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UCAN Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Record Quarter

Charlie Banks
Charlie Banks
Last updated: June 6, 2024
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Thanks to all our friends - like Bauknight, Pietras & Stormer, the Upstate Business Journal, and others - who helped us celebrate...

Greenville, S.C. – The Upstate Carolina Angel Network (UCAN) recently celebrated its 10th anniversary with the grand opening of its new headquarters – and a record-setting month for investments and returns. 

UCAN launched in the Spring of 2008 to provide capital and expertise to early stage ventures in the Southeast, and since then the group has expanded under the VentureSouth brand to include a dozen angel groups across the Carolinas.  Over the last ten years, more than 300 investors in the group have invested over $28 million in 61 companies, with roughly half the companies and 60% of the dollars invested in South Carolina. 

UCAN’s Founding Managing Director, Matt Dunbar, added, “Over the last 10 years, we have been proud to be part of the growth of the startup ecosystem in Greenville and the region.  Our members have helped support startups tackling tough challenges across a range of industries, and those companies have gone on to raise over $350 million of additional capital, employ over 1000 people, and create strong investment returns for our investors.”  He added, “It has been rewarding to work with entrepeneurs and our investors to accomplish our objectives to make money, have fun and do good.” 

As part of UCAN’s anniversary celebration, the group announced its second portfolio company acquisition for the year, which generated a 9.5x initial return in just over two years, generating a 180% annualized rate of return. Earlier this year, FarmShots was acquired by Syngenta yielding a 50% annualized rate of return.

In addition to strong returns for investors, UCAN and VentureSouth continue to invest at a record pace.  The groups have invested $3.7 million this quarter in 8 new and existing portfolio companies.  Those investments include Proterra, the Greenville-based electric bus manufacturer, 6AM City, a Greenville-based media company and Atlas Organics, the Spartanburg-based collector and composter of food waste.   

To learn more about UCAN and how to be part of its second decade of angel investing, please join us here.