VC Fundraising Has Best Start Since 2001

The U.S. venture-capital industry had its best fund-raising start since 2001 as three firms dominated, Thomson Reuters and the National Venture Capital Association said Monday.

Thirty-six U.S. venture-capital funds raised more than $7 billion in the first quarter of 2011. That’s up 76 percent, by dollar commitments, compared with the first quarter of 2010, which saw 44 funds raise $4 billion, according to Thomson Reuters and the NVCA.

Bessemer Venture Partners VIII raised $1.6 billion during the quarter, while Sequoia Capital 2010 raised $1.3 billion and J.P. Morgan’s (JPM 46.97, +0.13, +0.28%) Digital Growth Fund raised $1.2 billion.

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