Blossom raises £65m Series A fund for European tech startups

Fund launched by ex-Facebook, Deliveroo and Index Ventures execs aims to invest $5-10 million apiece in 4-5 deals per year.

Blossom Capital, the venture capital firm co-founded by ex-Index Ventures and LocalGlobe investor Ophelia Brown, has raised an $85 million fund (£65 million) to invest in European tech start-ups at the Series A stage.

It marks the fastest-ever first-time fundraise from a female venture capitalist in Europe.

Investors include leading institutional investors, as well as high-profile tech entrepreneurs, including Robinhood co-founder Vladimir Tenev and Zendesk founder Mikkel Svane.

The fund’s partners include former Deliveroo chief technology officer and director of product at Facebook Mike Hudack; Louise Samet, who spent six years leading the technical sales team at Klarna; and Imran Ghory, who previously led data-driven deal sourcing at Index.

London-based Blossom Capital is aiming to bring the “best of West Coast investing practice” to European technology start-ups, according to TechCrunch, with typical investments between the $5 million to $10 million range.

“Too often founders have felt they need to go to the West Coast to raise their Series A – with our unique Silicon Valley ties and deep networks, we’ve set up Blossom to help change that,” Brown told Fintech Futures.

The firm plans to do only four to five deals per year, the idea being to place fewer but bigger (and potentially riskier) bets, giving the handful of companies Blossom backs enough heft to scale up.

Blossom is also looking beyond the usual suspects of London and Berlin for its investments, eyeing start-ups in Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean, for example.

It has already backed four companies: travel platform Duffel, equipment rental platform Fat Llama, brand management service Frontify and app cybersecurity platform Sqreen. Co-investors have included Y Combinator, Greylock and Index Ventures.

Imran Ghory said that because Blossom’s founders come from a tech background, they can communicate easily with start-up founders.

“Traditionally European Venture has been dominated by non-technical investors,” Ghory told City AM. “We’ve found having the majority of the investment team with engineering, product and data backgrounds at Blossom makes a huge difference to founders who know we speak their language.”

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