MassVentures was founded in 1978 when there were fewer than 20 venture capital firms in the world. Formerly known as the Massachusetts Technology Development Corporation (MTDC), MassVentures was established as a quasi-public corporation by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to address the capital gap for start-up companies and to encourage the growth of early-stage technology firms. Our enabling and governing legislation is Chapter 40G of Massachusetts General Laws as amended in 1993 and 2002.
Our initial funding came from a $2 million grant awarded by the Economic Development Administration (“EDA”), a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce. These funds were used to establish a revolving loan fund for Massachusetts companies with operations involving a significant amount of technology, located in an “EDA” eligible area.
In 1981, the EDA awarded MassVentures an additional $1 million for a second revolving loan fund to assist in the creation and development of small, innovative, high-technology companies in Massachusetts, and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts provided $1 million in matching funds.
Each year from 1982 to 1988 the Commonwealth appropriated additional funds totaling $4.2 million, enabling MassVentures to create its first venture capital fund, called the Traditional Fund.
This Fund is operated as an “evergreen fund” which uses gains realized from past investments as the primary source of funds for its operations and investments.
The legislature appropriated $5 million to MassVentures as part of the 2004 Economic Stimulus Bill and $2.5 million as part of the 2006 Economic Stimulus Bill.