The startup ecosystem in Europe is booming, and a crucial aspect of it remains the Venture Capital firms. Once the startups reach the growth stage, a significant push in the form of funding is needed to enable them to escalate further smoothly.
According to figures from Dealroom.co, the European companies raised 38% of global venture capital at Seed, but this figure dropped to 21% at Series B and 14% at Series C (rounds of €40-100M). Until this is fixed, Europe will not reach its full potential, let alone challenge the dominance of the American and Asian tech giants.
According to one estimate, just one in eight European companies reach scale, compared with one in four in America. In a bid to address this issue, Highland Europe continues to focus on mission-critical growth-stage software and consumer technology companies, which have demonstrated compelling market traction and global ambition.
Closed £633 million
In this regard, Highland Europe, a growth-stage technology fund that invests in European internet, mobile, and software companies raised a new oversubscribed fund of €700 million (approx £633 million). The new fund takes Highland Europe’s assets under management to €1.8 billion (approx £1.6 billion).
Attracted £660 million
In addition to raising the round in record time, Highland has invested €200 million (approx £633 million) in 7 businesses — Alkemics, Cobalt, DominoDatalab, Farewill, Meditopia, Modulr, and Supermetrics a during the pandemic. The portfolio companies have attracted €730 million (approx £660 million) in follow-on investment in the last 12 months.
On the other side, Highland Europe has strengthened its industry-renowned team with the promotion of Jean Tardy-Joubert, Gajan Rajanathan, and Ronan Shally to Partner to help the founders it backs to achieve their ambitions.
Notably, Tardy-Joubert and Rajanathan joined Highland in 2017/18 from Qatalyst, while Shally has been with the firm since 2014 and is Highland’s Chief Financial Officer.
So far, the Geneva-headquartered company has invested in consumer tech brands and software companies such as AMCS, Brandwatch, ContentSquare, Featurespace, GetYourGuide, Huel, Jellysmack, MatchesFashion, Nexthink, PhotoBox, WeTransfer, Zwift, and Wolt.
Fergal Mullen, co-founder, and partner at Highland Europe said: “During 2020 we have seen 10-year trends in tech adoption compressed into one year across both consumer and business segments. The software has gone mainstream and it is mission-critical. The opportunity at the growth stage in Europe has never been more evident or more urgent. Highland Europe’s role is to bring capital, our deep network, and scaling expertise to companies that can make it all the way to IPO. We have the track record, the team, and a highly selective and focused strategy to help Europe’s most promising tech businesses become global leaders.”