Cambridge VC raises £225m fund to back deeptech startups

Cambridge Innovation Capital

VC firm Cambridge Innovation Capital has raised £225m for its second fund to invest in deeptech and life science startups based in Cambridge.

The fund will mainly invest in startups at the seed and Series A stage. A typical investment will be as much as £5m, with £15m reserved for follow on fundraising.

It brings Cambridge Innovation Capital’s assets under management to $1bn. Founded in 2013, the venture firm is the preferred investment partner of the University of Cambridge.

It has previously invested in approximately 40 startups, including quantum computing software company Riverlane and cancer immunotherapeutic firm Epitopea.

The oversubscribed Fund II is Cambridge Innovation’s largest fundraise to date. It follows the venture firm’s £75m fundraise in 2016, which went on to invest in the likes of CMR Surgical and Pragmatic Semiconductor.

“Cambridge, UK is one of the fastest-growing science and technology innovation ecosystems in the world,” said Andrew Williamson, managing partner of Cambridge Innovation Capital, also known as CIC. “Since our inception, CIC and our co-investors have invested more than £2bn in sectors as diverse as robotics, semiconductors, genomics, gene therapy, therapeutics, liquid biopsy, artificial intelligence, and edge computing.”

The capital for its latest fund came from a group of about 50 institutional and strategic investors, with almost half of the cash coming from those based in the UK.

Its second fund has already invested in six startups.

Cambridge Innovation Capital has also co-founded DeepTech Labs and Start Codon, two business accelerators based in the university city.

According to government research, Cambridge is the UK’s top regional tech hub thanks to the high levels of VC funding and startup creation in the city.

Cambridge has become a magnet for deeptech startups, particularly in quantum computing. The city is the home of Cambridge Quantum Computing, which last year completed a merger with US-based Honeywell Quantum Solutions to create a quantum computing powerhouse named Quantinuum.