Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Google, owner of the world's most popular search engine, has started a venture-capital unit to fund new technologies as it looks for fresh revenue sources.
Google Ventures will invest $100 million in its first year and mostly target young companies, Bill Maris, a managing partner of the unit, said in an interview. The fund will invest in areas such as consumer-oriented Internet companies, health care, robotics and nanotechnology, he said.
The unit may help Google tap technologies that benefit the company's business, said Rich Miner, also a managing partner of the venture.
The announcement comes at a challenging time for venture capital firms. Fundraising in the industry in the United States fell 71 percent last quarter, according to the National Venture Capital Association.
Google rose $5.37, or 1.6 percent, to close yesterday at $348.06.