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The iFund™ is a capital fund for investment in the development of applications, services, and components for the iPhone®, iPad®, and iPod touch®. The fund was originally established in March 2008 as a $100 million US Dollar (USD) program to fund development for the iPhone® and iPod touch®, and in March 2010 an additional $100 million USD was added to the fund. At that point, the initial money had already been invested with 14 companies. The iFund™ is funded through Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) capital investment funds and managed by partners of the firm. According to the KPCB website, Apple® provides "market insight and support" to KPCB and similarly works with the companies associated with the iFund™.
Submissions from companies seeking investment capital from the iFund™ can be made by email, and contact information may be found on the KPCB website. Such submissions are required to address what market needs exist and how the company's product would meet them, as well as describe how the product is distinguished from the rest of the market and how the product will generate a profit. Companies seeking capital are also expected to list the people involved in the venture and their qualifications. Based on the submitted information, KPCB may then seek further information on the project. Their website also states that the process can be expedited with a referral from someone who has worked with KPCB in the past.
The range of investment into each iFund™ venture is between $100,000 USD for seed capital and $15 million USD for expansion capital, and funds are available to companies of various sizes and projects at various stages. The stated intent of KPCB at the time the fund was increased was to continue finding capital for the iFund™ as needed. Capital is officially available without national or geographic restrictions, though laws of specific localities may restrict outside investment. According to official KPCB statements, KPCB is closed to new investors, and thus so is the iFund™.
The officially given reason for the specific nature of the iFund™ is the potential perceived by KPCB of the iPhone®, iPod touch®, and iPad®. According to KPCB, the potential opportunities they perceive arising from this group of products alone are comparable to opportunities available through the Internet as it relates to personal computers. They declare an expectation that leading innovators will focus on the development of applications for these devices.
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