Facebook, Groupon investor Accel raises $1.35B

Accel Partners, the firm whose recent successes have put it in the top tier of the venture capital industry, just announced that it has raised two new funds — $475 million for its eleventh venture fund and $875 million for its second growth fund.

Most famously, Accel was one of the first investors in Facebook, a deal that put partner Jim Breyer (pictured) at the number one spot on Forbes’ most recent Midas List of top VCs. The firm was also an investor in Groupon, which recently filed for a $750 million initial public offering. More recently, Accel backed Rovio, the company behind the mobile gaming hit Angry Birds. There have been many other impressive companies in its portfolio, but I’ll stop there.

Accel previously raised $520 million for its tenth venture fund and $480 million for its first growth fund. In the announcement, the firm highlights its unusual strategy for growth investments — rather than just jumping on the bandwagon for a company that has already raised plenty of venture funding, Accel’s growth investments are usually mature, cashflow-positive companies that have not raised any venture capital. In fact, the firm says it was the first institutional investor in 75 percent of its growth deals.

Over the past 12 months, Accel says, it has made more than 25 seed investments, 14 early-stage investments, and eight growth investments.

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