London-based Shard Credit Partners has had the first close of its £75m UK tech venture debt fund, securing £16.5m to invest in B2B SaaS and fintech companies.
A venture debt fund, unlike a venture capital fund, means the company is required to pay back any investments it receives. One reason for using a venture-debt fund would be to avoid reducing the equity of previous investors.
Through the fund, Shard wants to make 15 investments each year for three years.
The capital comes from UK-based tech industry angels alongside institutional investors from the UK and Europe.
“We are delighted to hold our first close of the fund and we look forward to continuing to support fast-growth businesses across the software as a service and fintech sectors,” said William Chappel, head of venture debt, Shard Credit Partners Limited.
“We aim to become the ‘go-to’ debt provider for venture capital-backed high-growth technology businesses in the UK.”
Shard’s fund will be aimed at firms that have a minimum annual recurring revenue of £2m and are struggling to find longer-term financing solutions.
Loans from the Shard fund will be available between £2m and £6m with a maximum term of five years.
Alastair Brown, chief executive, Shard Credit Partners Limited said: “The successful launch of our inaugural UK technology venture debt fund, just one year after launching this unique strategy, is a testament to the hard work of everyone that has been involved and is something to be proud of.
“It further cements our position as a specialist private credit manager in the UK and continental European direct lending marketplace”.
Investments from the fund include London-based SaaS regtech provider PassFort, which was exited by the fund in December last year.
The firm joins the likes of Fujitsu which this week announced it was investing £22m into the UK’s technology and science sectors.