>> Russian venture capital funds are increasingly setting up shop in Silicon Valley, despite mounting tensions with the US since the 2016 presidential election. And they aren't making a secret about it, says Reuter's reporter Heather Summerville.>> There are a number of venture capital funds in Silicon Valley that are led by Russians, but have decided to go overseas to start their venture capital funds.
One it's much better to be in the same time zone as the companies that you wanna invest in. Also because with growing tensions between the US and Russia, it's been a lot harder for venture capital funds that are in Russia to deploy their money overseas.>> The latest is Masha Drokova, this 28 year old was once a spokeswoman for a Kremlin supported youth group numbering some 100,000, and an avid Putin follower.
Her fund Day One Ventures, is based in San Francisco and investing in tech startups, she's not in politics anymore and doesn't feel hampered by her past.>> It's a part of my life experience and has been very much in the past more than eight years ago. I think it was a very interesting experience and helped me to understand people better.
>> Drokova says the money invested in her fund comes from investors all over the world. But several Russian venture capital firms in Silicon Valley tell Reuter's, the bulk of their funding still comes from wealthy Russians.>> Fortross Ventures, which some of its money comes from a state owned Russian bank, the majority of its funds comes from Russian investors.
They did a significant investment into Uber in 2016, another firm called Flint Capital, it's run by Russian, they don't live in Russia, but they're all Russian born. They did a sizable investment into Lending Club, which is the fintech company that went public a couple years ago.>> And despite the challenges a Russian passport brings in the US these days.
One Russian born investor estimates Russian money coming through Silicon Valley based funds have tripled in the last three years.