LONDON — Lastminute.com founder Brent Hoberman has raised a $US60 million (£47 million) fund to invest in early stage technology companies.
The “Firstminute Capital” fund was announced on Monday and will be used to make seed stage investments in companies across Europe. It has been set up with former Goldman Sachs analyst Spencer Crawley.
The fund will invest between $US250,000 (£196,000) and $US750,000 (£589,000) at a time.
“We believe that emerging European technology startups will continue to excite, and build on the momentum that has seen 47 unicorn companies built in Europe in the last 10 years,” Hoberman said in a statement.
“We hope to help the next generation of top entrepreneurs, both with our reach and by giving them credibility and support. We will invest not just in the UK, but across Europe. We were aiming to raise $US60 million for our first fund, and to have achieved that with oversubscription before our final close is a strong signal for European technology. We believe the fund represents an unparalleled wealth of expertise to deliver on this promise.”
A number of entrepreneurs contributed to the new fund including the cofounders of companies like Skype, Supercell, Betfair, Zoopla, King.com, Skyscanner, BlaBlaCar, Autonomy, Net-a-Porter.
Ex-Skype CEO Niklas Zennström, partner and CEO at Atomico, said in a statement: “Brent is a pioneer of technology entrepreneurship in Europe. For two decades he has done more than most to find, support and encourage Europe’s best founders.
“That’s why we wanted to be his first investor. We share a firm belief in the future of Europe’s technology ecosystem so we’re excited to be part of this new fund as it backs Europe’s most promising early stage founders.”
Hoberman is involved with a number of other companies including startup incubator Founders Factory and online furniture store made.com.