The Samwer Brothers, three German serial entrepreneurs who’ve made several fortunes copying US startups in Europe — and investing in US startups who want to beat European copycats, have just sold their stake in Facebook.
Their venture capital firm, European Founders Fund, invested in Facebook alongside Microsoft during the round that valued the company at $15 billion. Now, according to a German news site (via TechCrunch Europe) they’ve sold that stake.
Given that Facebook was last valued at $50 billion, this suggests they could have tripled their money in something like three years. They said they sold the stake now to free up cash to invest in other startups.
They were also early investors in StudiVZ, a German Facebook clone which got acquired for $100 million, and are investors in Nasza-Klasa, a big social network in Poland. They also have a Zynga clone called Plinga and sold their Groupon clone CityDeal to Groupon in less than 5 months. And they stand to make big bank on LinkedIn‘s IPO, since they’re also investors in that company.