Venture capital is hot, just ask Upfront.

The Santa Monica VC firm has raised $280 million to close its fifth fund, General Partner Mark Suster announced on his blog. The confirmation comes weeks after the VC firm had filed required documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The fund falls in line with Upfront’s three-year cycle of raising capital and investing. Investments from its fourth fund began in 2012 so expect new Upfront investments to begin by April.

Suster said the 40 percent increase in capital won’t change Upfront’s strategy of focusing on seed and Series A rounds, which make up 85 percent of its first investments.

That strategy has done the firm well this year. Upfront in April saw a potential $950 million exit for early investment Maker Studios to Walt Disney Co. TrueCar, another early Upfront portfolio company, went public in May, raising $70 million in its initial public offering.

The new fund took just six months to raise, according to Suster, which he attributed to a favorable economic climate for venture capital and the growing tech scene in Los Angeles. Upfront expects half of its upcoming deals to stay in Southern California.

“In 2015, we go back to square one and start to build a brand new portfolio,” Suster said on his blog. “It’s exciting. And daunting. And we feel honored to be entrusted to invest other people’s money (and our own) into the many exciting startups that we encounter.”

Staff reporter Melissah Yang can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @MelissahYang for the latest in L.A. tech news.

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