennis; and former GE executive Lonnie Edelheit.

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