Google launches investment fund

Google has launched Google Ventures, a division to invest in promising start-ups.

The Wall Street Journal reported Google will fund the effort with $100 million in its first year.

"This is Google's effort to take advantage of our resources to support innovation and encourage promising new technology companies," said Google Ventures managing partners Rich Miner and Bill Maris.

"We'll be focusing on early stage investments across a diverse range of industries, including consumer Internet, software, clean-tech, bio-tech, health care and, no doubt, other areas we haven't thought of yet," the partners said.

Google is confident of its cash position and its ability to weather the storm.

"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," the partners said.

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