Google launches venture capital fund

Google has launched its own venture capital fund.

Google Ventures will look to fund startups in internet, software, clean-tech, bio-tech and health care, to start with. The amount of money on offer will range from seed funding to tens of millions of dollars, it said.

In a blog post, Rich Miner and Bill Maris, the managing partners of Google Ventures, said Google is looking to support innovation in tech. "By borrowing the best practices of top-tier, financially focused venture capital firms and bringing to bear Google's unique technical expertise and brand, we think we can find young companies with truly awesome potential and encourage their development into successful businesses," they wrote.

While it said it will be looking for ideas which solve problems in "creative" or "innovative" ways, Google Ventures admitted it was also looking for investments with the potential for significant financial return.

While the fund will look to external companies, Google said its own employees would be a major source of assistance. "Central to our effort will be our fellow Googlers, whom we view as a critically important resource to help educate us about potential investments areas and evaluate specific companies."

Google Ventures noted that funded firms won't need to work with Google, and won't necessarily be acquired by the web giant if they become successful.

While it may seem a strange move to boost investment during a recession, they said innovation won't wait. "Economically, times are tough, but great ideas come when they will. If anything, we think the current downturn is an ideal time to invest in nascent companies that have the chance to be the "next big thing," and we'll be working hard to find them," they wrote.

Click here to read how startups are still getting funding despite the tough economic climate.