Before it crashes, Silicon Valley Bank was known to many startups and venture capitalists as the place to put their money or take out a line of capital. But for emerging managers, it was more than just a financial institution.
Several emerging managers have told TechCrunch+ that SVB has been instrumental in helping them build their business from the ground up. It also provided them with support to help them build networks and feel included in the venture capital ecosystem despite their size. After the bank collapse and the ensuing chaos, many wondered if the things they loved most about SVB would continue.
Unlike many of their banking competitors – other than the equally business-friendly First Republic Bank – SVB was designed to work with people from the business community; it had options for smaller funds that other banks did not have.
Nisha Desai, CEO and managing partner of Andav Capital, said SVB was a natural choice for emerging managers like her because she didn’t have the account minimums – or net worth requirements – that many others banks had. These types of limits often restrict early funds. Additionally, SVB offered capital lines to these smaller funds, allowing them to start building their track records while they were still fundraising.
“They gave you capital to go ahead and invest in businesses with your new funds,” Desai said. “It was helpful. Obviously it wasn’t rolled out to everyone, but it got new managers off the ground.
But emerging managers said while back-end banking got them involved with SVB in the first place, its commitment to emerging managers is what prompted them to pursue the relationship.