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Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers may kick off a fund dedicated to cloud computing companies, according to a Bloomberg news report.
Depending on what numbers you believe, cloud is a big opportunity that nearly every VC, including Kleiner Perkins, is already attacking. Market Research Media expects the cloud computing category to grow at 30 percent CAGR and will hit $270 billion worldwide in 2020.
Bloomberg quoted Kleiner Perkins partner Matt Murphy saying the partners are “intrigued by the idea” of such a fund. Whether they actually follow through on the notion, the company has already backed a number of cloud startups. It most recently participated in a $20 million C Series round for AppDynamics , an application performance management company which Murphy said was well suited for cloud computing environments. The firm also staked big-time cloud-based game maker Zynga(s znga) and Groupon(s grpn.)
Given that most startups claim some sort of cloud computing angle, it’s hard to tell anymore what is not a cloud company but some try. Last month, researcher CB Insights estimated that cloud companies represented at least a quarter of all VC web investment deals.
At that time, CB Insights Co-Founder Jonathan Sherry there was “steady uptick of venture investment into cloud-based software and services [in 2011]. In Q4, cloud-based companies comprised 26.5% of internet deal volume and 34.5% of internet investment dollars. Dollar share skewed higher than deal share due to mega deals including Dropbox and Box.net.”
It probably helped Kleiner’s cloud appetite that Michael Abbott joined the company as senior partner in January. Abbott was formerly VP of engineering for Twitter. KPCB currently categorizes its investments in four focus areas: Greentech, China, digital and life sciences.
It doesn’t ease confusion that even traditional software companies are adding cloud capabilities to their existing on-premises software portfolios. Does a smattering of cloud added to an existing product line make it a cloud company? You tell me.