Dealflow | April 8, 2019

New Era closes $60 million fund for impact-driven tech companies

Jessica Pothering
ImpactAlpha Editor

Jessica Pothering

ImpactAlpha, April 8 – Tel Aviv- and Boston-based venture capital firm New Era Capital Partners launched last year to invest in early-stage and revenue earning tech startups. It has raised $60 million from its first fund. New Era did not disclose the names of its investors, which it says include international corporations and financial institutions.

New Era firm doesn’t call itself an impact investor, but it says it evaluates investments based on positive ESG (environmental, social and governance) criteria. “There is complete congruence between the commercial success of a company and the manner in which it relates to its employees, its customers and its environment,” New Era’s Ran Simha said in a statement.

The company has made six investments, according to its website, including Hyliion, which makes battery systems that allow any fuel-powered commercial trucks to be converted to hybrid vehicles; Optibus, which makes software for planning and managing mass transit systems; and Twine, which has developed waterless technology for dying thread for use in textiles.

New Era was founded by Simha, who previously served as an economic advisor to the late former president of Israel, Shimon Peres. He also worked for Peres’ private consulting firm, Peres & Associates, and has worked for several investment firms, including a hedge fund managed by Israeli-based Psagot, which manages roughly 182 billion Israeli shekels ($35 billion) in client money.

New Era’s other founders are Gideon Argov, who has spent most of his career with equipment and manufacturing companies, like aircraft parts supplier Beechcraft and semiconductor components company Entegris, and Ayelet Frish, who worked with Simha at Peres & Associates. The firm has also brought on Leehe Skuler from Social Finance Israel to serve as its head of impact.