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State fund announces $1.6 million high-tech venture capital deal

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A New Mexico high-tech venture capital fund, NMA Ventures, will receive up to $1.6 million from the state’s Catalyst Fund to invest in local startups.

NMA Ventures funds early-stage, high-technology companies based in New Mexico. It was created in 2017 by three New Mexico angel investors: John Chavez, Dorian Rader and Sherman McCorkle.

In announcing the deal, Gov. Susana Martinez said that the $1.6 million from the Catalyst Fund will be added to $2.6 million already held by NMA Ventures, which brings the total potential investment in New Mexico startups up to $4.2 million.

The Catalyst Fund invests in emerging venture capital funds throughout the state. These venture capital funds invest in seed and early-stage technology companies. The Catalyst Fund is expected to support more than 50 companies in New Mexico. Sun Mountain Capital is the manager of the Catalyst Fund.

The Catalyst Fund totals $20 million — $10 million in public funds allocated by the State Investment Council, $5 million from the State Small Business Credit Initiative and $5 million in commitments from private institutional investors. Portfolio funds which receive investment from the Catalyst Fund must provide private investment that at least matches the Catalyst Fund contribution.

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