Social Capital (venture capital)

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Social Capital
IndustryVenture capital
Founded2011; 10 years ago (2011)
FounderChamath Palihapitiya
HeadquartersPalo Alto, California, United States
Key people
Ray Ko, Steve Trieu, Andrew Artz, Jay Zaveri
WebsiteOfficial website Edit this at Wikidata

Social Capital, formerly known as Social+Capital Partnership, is a venture capital firm based in Palo Alto, California. The firm specializes in technology startups, providing seed funding, venture capital and private equity.[1][2]

The firm has "stood out strategically", according to Fortune, "with a focus on ... healthcare, financial services and education ... when those fields were ... neglected by the VC community."[1]


Social Capital was founded in 2011 by Chamath Palihapitiya, who had previously worked at Facebook.[1] Mamoon Hamid and Ted Maidenberg also joined the firm that year as General Partners.[3][4]

In January 2015, Fortune reported that Kleiner Perkins was in acquisition talks with Social Capital,[5] but the acquisition reportedly fell through.[6] In May 2015, Social Capital raised $600 million in their third and largest venture capital fund.[1] PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel praised Palihapitiya's approach, and as of 2015 served as a limited partner.[7][8]

In 2017, Marc Mezvinsky joined Social Capital as vice chairman as it sought to expand beyond traditional venture capital.[9]

In August 2017, Hamid left Social Capital to join Kleiner Perkins as a general partner and managing member.[10]

In spring of 2018, Mezvinsky departed Social Capital. Later in 2018, then-partners Arjun Sethi, Jonathan Hsu, and Ted Maidenberg left the firm to co-found Tribe Capital.[11]


Social Capital invested in Yammer in 2011, which was later bought by Microsoft.[7] In 2012, the firm invested in Impermium, which was acquired by Google in 2014.[12] Also in 2012, the firm was a venture investor in InstaEDU, acquired by Chegg in 2014. Social Capital led a round of Series B funding for Wave Accounting.

In May 2015, the firm was a leading investor in a funding round for Slack Technologies.[13]

Through 2016 and 2017, the firm led several investments in climate-related companies Aclima,[14] UrbanFootprint,[15] and DroneSeed,[16] and space technology companies Swarm Technologies[17] and Relativity Space.[18]

In 2018, the firm co-led a $22.7 million round of funding for SFOX, a cryptocurrency trading platform, alongside former peers at Tribe Capital.[11]

In September 2020, their SPAC IPOB merged with Opendoor Technologies with an market cap of $4.8 billion.[19]


  1. ^ a b c d Rao, Leena. "Is Social+Capital's Chamath Palihapitiya the future of venture capital?". Fortune. Fortune. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  2. ^ de la MERCED, MICHAEL J. "Silicon Valley Investment Funds Still Lack Diversity, Study Shows". New York Times. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  3. ^ Arrington, Michael (2011-06-03). "Facebook VP Chamath Palihapitiya Forms New Venture Fund, The Social+Capital Partnership". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2013-04-23.
  4. ^ Kim, Eugene. "These Two Charts Explain Why Kleiner Perkins Wanted To Buy This Four-Year-Old VC Firm". Business Insider. Business Insider. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  5. ^ Primack, Dan (January 26, 2015). "Exclusive: Kleiner Perkins tried to 'acquire' Social+Capital Partnership". Fortune. Retrieved July 8, 2015.
  6. ^ Lynley, Matthew (March 31, 2015). "Why The Kleiner Perkins-Social+Capital Deal Fell Apart". TechCrunch. Retrieved July 8, 2015.
  7. ^ a b Bennett, Drake (2012-07-26). "Social+Capital, the League of Extraordinarily Rich Gentlemen". Retrieved 2013-04-23.
  8. ^ Bennett, Drake. "Social+Capital, the League of Extraordinarily Rich Gentlemen". Bloomberg. Bloomberg. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  9. ^ Chelsea Clinton's Husband Joins Silicon Valley Firm Social Capital
  10. ^ Mamoon Hamid to Join Kleiner Perkins as General Partner
  11. ^ a b Verhage, Julie (16 August 2018). "Former Social Capital Partners Make First Investment Since Exit". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  12. ^ Shontell, Alyson. "That Big Round Ex-Yahoos Were Raising? It Closed And Here Are The Details". Business Insider. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  13. ^ Jeff Bercovici (December 2015). "Slack Is Our Company of the Year. Here's Why Everybody's Talking About It". Inc. Retrieved February 7, 2018.
  14. ^ Natasha Lomas. "Aclima sucks in $24M to scale its air quality mapping platform". Techcrunch.
  15. ^ Adele Peters. "This SimCity-Like Tool Lets Urban Planners See The Potential Impact Of Their Ideas". Fast Company.
  16. ^ Devin Coldewey. "That night, a forest flew". Techcrunch.
  17. ^ Aaron Pressman. "Satellite Startup Swarm Raises $25 Million For Space-Based Internet Plan". Fortune.
  18. ^ Boyle, Alan. "Relativity Space lifts the curtain on its plan to make rockets with robotic 3-D printer". GeekWire.
  19. ^ Staff, Reuters (2020-09-15). "Opendoor to go public in Social Capital merger in $4.8 billion deal". Reuters. Retrieved 2021-02-09.

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