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Online mortgage lender Privlo rakes in $353.8 mln

Privlo, an online mortgage lender based in Santa Monica, Calif., has received $353.8 million in funding. This amount includes $3.8 million from Spark Capital and QED Investors as well as up to $350 million in debt financing from an undisclosed New York-based private real estate investment fund.

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Cover app snags $5.5 mln

Restaurant payments app Cover has closed $5.5 million in funding, the company said in a blog post on its site. Andrew Parker of Spark Capital led the round. In addition to funding, Parker will be added to Cover’s board. To read the announcement, visit here.

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MassPRIM’s push into venture slowed last year: VCJ

The Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management’s venture portfolio includes top name funds from Union Square Ventures, Spark Capital and Index Ventures, but after stepping on the gas early this decade, the board’s pace of commitments shifted to a lower gear last year, affiliate magazine Venture Capital Journal reports.

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Spark Capital closes $375 mln for venture growth fund

According to a company spokesperson, Spark Capital has raised $375 million for its venture growth fund. Of particular interest are marketplaces, e-commerce, online networks and software companies. The average investment will range between $15 million to $30 million. Jeremy Philips is leading the fund.

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UTIMCO’s bet on young firms continues to pay off: VCJ

The University of Texas Investment Management Company’s bet on young, emerging venture firms over the past decade or so, including Union Square Ventures, Spark Capital and Foundry Group, continues to pay off, affiliate magazine Venture Capital Journal reports.

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Spark Capital leads Series B round for Sift Science

According to a blog post by Sift Science CEO and co-founder Jason Tan, the firm has recently raised $18 million in Series B funding. Spark Capital led the round. Also, Mo Koyfman, a general partner at Spark Capital, has been added to Sift Science’s board of directors. Based in San Francisco, Sift Science provides solutions that prevent e-commerce fraud. To read the announcement, visit here.

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Spark Capital and SoftBank Capital back Talkspace

Talkspace said Monday that it raised $2.5 million in funding. The investors were Spark Capital and SoftBank Capital. In addition to the funding, Ran Harnevo, AOL president of video, will join the board. Talkspace is a provider of anonymous therapy via a mobile device or online.

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Spark Capital hires new associate

According to a blog post on his Tumblr site, John Melas-Kyriazi has joined Spark Capital’s Boston office as an associate. Prior to joining the early-stage venture firm, Melas-Kyriazi was the chief financial officer of the Palo Alto, Calif-based startup StartX. To read his announcement, visit here.

CrowdRise closes financing round led by USV

CrowdRise, an online platform supporting crowdfunding projects for charitable causes has closed a $23 million financing round led by USV. Venture capital firms Spark Capital and Index Ventures are co-investors in the round along with James Packer and Brett Ratner’s RatPac venture fund, CAA Ventures and United Talent Agency’s venture fund.

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Fund performance: NEA and Austin show solid improvement in WSIB portfolio: VCJ

A generation of venture capital funds now reaching middle age is clearly benefiting from the business’ up-cycle, affiliate magazine Venture Capital Journal reports. This is apparent in the Washington State Investment Board’s Pathway and Invesco portfolios, where funds from the 2006 to 2008 vintages are turning in solid performances.

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Spark Capital leads Series A round for Storefront

Storefront said Monday that it has closed $7.3 million in Series A funding. Spark Capital led the round with participation from investors that included Mohr Davidow Ventures, Great Oaks Venture Capital, 500 Startups, Box Group, SV Angel and Vikram Pandit. In addition to the funding, Mo Koyfman has been added to Storefront’s board. Storefront is an online marketplace that helps designers and artists find retail space to sell their products.

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Distributions from Union Square and Spark spiked last year: VCJ

Distributions from Union Square Ventures’ debut 2004 fund and Spark Capital’s initial 2005 fund spiked last year, perhaps not surprisingly, according to a recent Washington State Investment Board portfolio report, affiliate magazine Venture Capital Journal says.

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Online home decor retailer Wayfair grabs $157 mln

Wayfair said Friday that it has closed $157 million in Series B financing. T. Rowe Price Associates led the round with participation from TripAdvisor CFO Julie M.B. Bradley. Headquartered in Boston, Wayfair is an online retailer of home furnishings and decor. Its backers include Battery Ventures, Spark Capital, HarbourVest Partners and Great Hill Partners.

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