OTB Ventures launches €150M deeptech fund
The first fund in Europe backed by new InvestEU Programme. New capital will be deployed in the European start-up ecosystem
22 November 2022 – OTB Ventures, the leading venture capital firm investing in early growth technology businesses with R&D in Europe and global potential, today announces the launch of the new OTB Fund II. The already launched fund, which is expected to raise €150 million, is the first fund to be supported by the InvestEU programme of the European Commission and The European Investment Bank Group (EIB Group). InvestEU is a new European flagship initiative focused on supporting crucial investments across Europe in line with the European Union’s policy priorities, including the European Green Deal and digital transition.
With €140 million raised as of first close, including €45 million from the InvestEU, OTB Ventures has achieved a record high first closing, reaching 93% of the fund’s target investment amount.
The successful fundraise demonstrates OTB Ventures’ pivotal role in the market and their commitment to the creation and growth of transformational deeptech businesses across Europe. The new capital will be used to directly invest in tech companies developing innovative scientific breakthroughs across four key sectors: enterprise AI automation, space technology, fintech, cybersecurity with special attention to ClimateTech solutions.
The latest raise builds on the success of the $138 million OTB Fund I, which was also backed by the European Scale-up Action for Risk capital (ESCALAR) programme, a joint EU and EIF initiative. Fund I continues to perform strongly, to date delivering circa 50% gross IRR, while returning half of the invested capital as of Q2 2022. In 2020, OTB introduced the $22 million EU backed space fund OTB Space Program I. Key 2022 investments from OTB Ventures also include, co-leading a $16 million Series A funding round in an enterprise blockchain application development platform, SettleMint (Belgium), a $40 million Series B funding round in a technology company specialising in AI for economic sanctions enforcement and financial crime prevention, Silent Eight (Singapore), Series A of $65 million in an account-to-account payment infrastructure startup, Kevin (Lithuania) and a $136 million Series D funding round in SAR satellite venture, ICEYE (Finland).
Adam Niewinski, co-founder and Managing Partner of OTB Ventures, commented: “We are proud to become the first venture capital company to be supported by the new InvestEU initiative. This funding is a tremendous recognition of the quality of work OTB Ventures has undertaken for many years to place deeptech at the heart of its business model. We believe that deeptech is the new frontier of global competition where Europe can actually play a leading role. OTB Ventures will continue to play an active role in further strengthening the sustainable competitive edge of European deeptech ecosystem based on its large talent pool”.
Marcin Hejka, co-founder and Managing Partner of OTB Ventures, commented: We are thrilled to collaborate with the EIF. Europe’s deeptech sector is thriving and is increasingly being appreciated by investors. OTB Fund II has the goal to accompany the process of developing technology to reach market maturity. We are very excited to partner with the exceptional founders working in Europe early on in their entrepreneurial journey”.
Prof. Teresa Czerwinska, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank, responsible for all operations under InvestEU, said: “The InvestEU brings much needed financing to support European businesses, boost innovation, deliver new infrastructure projects, and improve environment protection in the European Union. Financing available under InvestEU will help European companies maintain and create jobs, boost economic and social growth, and maintain global competitiveness of the EU economy. Through partnerships like the one with OTB Ventures, the EIB Group will ensure companies across Europe can benefit from InvestEU, accelerate the technological transition in EU countries, and ensure the EU can maintain its position as the global leader in innovation. This will be a solid foundation for sustainable growth and development across the EU which makes InvestEU an investment into a prosperous future for next generation of Europeans.”
Alain Godard, European Investment Fund Chief Executive, said: “European Investment Fund, as a partner of the InvestEU, together with European Commission and European Investment Bank, stands ready to foster innovation, build new markets, strengthen competitiveness and boost jobs and growth. OTB Ventures has built a strong position in the deeptech and InvestEU support will allow for further dynamic development of this sector.”