The most active seed-stage investors in Europe in 2022 (so far)

Seed and seed companies in Europe provided 3.1 billion euros in funding in 2021 — the highest year ever recorded. And despite a dip in January This year, total funding increased again to fourth quarter 2021 levels in February, March and April.

More recently, although the numbers have begun to reflect the slow-down, with total seed funding and number of transactions fall in July.

But that doesn’t mean there’s no more dry powder on the market. Many new businesses are springing up with seed-stage investment plans – cornerstone VC, for example – and VCs still have buckets of cash in their coffers from the heady fundraising days of 2021.

But who has been driving seed investment in Europe so far this year?

Using data from Dealroom, Sifted compiled a list of the most active seed-stage investors in Europe in 2022 (so far). Note that some of the listed investors also invest in Series A and above.

The most active seed-stage investors in Europe in 2022 (so far):

1. Sowers

The Seedr Team

Last fund: Seedrs is a crowdfunding platform that provides seed capital to startups. It has around 25-40 startups or scale-ups and venture capitalists available to invest on its platform at any given time.

To concentrate: Seedrs helps companies, from seed to Series D, achieve their fundraising goals, through their own communities and Seedrs’ investor base.

Number of seed-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 32

Gender breakdown of the investment team: There are 25 people in the investment team, with a gender split of around 50/50. There are 12 women on the team, including Kirsty Grant, chief investment officer.

Successful launches on the platform:

  • Jarvo, a workspace management platform based in Reading, UK.
  • AC, a London-based insurtech.
  • Oddbox, a UK-based company that runs a subscription service for surplus fruit and vegetables.

Advice for your portfolio founders in today’s market:

Equity crowdfunding fell much less than elsewhere in the private markets. We believe that with the right conditions, there is still significant interest in good start-up and growth-stage companies. We consistently see a success rate of around 90% on the platform for campaigns reaching their fundraising goal.

However, we find that companies invest less during their overfunding, and we advise those who approach us to take this into account in their business plans.

We have in-depth conversations with many of our clients about whether now is a good time for them to rise up, and part of that consideration is how their community might be affected by the current climate.

2. Bpifrance

Last fund: Bpifrance has dozens of small permanent funds to which startups can apply.

To concentrate: Bpifrance aims to support the growth of the French tech ecosystem by supporting entrepreneurs. Most of his investments are in companies based in France, with some investments in other European countries and the United States. The majority of its investments are in start-ups, but it does not intend to invest in later-stage companies.

Number of seed-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 25

Notable investments:

  • Ada Tech School, a feminist programming school based in France.
  • Mayday, a Paris-based company providing a smart assistant for customer service.
  • UMIAMI, a Parisian start-up producing a plant-based alternative to chicken.

Sifted approached Bpifrance for comment but received no response.

3. Kima Ventures

An image of Jean (middle) and part of the Kima Ventures team

Last fund: Paris-based Kima Ventures is the angel investment arm of French telecoms billionaire Xavier Neil. It is unclear how much the fund, which is managed by Jean de La Rochebrochard, currently has to deploy.

To concentrate: Kima says so invests €150,000 in unique tickets in 100 new deals per year at any stage, deal size and industry.

Number of seed-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 24

Notable investments:

  • Cera, an elderly care platform headquartered in London.
  • Sorare, a Paris-based NFT-based virtual collectible card game.
  • PayFit, a unicorn fintech based in Paris.

4. Speedinvest

Last fund: An 80 million euro fund announced in 2021, focused on sustainability.

To concentrate: Speedinvest has six sector investment teams that focus on Deep Tech, Fintech, Healthcare, Industrial Tech, Markets and Consumer and SaaS and Infrastructure companies. The team issues checks for up to €1 million for pre-seed businesses and up to €3 million for seed-stage businesses.

Number of seed-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 22

Gender breakdown of the investment team: The investment team has 40 full-time investors, including 13 women and 27 men. There are 17 partners, including four women and 13 men.

Notable investments:

  • STAGE, a Berlin-based scooter rental app.
  • Bitpanda, a Vienna-based cryptocurrency trading startup.
  • wefox, a Berlin-based insurtech platform.

Advice for your portfolio founders in today’s market: ” Do not panic. Take this time to carefully assess your product market fit and your path to scalable revenue, and ensure you have 24-36 months of trail before you need to scale again,” advises Oliver Holle, CEO and Partner Director of Speedinvest.

5. Y Combinator

Last fund: Twice a year, YC invests $500,000 in each company accepted into its startup accelerator.

To concentrate: The seed fund and accelerator considers businesses at any stage and in any field, making investments globally in the US, India, UK and many more country.

Number of seed-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 19

Gender breakdown of the investment team: Y Combinator has no partners and many people are involved in the decision to fund a business.

Notable investments:

  • Noloco, a no-code platform for building apps, based in Dublin.
  • Planet A Foods, a Munich-based 100% cocoa-free chocolate manufacturing company.
  • Bemlo, a Stockholm-based platform for comparing caregiver companies and assignments.

Advice for your portfolio founders in today’s market:

Some YC tips offers is:

  • Founders need to ask themselves: what is my current situation? How much money do I have? What is my lead?
  • For some, it’s about going on the offensive.
  • It’s a good time if you’re the underdog and your big competitor is in trouble.

👉 Read: Pre-Seed Funding 101: How to raise from those who have been there

The best of the rest

6. Seed Camp — One of Europe’s best-known early-stage investors, based in London. Independent sector.

Number of early-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 18

7. Gründerfonds high-tech — A seed-stage VC investing in digital technology, industrial technology, life sciences, chemicals and related business areas, based in Bonn, Germany.

Number of early-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 15

8. SFC Capital — A London-based start-up investor who primarily focuses on startups in the UK.

Number of early-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 14

9.Hatch — The team is made up of former founders who want to invest in companies in the pre-seed and seed stage. Most of its investments are in the UK, according to Dealroom.

Number of early-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 14

10. Vitosha Venture Partners — A Sofia-based fund that invests in early-stage and growth-stage companies based in or linked to Bulgaria.

Number of early-stage deals in Europe in 2022 (so far): 14

Sophie Zhang is an editorial assistant at Sifted.

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