Venture fund raising in the U.S. hit its highest level since 2001 in the second quarter of this year.

New figures from the VentureOne show that venture capitalists raised $6.07 billion in the three months ending June 30. That’s the best quarter since the $8.58 billion raised in the fourth quarter of 2001.

In 2003, venture funds brought in $9.16 billion for the entire year.

Three funds raised more than $500 million, including Menlo Ventures ($1.2 billion).
So far this year, funds have convinced investors to place $9.43 billion.

The second-quarter total was 164 percent higher than the same quarter in 2004.

“After two years of slow down, 2004 ($17.82 billion) proved to be a significant year for fund raising, and it appears that the growth is continuing apace in 2005,” said John Gabbert, vice president of worldwide research at VentureOne. “While the second quarter of this year saw the closing of some larger funds, a significant amount of interest still remains for smaller funds as well. More than 40 percent of the funds raised in the first half of the year have been for funds that are smaller than $100 million.”

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