New York State Teachers’ pension eyes pledge to Lightspeed Ventures


Lightspeed Venture Partners, which recently launched its next round of fundraising, is on track to receive commitments from the New York State Teachers’ Retirement System.

The pension system’s executive director/chief investment officer Thomas Lee approved a commitment of up to $35 million to Lightspeed Venture Partners X. That commitment is expected to close in the first quarter. Lee also approved a commitment of up to $25 million to Lightspeed Venture Partners Select Fund I – that pledge also is expected to close in the first quarter, according to public meeting materials from the system.

The system, which had total net assets of $95.4 billion as of June 30, 2013, is completing due diligence on the funds, which is why they’ve haven’t received final approval.

Lightspeed is raising two funds – one that will target early-stage investments, and another that will focus on growth opportunities, sources told peHUB in prior interviews. The two funds together could seek a total of $800 million, the sources said.

Lightspeed declined to comment.

The New York system committed $150 million to private equity funds in the fourth quarter, and has another $285 million in commitments under consideration, according to the latest investment report.

New York State Teachers committed up to $25 million to FirstMark Capital III, up to $25 million to General Catalyst VII and up to $100 million to GTCR XI, the report said.

Venture firm FirstMark Capital closed its third fund on $225 million in November. General Catalyst closed its seventh fund in December on $675 million, while GTCR recently held a final close on its eleventh fund well over target, on $3.85 billion.

The system’s investment staff also is performing due diligence on Energy Capital Partners III, targeting $3.5 billion, to which a commitment of $125 million was given preliminary approval on Dec. 30 by the investment committee; and CVC Capital Partners Asia Pacific IV, also targeting $3.5 billion, to which a commitment of up to $100 million was given approval by CIO Lee.

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