Tuesday, October 28, 2014

United Ventures Closes Fund at $80M, Plans To Take Italian Talent Global

Milan, 28th October 2014 - United Ventures, the European technology-focused Venture Capital firm, has today announced the closure of its first fund with $80 Million (€50 million), well beyond its final target size of €50 million ($63.6 Million). The new fund, entitled United Ventures One, is a significant milestone for the Milan-based Venture Capital firm and signals a renewed interest by investors into the European tech space. The firm to date has already invested over €16 Million in nine companies operating across Europe and North America including significant investments into MoneyFarm, Cloud4WI, Halldis and Appsbuilder as well as 20Lines, Marinanow, LoveTheSign and Badseed.

Investors in the fund are two-thirds comprised of institutions, banks and fund of funds and one-third individuals. The Europen Investment Fund joined other investors in United Ventures, including the Italian Investment Fund, who committed €10M in the first closing while the remaining €20M have been committed by Fondazione Banco di Sardegna, the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Lucca, Banca Sella Holding and Banca Patrimoni Sella & C. "The European Fund historically has invested very little in Italy and it is the first time that it does so in a corporate vehicle".
The investor base sees the participation, beyond the Italian Investment Fund, of other institutional funds - such as Fondazione Banco di Sardegna, Foundation Savings Bank of Lucca, Banca Sella and Banca Patrimoni) and of private investors at the side of the management team, such as Matteo Fago, co-founder of VenereMarco Corradino co-founder of VolagratisEdoardo Loewenthal of 6SicuroValerio De Molli of the European House Ambrosetti and Davide Serra of Algebris Investments.

The objective is to invest an average of €1-6 million across a total of 20 companies in Italy and Europe across sectors that include Digital Technologies, Software, Mobile, Commerce and Gaming.

We are delighted to announce the final closing of our first fund,” says Massimiliano Magrini, co-founder and Managing Partner of United Ventures. “With a skilled team of finance, technology and management experts at the helm focusing on just one key vertical we are looking forward to growing the next wave of tech startups through a multi-stage strategy and expanding them on a worldwide scale.”

The fund’s strong closing, which was oversubscribed, is indicative of a significant surge of interest in the European start up sector where companies have raised more than $2.8 billion (€2.1 billion) from VCs in the second quarter of 2014, the highest quarterly total since the dot-com bust year of 2001.

Launched in 2013 by Massimilano Magrini and Paolo Gesess after 15+ years in the tech VC space with successful IPOs and exits under their belts,
United Ventures is dedicated to driving visionary entrepreneurs with a passion for disruptive, scalable technologies to success on a global stage. Spotting talented startups at early stage and following through with investment as the company scales up, the Venture Capital firm adopts a hands on approach that allows its portfolio companies access to a wealth of experience and networking opportunities.

At a time of heightened interest in technology companies, the fund closing follows 92 European tech exits in the second quarter of 2014, of which 10 were IPOs. This is up from 54 deals tracked in Q1 2014, an increase of about 70 percent. The recent sale of DeepMind to Google and Natural Motion to Zynga, both for in excess of £1 billion, has also excited the interests of investors globally.

Magrini concluded, “The European tech scene is coming of age and United Ventures is hugely excited to be participating with a significant role in its maturation”.