After weeks of speculation in the media, Google Ventures finally announced the launch of a new venture fund aimed to support the next generation of European startups, with initial funding of 100 million dollars.
Although the European arm will be based in Clerkenwell, near London, the new fund’s investments will be made throughout Europe. In a blog post Bill Maris, Managing Partner at Google Ventures, said they “want to invest in the best ideas from the best European entrepreneurs, and help them bring those ideas to life.”
As the Financial Times reports, the company will have four general partners at its European office, including Eze Vidra, a longstanding executive who set up Google’s “Campus” in London, British angel investor Peter Read, serial entrepreneur Tom Hulme, and Avid Larizadeh, the head of the UK arm of code.org. MG Siegler, an American tech blogger turned general partner at Google Ventures US, ” will move to London for short a period of time to serve as a liaison between the US and European operations, but keeps his current title,” explained a GV spokesman.
Google Ventures said the initial investment of 100 million dollars could increase over time, depending on its success. Maris also told the FT it was not clear what size, number or type of investments the fund would make in the region yet. “We believe Europe’s startup scene has enormous potential. We’ve seen compelling new companies emerge from places like London, Paris, Berlin, the Nordic region and beyond — SoundCloud, Spotify, Supercell and many others,” he said.
Established in California in 2009, Google Ventures US has been operating a fund of 300 million dollars per year with a portfolio of over 250 companies and invested mostly in the tech, mobile and consumer fields.