Arca Continental has shut its CVC arm, one of the more prominent units in Latin America, as the likes of SAP, ZF and Verizon fall back.

AC Ventures, the corporate venturing unit of Coca Cola bottler Arca Continental, is shutting its doors after six years. It is one of a number of CVC units that are winding down operations.

GCV understands that an internal analysis over the past six months has led to a decision at Arca Continental, made around a month ago, to shut down the CVC. The decision was made for a number of reasons, including a general discomfort with the risk profile of venture capital. The investment arm was an initiative that had been brought in by Arca Continental’s previous CEO. The company is also understood to be wary of committing more money to VC activity, having already become an LP in Coca Cola’s $137.7m sustainability fund last year.

Two members of the AC Ventures’ team will remain at the company, although management of the portfolio, which was invested in from the balance sheet, will be a passive activity going forward. Focus within the corporate is pivoting to internal innovation processes and M&A to drive growth.

The unit’s latest investment came last month, when they took part in an $8m round for AI-powered manufacturing analytics startup Pulsar.

AC Ventures is just one of several established corporate venture funds that have recently closed or downgraded operations. Those taking a step back include:

ZX Ventures

ZX Ventures, the investment and innovation arm of Belgium-headquartered alcoholic beverages group AB InBev, has shut and ceased operations, according to a source. Global Corporate Venturing has reached out for comment.

The unit disclosed its last investment in February 2023 and of the six team members listed on its website, only managing partner Bernardo Novick still lists it as a current position on LinkedIn. Investment partner David Bassani moved on in April 2023, the rest of the team having left in autumn 2022.

AB InBev launched ZX Ventures in 2015 and its portfolio companies included online delivery service Rappi and coffee brand Super Coffee. Its team also included investment partner Luba Safran, who took up a senior director position at snack producer Mondelēz’s SnackFutures in January.

Germany-based enterprise software producer SAP formally shut its corporate venture capital (CVC), arm, at the start of this month, after seven years.

SAP launched the unit in 2017 with $35m together with accelerator Foundry and claims its portfolio has been responsible for some 70 exits as well as five companies that reached a $1bn valuation. The corporate is still a significant backer of VC firm Sapphire Ventures.

In recent years, had pivoted to focus primarily on its accelerator, which had been rebranded as Foundries, taking part in its last external round in 2022. Sallie Jian, formerly head of in New York, left in May last year to head up alcoholic beverage producer Diageo’s CVC and M&A activities in North America.

ZF Ventures

Automotive component manufacturer ZF is considering closing CVC subsidiary ZF Ventures and is discussing the possibility with partners, investors and employees, according to a report by German business weekly Wirtschaftswoche.

ZF Ventures was formed in 2016 to invest in and partner with mobility and industrial technology startups, and has built a portfolio of seven companies and four limited partner commitments to funds.

However, the unit invests off the ZF balance sheet instead of out of a fund, and ZF is looking to cut costs to reduce almost $12bn in coporate debt. As a result, it wants to prioritise technologies that can generate returns within a more immediate timeframe, the group told Wirtschaftswoche.

Verizon Ventures

Once one of the most prominent telecoms CVCs, Verizon Ventures has cut the size of its team from over a dozen to just four, GCV has learned.

Founded over three decades ago, Verizon’s venture arm has gradually dialled down the rate of its investments over the past two years. Chris Bartlett, formerly the head of the unit, has been promoted to become the group’s chief strategy officer.

Key departures include Michelle McCarthy and fellow managing director Kristina Serafim, who moved to venture firm Untethered Ventures last year. The unit is still operating, though the only deal it has disclosed in the past six months was its participation in a series B round for wifi sensing technology provider and existing portfolio company Origin AI.