Vancouver-based startup Hiive has secured $4.2 million in fresh capital for its innovative marketplace, facilitating the trading of shares in privately held venture-backed firms on the secondary market. Established in 2021, Hiive’s mission is to “unleash the full potential of the private markets” by creating an automated platform for private share transactions. It utilizes bid, ask, and trade prices provided directly by verified buyers and sellers on its platform to deliver precise, real-time valuations for late-stage startups, mirroring the methodology employed in public market valuations.
This funding infusion coincides with a period when numerous late-stage technology companies are choosing to remain private for extended periods, due to a general slowdown in the tech market. This has led to an increased demand from investors and employees seeking to liquidate their shares.
Salil Deshpande, General Partner at Uncorrelated Ventures, remarked, “Many funds are active secondary buyers, and with IPO markets being choppy or companies just choosing to stay private longer, there are many more secondary sellers.”
Hiive’s platform allows users to monitor the fluctuation of a private company’s stock, similar to public stocks. As of the previous month, the platform hosted open offerings valued at approximately $1.9 billion, with over 570 companies actively listed, including Seattle-based startups Outreach, Icertis, and Convoy. Hiive boasts more than 12,000 users, including over 1,000 institutional members.
Over the past year, the startup has witnessed substantial growth, increasing its rate and volume of transaction completion by around six times. It competes with other private market share platforms like EquityZen and Birel.
Hiive generates revenue by imposing a minimum fixed dollar amount and a commission on transactions facilitated through its platform.
CEO Sim Desai, formerly a Managing Director at Toronto-based investment bank Setter Capital, leads Hiive. The company was co-founded by Prab Rattan, Stuart Eccles, and Sarah Huggins. In the course of its expansion, Hiive has expanded its workforce from six employees at the beginning of 2022 to a current count of 45.
Uncorrelated Ventures spearheaded the funding round, with contributions from Splash Capital, Harmony Venture Partners, Hack VC, Agmen Capital, and Renaud Laplanche, co-founder of Lending Club. Hiive has disclosed a post-money valuation of $77 million.