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News-Kategorie: Venture Capital

GOF advises PROM12 on investment in Communardo software

Munich — Busi­ness law firm Gütt Olk Feld­haus advi­sed PROM12, an invest­ment company focu­sed on the technology/ tech-enab­led services/ soft­ware sectors, on the acqui­si­tion of Commu­nardo Soft­ware GmbH. Commu­nardo, head­quar­te­red in Dres­den, Germany, is a full-service provi­der for the modern work­place with nearly 220 employees at seven loca­ti­ons in Germany, Austria and Alba­nia, genera­ting reve­nues of 40 million euros.

PROM12 as a specia­list for Digi­tal Trans­for­ma­tion and IT Services supports Commu­nardo in its future deve­lo­p­ment, working closely with Communardo’s manage­ment to stra­te­gi­cally deve­lop the company for inter­na­tio­nal growth. Ilja Hauß and Dirk Röhr­born will remain as share­hol­ders. Dirk Röhr­born will conti­nue to be respon­si­ble for Communardo’s busi­ness as CEO.

The acqui­si­tion is subject to appro­val by the anti­trust autho­ri­ties. GOF advi­sed PROM12 on all phases of the transaction.

Legal advi­sors PROM12: Gütt Olk Feld­haus, Munich
Dr. Kilian Helm­reich (Part­ner, Lead), Adrian von Prit­twitz (Part­ner; both Corporate/M&A), Thomas Becker (Of Coun­sel, IP/IT/Data Protec­tion), Isabelle Vrancken, Karl Ehren­berg (both Senior Asso­cia­tes, both Corporate/M&A)

Pusch Wahlig Work­place Law, Munich: Ingo Sappa (Labor Law)

About Gütt Olk Feldhaus
Gütt Olk Feld­haus is a leading inter­na­tio­nal law firm based in Munich. We provide compre­hen­sive advice on commer­cial and corpo­rate law. Our focus is on corpo­rate law, M&A, private equity and finan­cing. In these specia­list areas we also take on the litigation.

Quantum technology: Pixel Photonics receives €1.45 million seed funding

Müns­ter, March 29, 2022 — Pixel Photo­nics, a spin-off from the Depart­ment of Physics at WWU Müns­ter foun­ded in 2020, has recei­ved €1.45 million in a seed finan­cing round from High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF), the French VC fund Quan­to­na­tion, which specia­li­zes in quan­tum tech­no­logy, and Dr. Hendrik Sabert, a proven expert in the photo­nics industry.

Pixel Photo­nics deve­lops highly scala­ble single photon detec­tors with inte­gra­ted photo­nics, enab­ling scaling of solu­ti­ons in quan­tum compu­ting, QKD and imaging, among others. The under­ly­ing wave­guide-inte­gra­ted SNSPD approach can be used for photo­nic quan­tum compu­ting, quan­tum key distri­bu­tion, micro­scopy, or other sensing appli­ca­ti­ons that require highly effec­tive detec­tion of light down to the single photon level. During the start-up phase Pixel Photo­nics was suppor­ted by the REACH EUREGIO Start-up Center in Müns­ter as well as EXIST.

Quan­to­na­tion and HTGF co-led the seed funding round with serial foun­der, former venture capi­tal mana­ger and photo­nics indus­try expert Dr. Hendrik Sabert. With this funding, Pixel Photo­nics will further expand its inter­na­tio­nal team in Germany, expand its premi­ses at the Center for Nano­tech­no­logy (CeNTech) in Müns­ter, and acce­le­rate the commer­cia­liz­a­tion of its products. Pixel Photo­nics bene­fits from the excel­lent inter­na­tio­nal network within Quantonation’s quan­tum tech­no­logy commu­nity as well as from HTGF’s large indus­trial tech­no­logy portfolio.

“Pixel Photo­nics’ unique tech­no­lo­gi­cal approach to single photon detec­tion combi­nes scala­bi­lity with high detec­tion effi­ci­ency at very high speed. This enab­les new appli­ca­ti­ons as well as scaling up the number of photons used in quan­tum compu­ting or data rates in quan­tum cryp­to­gra­phy without incre­a­sing tech­ni­cal comple­xity. The team of physi­cists and entre­pre­neurs that emer­ged from Prof. Pernice’s and Prof. Schuck’s groups convin­ced us with their vision and exper­tise,” said Chris­to­phe Jurc­zak, part­ner at Quantonation.

In addi­tion to this important inves­tor funding, Pixel Photo­nics and the Depart­ment of Physics at West­fä­li­sche Wilhelms-Univer­si­tät (WWU) Müns­ter have been awar­ded €2.6 million in rese­arch funding from the German Federal Minis­try of Educa­tion and Rese­arch (BMBF) to use quan­tum physics to improve data secu­rity. The aim of the so-called QSAMIS project, which is funded under the BMBF program “Enab­ling Start-up — Start-ups in Quan­tum Tech­no­lo­gies and Photo­nics”, is to deve­lop the first giga­bit QKD (Quan­tum Key Distri­bu­tion) system with a signi­fi­cantly incre­a­sed trans­mis­sion rate to enable quan­tum-safe commu­ni­ca­tion for broad­band networks.

The idea came from Prof. Wolf­ram Pernice and Prof. Cars­ten Schuck
The idea for Pixel Photo­nics’ detec­tor design origi­na­ted years ago from the rese­arch of Prof. Wolf­ram Pernice and Prof. Cars­ten Schuck. Scien­tists repeatedly expres­sed the need for single photon detec­tors with nume­rous chan­nels in combi­na­tion with addi­tio­nal func­tio­n­a­li­ties from inte­gra­ted optics at confe­ren­ces. This demand led to the first sale and deli­very of a four-chan­nel detec­tor for rese­arch purpo­ses earlier this year, and it is plan­ned to offer detec­tor systems with 32 or more chan­nels in the near future.

About Pixel Photonics
Pixel Photo­nics was foun­ded in 2020 as a spin-off from the rese­arch groups of Prof. Wolf­ram Pernice and Prof. Cars­ten Schuck at WWU Müns­ter by Nico­lai Walter, Dr. Wladick Hart­mann, Fabian Beutel, Martin Wolff and Chris­toph Seiden­stü­cker with the goal of commer­cia­li­zing highly scala­ble single photon detec­tors based on the wave­guide inte­gra­ted SNSPD approach. Appli­ca­ti­ons for Pixel Photo­nics’ tech­no­logy range from opti­cal quan­tum compu­ting, quan­tum key distri­bu­tion (QKD), micro­scopy to metro­logy and sensing. The company consists of an inter­na­tio­nal team with 8 full-time employees and has recei­ved EXIST funding, venture capi­tal funding from Quan­to­na­tion and HTGF, and rese­arch funding from the German Federal Minis­try of Educa­tion and Rese­arch (BMBF).

About Quan­to­na­tion
Quan­to­na­tion is the first venture capi­tal fund to specia­lize in quan­tum tech­no­lo­gies and inno­va­tive physics. Areas such as mate­ri­als design, high-perfor­mance compu­ting, cyber­se­cu­rity, and ultra-precise detec­tion are now driven by inno­va­tions based on these breakthrough tech­no­lo­gies. Quan­to­na­tion aims to support their tran­si­tion to market­a­ble products for indus­try. Quan­to­na­tion is head­quar­te­red in Paris, France, and invests worldwide.

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About REACH
The North Rhine-West­pha­lian Minis­try for Econo­mic Affairs, Inno­va­tion, Digi­ta­liz­a­tion and Energy has been funding the estab­lish­ment and work of a start-up center under the auspi­ces of the EMU with a total of around 20 million euros since 2019. This resul­ted in the REACH EUREGIO Start-up Center with the parti­ci­pa­tion of the coope­ra­tion part­ners Müns­ter Univer­sity of Applied Scien­ces, Digi­tal Hub müns­ter­LAND and the Univer­sity of Twente. The Start-up Center provi­des the infra­st­ruc­ture and resour­ces necessary to help those inte­res­ted in star­ting a busi­ness in higher educa­tion estab­lish their start-ups. As a univer­sity start-up center, REACH is commit­ted to the trans­fer of scien­ti­fic know­ledge into start-up practice.
Learn more: https://www.reach-euregio.de

About High-Tech Gründerfonds
The seed inves­tor High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) finan­ces tech­no­logy start-ups with growth poten­tial. With a volume of around EUR 900 million spread across three funds and an inter­na­tio­nal part­ner network, HTGF has suppor­ted more than 650 start-ups since 2005. His team of expe­ri­en­ced invest­ment mana­gers and start-up experts supports the young compa­nies with know-how, entre­pre­neu­rial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the fields of digi­tal tech, indus­trial tech, life scien­ces, chemi­stry and rela­ted busi­ness areas. More than €4 billion in capi­tal has been inves­ted in the HTGF port­fo­lio by exter­nal inves­tors in more than 1,800 follow-on finan­cing rounds to date. In addi­tion, the fund has already success­fully sold shares in more than 150 companies.

 

Insurance group Baloise leads seven-figure financing round at MOBIKO

Munich — Norton Rose Fulbright has advi­sed mobi­lity budget startup MOBIKO GmbH on a finan­cing round by Swiss insurance group Baloise. Baloise invests a seven-figure sum in MOBIKO. In addi­tion to Baloise and the exis­ting inves­tors Audi Busi­ness Inno­va­tion GmbH and mantro GmbH, the startup Family Office based in Wein­gar­ten is also invol­ved in the finan­cing round.

The startup company MOBIKO (short for mobi­lity quota) offers employ­ers a monthly flexi­ble digi­tal mobi­lity budget for all employees. With this tool, each employee uses his or her budget indi­vi­du­ally and is rewar­ded for envi­ron­ment­ally friendly mobi­lity beha­vior. MOBIKO was deve­lo­ped by Audi Busi­ness Inno­va­tion toge­ther with the Munich-based company mantro and spun off as an inde­pen­dent GmbH in 2018.

Audi Busi­ness Inno­va­tion GmbH (ABI) is a wholly owned subsi­diary of AUDI AG and focu­ses on the deve­lo­p­ment and imple­men­ta­tion of digi­tal concepts and products. ABI provi­des reli­able IT plat­forms for AUDI AG and the Volks­wa­gen Group.

mantro GmbH, based in Munich, supports medium-sized compa­nies and corpo­ra­ti­ons in the deve­lo­p­ment of new digi­tal busi­ness models. With more than 16 years of expe­ri­ence and 28 foun­ded ventures, mantro has become a specia­list for digi­ta­liz­a­tion and company building.

The Startup Family Office builds up young compa­nies with venture capi­tal and active support from expe­ri­en­ced entre­pre­neurs from medium-sized busi­nes­ses in a targe­ted manner and supports foun­ders holisti­cally, effec­tively and sustainably in the deve­lo­p­ment of inno­va­tive solutions.

“The concept of MOBIKO convin­ced us, as it can change the mobi­lity of compa­nies and their employees in a sustainable way. With MOBIKO’s mobi­lity budget, employ­ers can cover the indi­vi­dual needs of their employees and consi­der all mobi­lity solu­ti­ons. This maxi­mum flexi­bi­lity, combi­ned with incen­ti­ves, leads to signi­fi­cantly more envi­ron­ment­ally friendly mobi­lity beha­vior,” says Patrick Wirth (photo), Head of Mobi­lity Unit at Baloise. The Swiss insurance group Baloise employs around 7,700 people and is among the top 5 Swiss insu­rers for private indi­vi­du­als and compa­nies. Baloise was foun­ded in 1863 and gene­ra­tes annual sales of appro­xi­mately CHF 9 billion. Core markets are Switz­er­land, Germany, Belgium and Luxembourg.

Advi­sors to MOBIKO GmbH: Norton Rose Fulbright
Lead Part­ner Sebas­tian Frech (Corpo­rate, M&A, Venture Capital);
Part­ner Dr. Tim Scha­per (Anti­trust), Asso­cia­tes Sebas­tian Eisen­hut (Corpo­rate, M&A, Venture Capi­tal), Mari­anne Milo­va­nov (Corpo­rate, M&A, Venture Capi­tal) and Rese­arch Asso­ciate Dennis Hoetzl.

Audi was advi­sed on the tran­sac­tion by the law firm GLNS in Munich.

Advi­sor Baloise: Law firm YPOG, Berlin

About Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright is a global busi­ness law firm. With more than 4,000 lawy­ers in over 50 offices world­wide in Europe, the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, Austra­lia, Africa and the Middle East, we advise leading natio­nal and inter­na­tio­nal companies.

We offer our clients compre­hen­sive advice in all major indus­tries. These include Finan­cial Insti­tu­ti­ons; Energy; Infra­st­ruc­ture, Mining and Commo­di­ties; Trans­por­ta­tion; Tech­no­logy and Inno­va­tion; and Life Scien­ces and Health­care. Our global Risk Advi­sory Group combi­nes this exten­sive indus­try expe­ri­ence with its exper­tise in legal, regu­la­tory, compli­ance and gover­nance matters. This enab­les us to provide our clients with prac­ti­cal solu­ti­ons to the legal and regu­la­tory risks they face.

The Swiss asso­cia­tion Norton Rose Fulbright helps to coor­di­nate the acti­vi­ties of Norton Rose Fulbright members, but does not provide legal advice to clients. Norton Rose Fulbright has offices in more than 50 cities world­wide, inclu­ding London, Hous­ton, New York, Toronto, Mexico City, Hong Kong, Sydney and Johan­nes­burg. www.nortonrosefulbright.com/legal-notices

EQT Ventures

EQT Ventures leads USD 15 million seed round for Origin.Bio

Munich — EQT Ventures leads USD 15 million seed round for start up Origin.Bio. In addi­tion to EQT Ventures, other back­ers include Bluey­ard and Inven­tures. DLA Piper advi­sed EQT Ventures on its invest­ment in the Munich-based start-up Origin.Bio in this seed round.

Since its foun­ding in 2021, Origin.Bio, a synthe­tic biology company, has been connec­ting bioen­gi­neers with nature. It produ­ces synthe­tic micro­or­ga­nisms that can produce many of the same subs­tan­ces that tradi­tio­nal chemi­cal indus­try proces­ses do today, but with signi­fi­cantly lower energy use and waste genera­tion and avoiding petro­leum chemi­cals. The company provi­des the link between R&D‑focused insti­tu­ti­ons and manu­fac­tu­rers and incre­a­sed climate-focu­sed innovation.

EQT Ventures is the venture capi­tal fund of the Swedish private equity fund EQT Part­ners. EQT Ventures invests in fast-growing, inno­va­tive and tech­no­logy-driven compa­nies in all sectors world­wide, with a focus on Europe and the US.

Advi­sors to EQT Ventures: DLA Piper
The DLA Piper team, led by Part­ner Andreas Füch­sel (Private Equity/M&A), conti­nued to include Part­ner Semin O (Liti­ga­tion & Regu­la­tory), Coun­sel Kaja Herr­mann (Labor Law), Senior Asso­ciate Phil­ipp Groll (Private Equity/M&A) and Asso­cia­tes Alex­an­der Rösch (Liti­ga­tion & Regu­la­tory), Johan­nes Klug (Labor Law, all Frank­furt) and Jessica Herr­mann (Corpo­rate, Munich).

About DLA Piper
DLA Piper is one of the world’s leading commer­cial law firms, with offices in more than 40 coun­tries in Africa, Asia, Austra­lia, Europe, the Middle East, and North and South America. In Germany, DLA Piper is repre­sen­ted by more than 240 lawy­ers at its offices in Frank­furt, Hamburg, Colo­gne and Munich. In certain juris­dic­tions, this infor­ma­tion may be consi­de­red attor­ney adver­ti­sing. www.dlapiper.com

LUTZ | ABEL advises AMSilk on Series C financing of EUR 29 million

Munich — Amsilk has closed a Series C finan­cing of EUR 29 million. The finan­cing was led by Novo Growth, the growth equity arm of Novo Holdings, with parti­ci­pa­tion from new inves­tors Cargill and E.R. Capi­tal Holdings, as well as exis­ting inves­tors MIG and Athos. With the funding, AMSilk aims to scale its global projects as well as inter­na­tio­na­liz­a­tion. The aim is to reach new indus­tries and customers.

Envi­ron­ment­ally friendly and sustainable silk biopolymers

AMSilk is a leader in the produc­tion of high-perfor­mance orga­nic silk mate­ri­als with a vision to offer more sustainable products. The silk products are made from vege­ta­ble raw mate­ri­als and are produ­ced via bacte­rial fermen­ta­tion. Thanks to their versa­tile proper­ties, silk products are in demand in many indus­tries, for example in high-perfor­mance sports­wear and medi­cal implants. The products are 100 percent recy­clable and biode­grad­able. With the funding, AMSilk will acce­le­rate indus­trial scale-up and reach new markets.

Kartik Dhar­mad­hi­kari, part­ner at Novo Growth, said, “The tech­no­logy has the poten­tial to revo­lu­tio­nize a number of indus­tries and be part of the decar­bo­niz­a­tion push needed to address the biggest envi­ron­men­tal chal­len­ges of our time.”

Michael Motsch­mann, Gene­ral Part­ner of MIG, added: “As an Amsilk Seed inves­tor, we are proud of the great progress the company has made since its incep­tion. Our conti­nued invest­ment in Amsilk reflects our vision to invest in early-stage biotech and deep tech compa­nies and drive inno­va­tion that can advance the world.”

Advi­sor AMSILK: LUTZ | ABEL Rechts­an­walts PartG mbB
The consul­ting team around Dr. Bern­hard Noreisch, LL.M. (lead) consis­ted of Jan-Phil­lip Kunz, LL.M. (both VC/M&A, Munich) and Dr. Marius Mann (Commer­cial, Stuttgart).

About LUTZ | ABEL
The commer­cial law firm LUTZ | ABEL advi­ses on all aspects of commer­cial law with around 85 lawy­ers and offices in Munich, Hamburg, Stutt­gart and Berlin.

Saffron booth

ARQIS advises SkyFive on Series A financing round

Düssel­dorf — ARQIS advi­sed SkyFive AG on its Series A finan­cing round. This was led by Safran Corpo­rate Ventures and STAR Capi­tal, a Euro­pean private equity fund mana­ger with exten­sive expe­ri­ence in deve­lo­ping emer­ging infra­st­ruc­ture compa­nies. This is the first invest­ment in Germany by Safran Corpo­rate Ventures, the venture capi­tal arm of Safran, one of the world’s largest suppliers of aircraft systems.

SkyFive, based at the AIRBUS campus in Tauf­kir­chen near Munich, Germany, provi­des broad­band connec­ti­vity services and tech­no­logy to airlines and other aircraft opera­tors in key avia­tion markets world­wide, based on its paten­ted Air-To-Ground (A2G) solu­tion that uses stan­dard cellu­lar components.

“This success­ful first close of our Series A funding round — at the height of the COVID pande­mic — is a strong vali­da­tion of SkyFive’s tech­no­logy leaders­hip and its signi­fi­cant oppor­tu­nity in the market. Toge­ther, we expect the digi­tiz­a­tion of avia­tion to acce­le­rate post-pande­mic. In this context, in-flight broad­band connec­ti­vity will become a stra­te­gic corner­stone for the entire indus­try,” says Thors­ten Robrecht, CEO of SkyFive.

ARQIS advi­sed SkyFive at the very begin­ning when the company acqui­red the key assets of its Air-to-Ground (A2G) busi­ness from Nokia in an MBO in 2019. The Munich team led by Dr. Mauritz von Einem and Prof. Dr. Chris­toph von Einem subse­quently advi­sed on the following two finan­cing rounds and the conver­sion of SkyFive into a stock corpo­ra­tion in summer 2020. Prepa­ra­ti­ons are curr­ently under­way for the 2nd closing of the Series A as well as the expan­sion of SkyFive’s Chinese subsidiary.

Advi­sor SkyFive: ARQIS (Munich)
Dr. Mauritz von Einem (Lead; Venture Capital/Taxes), Prof. Dr. Chris­toph von Einem (Venture Capi­tal), Marcus Noth­hel­fer (IP/Commercial), Dr. Andrea Panzer-Heemeier (Labor Law; Düssel­dorf); Coun­sel: Tanja Kurtzer (Pensi­ons); Asso­cia­tes: Louisa Graf, Benja­min Bandur, Anselm Graf (all Venture Capi­tal), Rolf Tichy, Nora Meyer-Strat­mann (both IP/Commercial)

About ARQIS
ARQIS is an inde­pen­dent busi­ness law firm opera­ting inter­na­tio­nally. The firm was foun­ded in 2006 in Düssel­dorf, Munich and Tokyo. Around 55 lawy­ers and legal specia­lists advise domestic and foreign compa­nies at the highest level on German and Japa­nese busi­ness law. With the focus groups Tran­sac­tions, HR.Law, Japan, Data.Law and Risk, the firm is geared towards provi­ding holistic advice to its clients. For more infor­ma­tion, visit www.arqis.com.

Dr. Ansgar Schleicher Managing Director Management Seed

Rhineland: Investors expand TechVision Fund I to 55 million euros

Aachen — The Tech­Vi­sion Fund I (TVF) will be incre­a­sed by anot­her 15 million euros. This means that the fund, which belongs to the S‑UBG Group, now has a total of 55 million euros in venture capi­tal avail­able for start-up finan­cing in the Aachen region and the Lower Rhine area. TVF’s exis­ting inves­tors [1] are joined by Spar­kasse Neuss, Stadt­mar­ken GmbH and Moder­ner Baube­darf GmbH as finan­cially strong private inves­tors from Aachen. “We are plea­sed to be able to support and further deve­lop inno­va­tive start-up teams from the western Rhine­land even more stron­gly through more capi­tal and new inves­tors,” says Bern­hard Kugel, CEO of S‑UBG AG and mana­ging direc­tor of the Tech­Vi­sion Fund.

Geogra­phi­cal expan­sion of finan­cing activities

“With Tech­Vi­sion Fund I, in addi­tion to seed invest­ments, we also aim to parti­ci­pate in subse­quent finan­cing rounds, Series A and B, of exis­ting and new port­fo­lio compa­nies,” Kugel empha­si­zed. The venture capi­tal fund specia­li­zes in finan­cing start-ups with a distinct opportunity/risk profile. “As a new inves­tor, we want to be a reli­able finan­cial part­ner for start-ups in the grea­ter Neuss area as well. For all our down-to-earth­ness, we are very open to new products and tech­no­lo­gies,” says Marcus Longe­rich, Deputy Board Member of Spar­kasse Neuss. “Toge­ther with the other capi­tal provi­ders, we have made it our goal to further promote start-up acti­vi­ties in our region. We also want to support the struc­tu­ral change that is necessary because of the plan­ned energy turnaround.”

Norbert Hermanns, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Aache­ner Stadt­mar­ken GmbH, adds: “Thanks to the diverse rese­arch land­s­cape in the western Rhine­land, the region is predesti­ned to produce forward-looking ideas. Howe­ver, in order to make these market­a­ble, inno­va­tive young entre­pre­neurs need appro­priate finan­cial resour­ces.” Manuel Nadenau, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Moder­ner Baube­darf GmbH, also sees the poten­tial: “An exci­ting new task lies ahead of us and we are plea­sed to be able to bring a breath of fresh air to the start-up scene toge­ther with the other inves­tors by suppor­ting young and inno­va­tive foun­ders from the region.”

Success stories made in the Rhineland

To date, the Seed Fonds Aachen and the Tech­Vi­sion Fonds have suppor­ted over 20 start-ups with capi­tal, stra­te­gic know­ledge and S‑UBG’s exten­sive network — inclu­ding taxy.io GmbH, a start-up dedi­ca­ted to provi­ding the basis for auto­ma­ted B2B tax advice using arti­fi­cially intel­li­gent soft­ware. In TVF’s port­fo­lio since 2019, the young company has already been able to grow rapidly through two rounds of finan­cing and further expand its offe­ring in terms of indus­try and geogra­phy. The Tech­Vi­sion Fund port­fo­lio also inclu­des the Düssel­dorf-based soft­ware deve­lo­per talent::digital and the mobi­lity plat­form MOQO — these start-ups have also achie­ved entre­pre­neu­rial mile­stones through indi­vi­dual finan­cing models. In the health and biosci­ence sector, the invest­ment enab­led the compa­nies PL BioSci­ence and Protem­bis to further deve­lop their products and bring them to market maturity.

Exit: SMP advises 1717 Life Science Ventures on sale of shares to Eckert & Ziegler

Berlin — SMP provi­ded legal advice to 1717 Life Science Ventures on the sale of its stake in drug deve­lo­per PENTIXAPHARM to Eckert & Zieg­ler Strah­len- und Medi­zin­tech­nik AG. In the course of the tran­sac­tion, Eckert & Zieg­ler acqui­red a direct majo­rity stake in PENTIXAPHARM, a joint venture between Scin­to­mics GmbH and 1717 Life Science Ventures GmbH.

With a solid history of buil­ding success­ful radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal star­tups, the 1717 team has perso­nal expe­ri­ence in all key func­tions of an early-stage radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal deve­lo­p­ment company. PENTIXAPHARM is deve­lo­ping a radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal combi­na­tion product against lymphoma and a number of rela­ted tumors. Toge­ther with an inter­nal trans­fer, Eckert & Zieg­ler says it will directly hold around 83% of the shares in the Würz­burg-based company after the closing. The manage­ment of PENTIXAPHARM, which holds the remai­ning 17% of PENTIXAPHARM shares, also recei­ved put opti­ons on the remai­ning shares as part of the share sale. More infor­ma­tion can be found here.

SMP had already advi­sed on the estab­lish­ment of the joint venture in 2019.

1717 LSV empowers scien­tists and inves­tors to trans­form early stage radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal projects into attrac­tive assets for licen­sing part­ners in industry.

About 1717 Life Science Ventures GmbH
By intro­du­cing early stage inves­tors to promi­sing new projects, 1717 LSV seeks to enable novel radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal thera­pies to traverse the early stages of manu­fac­tu­ring and clini­cal development.
We laun­ched 1717 LSV in March 2018 to trans­late scien­ti­fic results into pati­ents bene­fits by filling the opera­tio­nal and finan­cial gaps between the inven­tion of radio­phar­maceu­ti­cal subs­tan­ces and their first clini­cal trials. We are focu­sed, but not limi­ted, to onco­logy indi­ca­ti­ons to apply the full concept of Theranostics.

Advi­sor 1717 Life Science Ventures GmbH: SMP
Dr. Martin Scha­per, Partner

About SMP
SMP is a specia­list tax and commer­cial law firm opera­ting in the core areas of corpo­rate, funds, liti­ga­tion, tax and tran­sac­tions. SMP’s attor­neys and tax advi­sors repre­sent a wide variety of clients. These include emer­ging tech­no­logy compa­nies and family-run medium-sized enter­pri­ses as well as corpo­ra­ti­ons and private equity/venture capi­tal funds. Since its foun­da­tion in 2017, SMP has become one of the leading addres­ses for venture capi­tal, private equity and fund struc­tu­ring in Germany. The firm and its part­ners are natio­nally and inter­na­tio­nally ranked by JUVE, Best Lawy­ers, Legal 500, Focus, and Cham­bers and Part­ners. Today, SMP employs more than 60 expe­ri­en­ced lawy­ers, tax advi­sors and tax specia­lists in three offices in Berlin, Hamburg and Colo­gne. For more infor­ma­tion: www.smp.law and www.linkedin.com/company/smp.law.

Thomas Villinger Heilbronn Future Fund

MetisMotion reaches 1.5 million euros in second financing round

Munich — Munich-based tech startup Metis­Mo­tion has closed its second round of finan­cing and recei­ved anot­her €1.5 million in fresh capi­tal. As in the first finan­cing round in Decem­ber 2018, the High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF), BORN2GROW — a subsi­diary of the ZFHN Zukunfts­fonds Heil­bronn — and the SIEMENS Tech­no­logy Acce­le­ra­tor (STA) inves­ted. The fresh capi­tal will be used to prepare the market launch of the patent-protec­ted naXture actua­tor platform.

“MetisMotion’s core tech­no­logy is highly dyna­mic and light­weight, power­ful actua­tors for auto­ma­tion appli­ca­ti­ons. Metis­Mo­tion has deve­lo­ped an actua­tor plat­form (compa­ra­ble to servo­mo­tors) that offers unpre­ce­den­ted, tech­ni­cal possi­bi­li­ties. — Imagine being able to replace pneu­ma­tic or hydrau­lic solu­ti­ons with great power poten­tial in exis­ting instal­la­tion spaces with highly effi­ci­ent electri­cally opera­ted drives! This is usually not feasi­ble with conven­tio­nal electric motors,” says Patrick Fröse, Mana­ging Direc­tor of MetisMotion

Based on the outstan­ding power density and effi­ci­ency of Metis­Mo­tion actua­tors, a network of renow­ned natio­nal and inter­na­tio­nal pilot custo­mers has grown since the company was foun­ded in 2018, using Metis­Mo­tion solu­ti­ons to drive the sustainable elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of drive tasks.

With the capi­tal raised in the current finan­cing round, the tech­no­logy will now be made avail­able to a broad custo­mer group. The launch of the naXture plat­form is plan­ned for late summer.naXture enab­les users to quickly and easily confi­gure indi­vi­dual actua­tors for the smal­lest instal­la­tion spaces. Actua­tor geome­try, avail­able forces, speeds and travels, as well as the safety beha­vior are always based on the speci­fic requi­re­ments of the application.

“Metis­Mo­tion was already very close to the market and active in many appli­ca­tion areas at the time of the spin-off. Parti­cu­larly in the Heil­bronn region, the region of world market leaders, Metis­Mo­tion has already been able to win promi­sing custo­mers in the pilot custo­mer phase. The open­ness for inno­va­tion is obvious here and we are there­fore looking forward to the further roll out. We see great market oppor­tu­nities — not only natio­nally,” explains Thomas Villin­ger, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Zukunfts­fonds Heil­bronn.

“The elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of today’s inef­fi­ci­ent pneu­ma­tic and hydrau­lic actua­tors, parti­cu­larly in indus­trial auto­ma­tion, is an exci­ting growth oppor­tu­nity. Metis­Mo­tion can define a new segment here with its tech­no­logy! Exci­ting for inves­tors who are looking for disrup­tive tech­no­lo­gies and want to parti­ci­pate in their success,” comments Jens Baum­gärt­ner, Senior Invest­ment Mana­ger at High-Tech Grün­der­fonds.

“Metis­Mo­tion has proven with its launch custo­mers that it can design and manu­fac­ture high-perfor­mance actua­tors for the most deman­ding envi­ron­ments. We are there­fore convin­ced of the company’s poten­tial and look forward to conti­nuing to contri­bute to its success as an inves­tor and through our network within Siemens and beyond,” says Dr. Rudolf Frey­tag, CEO of Siemens Tech­no­logy Acce­le­ra­tor GmbH.

About Metis­Mo­tion
Actua­ting Inno­va­tions — Following the Genius of Nature. Accord­ing to this guiding principle, Metis­Mo­tion GmbH has been deve­lo­ping bio-inspi­red actua­tor systems since 2018. The company is a spin-off from the Siemens Group and sets new stan­dards for the sustainable elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of drives with maxi­mum energy effi­ci­ency. Based on highly inte­gra­ted micro-hydrau­lic circuits, Metis­Mo­tion is able for the first time to combine a parti­cu­larly high force density with ultra-dyna­mic move­ments in the smal­lest instal­la­tion spaces. At the same time, Metis­Mo­tion actua­tors gene­rally require only a quar­ter of the energy compa­red to pneu­ma­tic solu­ti­ons, for example. Custo­mers include natio­nal and inter­na­tio­nal manu­fac­tu­rers from the factory and process auto­ma­tion, robo­tics and mobi­lity sectors.
The Munich site is curr­ently home to in-house deve­lo­p­ment, manu­fac­tu­ring, marke­ting and sales.

About the ZFHN — Heil­bronn Future Fund

Since its foun­da­tion in 2005, ZFHN Zukunfts­fonds Heil­bronn has been one of the major venture capi­ta­lists in Germany. It prima­rily supports young, inno­va­tive tech­no­logy compa­nies that are loca­ted in the Heil­bronn area or are prepa­red to settle there in the short to medium term. The Future Fund is priva­tely finan­ced and has equity capi­tal in the hund­reds of milli­ons. It supports compa­nies with capi­tal, know-how and conta­cts in the Heil­bronn econo­mic region. The goal is to further deve­lop Heil­bronn into a very success­ful tech­no­logy loca­tion. This also inclu­des the estab­lish­ment and expan­sion of clus­ters (MedTech, BioTech, Clean­tech) locally.

Since its foun­ding in 2013, Heil­bronn-based BORN2GROW GmbH & Co. KG has been suppor­ting inno­va­tive tech­no­logy compa­nies in the seed and start-up phase. The seed fund supports young compa­nies by accom­pany­ing them from the proof-of-concept stage to market launch. This early-stage finan­cing enab­les fast-growing tech­no­logy-orien­ted start-up compa­nies to deve­lop their ideas and concepts. BORN2GROW, a subsi­diary of ZFHN Zukunfts­fonds Heil­bronn, coope­ra­tes with other venture capi­tal funds and busi­ness angels and makes fast and trans­pa­rent finan­cing decisions.Contact:
Zukunfts­fonds Heil­bronn GmbH & Co. KG. www.zf-hn.de

About the Siemens Tech­no­logy Accelerator
Siemens Tech­no­logy Acce­le­ra­tor GmbH is a subsi­diary of Siemens AG and has been success­fully commer­cia­li­zing inno­va­tive Siemens tech­no­lo­gies in appli­ca­ti­ons outside the stra­te­gic focus of Siemens busi­ness units for more than 20 years. This is done either by foun­ding venture capi­tal funded start-ups or by selling or licen­sing to estab­lis­hed companies.Contact:
Siemens Tech­no­logy Acce­le­ra­tor GmbH. www.siemens.com/sta

About High-Tech Gründerfonds
The seed inves­tor High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) finan­ces tech­no­logy star­tups with growth poten­tial. With a total volume of 892.5 million euros distri­bu­ted across three funds and an inter­na­tio­nal part­ner network, HTGF has already suppor­ted more than 500 star­tups since 2005. His team of expe­ri­en­ced invest­ment mana­gers and startup experts supports the young compa­nies with know-how, entre­pre­neu­rial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the hard­ware, soft­ware, life scien­ces and chemi­cals sectors. More than €1.9 billion in capi­tal has been inves­ted in the HTGF port­fo­lio by exter­nal inves­tors in around 1,400 follow-on finan­cing rounds to date. In addi­tion, the fund has now success­fully sold shares in 100 companies.
Inves­tors in the public-private part­ners­hip include the German Federal Minis­try for Econo­mic Affairs and Energy, KfW, the Fraun­ho­fer-Gesell­schaft and the busi­ness enter­pri­ses ALTANA, BASF, Bayer, Boehrin­ger Ingel­heim, B.Braun, Robert Bosch, BÜFA, CEWE, Deut­sche Post DHL, Dräger, Dril­lisch AG, EVONIK, EWE AG, Haniel, Hettich, Knauf, Körber, LANXESS, media + more venture Betei­li­gungs GmbH & Co. KG, PHOENIX CONTACT, Post­bank, QIAGEN, RWE Genera­tion SE, SAP, Schufa, Schwarz Gruppe, STIHL, Thüga, Vector Infor­ma­tik, WACKER and Wilh. Werhahn KG. www.htgf.de

traceless founders Dr. Anne Lamp and Johanna Baare (from left)

Seed funding for circular bioeconomy startup traceless materials

Hamburg — The two foun­ders Dr. Anne Lamp and Johanna Baare (photo) of Circu­lar Bioeco­nomy startup traceless mate­ri­als were able to convince three inves­tors in their first round of finan­cing: Planet A, High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) and b.value AG. Thus, traceless mate­ri­als secu­res a single-digit million invest­ment only seven months after its foundation.

Hamburg-based startup traceless mate­ri­als has deve­lo­ped a holistic sustainable mate­rial as an alter­na­tive for plastics and bioplastics. The inno­va­tive mate­rial is fully compost­a­ble — even when it unin­ten­tio­nally ends up in nature — and thus contri­bu­tes to solving global plastic pollu­tion. For the female foun­ding team, the funding is the corner­stone to bring their inno­va­tive new mate­rial to market to solve global plastic pollution.

85% of all plastics produ­ced world­wide are still in land­fills or floa­ting in our oceans. The result is signi­fi­cant envi­ron­men­tal and marine pollu­tion, with unima­gi­ned conse­quen­ces for humans, animals and our planet. One of the EU’s stated goals in its Plastics Stra­tegy is to ensure that all plastic pack­a­ging must be recy­clable or reus­able by 2030. For products that can easily end up in the envi­ron­ment, howe­ver, some­thing more is needed: mate­ri­als that can be degra­ded in nature in the shor­test possi­ble time and, above all, comple­tely. This is exactly what traceless mate­ri­als deals with. The specially deve­lo­ped, inno­va­tive tech­no­logy makes it possi­ble for the first time to produce storage-stable films, solid mate­ri­als and ultra-thin coatings from by-products of the agri­cul­tu­ral indus­try, which offer the advan­ta­ge­ous proper­ties of plastics and yet are fully compost­a­ble in nature.

While traceless mate­ri­als are made from bio-based raw mate­ri­als, they do not conflict with food produc­tion or contri­bute to land use change. Unlike conven­tio­nal (bio)plastics, they require no harm­ful addi­ti­ves, solvents or chemi­cals and have up to 87% lower CO2 emis­si­ons. Since they are neit­her chemi­cally modi­fied nor synthe­ti­cally poly­me­ri­zed, traceless mate­ri­als are not expec­ted to fall under the EU Plastics Direc­tive. Quali­ta­tively, the mate­ri­als are already compe­ti­tive with conven­tio­nal plastics and bioplastics. Produ­ced on an indus­trial produc­tion scale, they will also be able to compete with conven­tio­nal plastics in terms of price. This makes traceless a solu­tion for people all over the world, in all walks of life and income levels.

The foun­ders will use the invest­ment to build and expand the core team and to advance the construc­tion of a pilot plant. This will scale up produc­tion from labo­ra­tory scale to produce suffi­ci­ent mate­rial and bring the first pilot products to market in early 2022. Compa­nies from the consu­mer goods indus­try as well as pack­a­ging and plastics proces­sing compa­nies are already showing great inte­rest in the novel mate­ri­als. Legis­la­tive pres­sure, incre­a­sing custo­mer demand and the urgency to stop the nega­tive impact of plastic on the envi­ron­ment create a unique situa­tion for traceless to change the plastics market in a sustainable way.

“Based on Planet A’s scien­ti­fic impact assess­ment, we are confi­dent that traceless’ unique solu­tion has the poten­tial to make a signi­fi­cant contri­bu­tion to solving global plastic pollu­tion and sustainably trans­form the plastics market,” said Tobias Seikel, co-foun­der and part­ner at Planet A.

Dr. Anne Lamp, inven­tor of the traceless tech­no­logy, and Johanna Baare (photo) co-foun­ded traceless in Septem­ber 2020: “We are parti­cu­larly proud to have the support of expe­ri­en­ced venture capi­tal inves­tors who under­stand our deep tech solu­tion, share our mission and want to work with us to maxi­mize our posi­tive impact. We are confi­dent that their diverse expe­ri­ence will help us on our jour­ney and toge­ther we can quickly and safely scale our tech­no­logy to indus­trial produc­tion levels. Toge­ther with our custo­mers, we plan to bring the first products made from traceless mate­ri­als to market in early 2022.” www.traceless.eu

“We evalua­ted diverse compa­nies deve­lo­ping sustainable plastic alter­na­ti­ves, but none of them excel­led as traceless did in combi­ning a strong manage­ment team, supe­rior tech­no­logy with distinct compe­ti­tive advan­ta­ges, supe­rior mate­rial proper­ties and holistic sustaina­bi­lity. We are there­fore plea­sed to support the traceless team with our tech­ni­cal and opera­tio­nal exper­tise to drive the deve­lo­p­ment of the company and its products”, explains Corne­lia Bähr, Invest­ment Mana­ger at b.value

The close conta­cts between b.value and the German biotech indus­try open new doors for the team. For example, its network and port­fo­lio compa­nies include some of Germany’s most inno­va­tive deep-tech star­tups as well as expe­ri­en­ced bioeco­nomy experts. In addi­tion, High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) brings toge­ther several basic and specialty chemi­cals compa­nies invol­ved in poly­mers and ther­mo­plastic compo­si­tes that have inves­ted in its funds. In addi­tion to indus­try conta­cts and exper­tise, the consor­tium is in a posi­tion to make substan­tial follow-on invest­ments in later rounds.

“In the area of sustainable plastic alter­na­ti­ves, we are seeing a lot of inte­rest from the plastics proces­sing indus­try as well as from compa­nies in the consu­mer goods sector. In our view, traceless has the poten­tial to become a tech­no­logy and market leader in new mate­ri­als for pack­a­ging, for example,” explains Johan­nes Weber, Invest­ment Mana­ger at HTGF.

About traceless materials

traceless mate­ri­als GmbH is a circu­lar bioeco­nomy startup from Hamburg with a female foun­ding team that offers a holistic sustainable alter­na­tive to conven­tio­nal (bio)plastics with the mission to solve global plastic pollu­tion on land as well as in water.Their patent-pending tech­no­logy makes it possi­ble for the first time to use by-products of the agri­cul­tu­ral indus­try to produce shelf-stable films, solid mate­ri­als and ultra-thin coatings that offer the same bene­fi­cial proper­ties as plastics yet are fully degrad­able in nature. While traceless mate­ri­als are made from bioba­sed raw mate­ri­als, they do not conflict with food produc­tion and there­fore do not contri­bute to land use change. Unlike conven­tio­nal (bio)plastics, traceless comple­tely elimi­na­tes the addi­tion of harm­ful plasti­ci­zers or solvents and has up to 87% lower CO2 emis­si­ons. Since they are neit­her chemi­cally modi­fied nor synthe­ti­cally poly­me­ri­zed, traceless mate­ri­als are not expec­ted to fall under the EU Plastics Direc­tive. Manu­fac­tu­red on an indus­trial produc­tion scale, traceless mate­ri­als are also price compe­ti­tive with conven­tio­nal plastics, making them a solu­tion for people around the world, across all demo­gra­phics and income levels. Be part of the solu­tion, not pollution!

About Planet A

Foun­ded in 2020, Planet A is an impact inves­tor targe­ting for-profit star­tups that are making a measura­ble posi­tive impact on the planet while buil­ding scala­ble busi­nes­ses. Planet A part­ners with Euro­pean early-stage compa­nies that have the poten­tial to scale globally. The start-ups must contri­bute to a signi­fi­cant posi­tive change in at least one of the following four key areas: climate protec­tion, waste reduc­tion, resource conser­va­tion and/or biodi­ver­sity protec­tion. For its port­fo­lio compa­nies, Planet A offers impact calcu­la­tion support (scien­ti­fic impact measu­re­ment, fore­cas­ting and visua­liz­a­tion), the Planet A Network (a diverse, exclu­sive network of expe­ri­en­ced German and Euro­pean entre­pre­neurs) and the Below One Fund as a long-term finan­cing part­ner (early-stage invest­ments with inte­rest in follow-on rounds). Planet A’s mission is to make impact inves­ting the new normal. www.planet‑a.com

About b.value AG

With a focus on biotech­no­logy, life scien­ces and chemi­stry, b.value AG invests in start-ups in the pre-seed and seed phase in the D‑A-CH region. In addi­tion to its invest­ment, b.value AG actively supports its port­fo­lio compa­nies in their deve­lo­p­ment with its unique “company-buil­ding” approach. To this end, b.value AG combi­nes a high degree of tech­no­lo­gi­cal exper­tise in its opera­tio­nal team as well as more than 40 years of expe­ri­ence in the estab­lish­ment, manage­ment and deve­lo­p­ment of tech­no­logy compa­nies and the commer­cia­liz­a­tion of biotech­no­lo­gi­cal products in its manage­ment. It also bene­fits from the accu­mu­la­ted expe­ri­ence of its board of direc­tors in a wide variety of posi­ti­ons in busi­ness, acade­mia and indus­try, as well as an exten­sive network of scien­tists, execu­ti­ves, inves­tors, policy makers and indus­trial and acade­mic thought leaders. b.value AG sees its specia­liz­a­tion and deep under­stan­ding of the indus­try as the key to success. b.value AG is growing and further expan­ding its current port­fo­lio of seven attrac­tive investments.
www.bvalue-ag.com.

About High-Tech Gründerfonds

The seed inves­tor High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) finan­ces tech­no­logy start-ups with growth poten­tial. With a volume of around EUR 900 million spread across three funds and an inter­na­tio­nal part­ner network, HTGF has suppor­ted more than 600 start-ups since 2005. His team of expe­ri­en­ced invest­ment mana­gers and start-up experts supports the young compa­nies with know-how, entre­pre­neu­rial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the fields of digi­tal tech, indus­trial tech, life scien­ces, chemi­stry and rela­ted busi­ness areas. Almost EUR 3 billion in capi­tal has been inves­ted in the HTGF port­fo­lio by exter­nal inves­tors in more than 1,700 follow-on finan­cing rounds to date. In addi­tion, the fund has already success­fully sold shares in more than 120 companies.

Inves­tors in the public-private part­ners­hip include the German Federal Minis­try for Econo­mic Affairs and Energy, KfW Capi­tal, the Fraun­ho­fer-Gesell­schaft and the compa­nies ALTANA, BASF, Bayer, Boehrin­ger Ingel­heim, B.Braun, Robert Bosch, BÜFA, CEWE, Deut­sche Bank, Deut­sche Post DHL, Dräger, Dril­lisch AG, EVONIK, EWE AG, FOND OF, Haniel, Hettich, Knauf, Körber, LANXESS, media + more venture Betei­li­gungs GmbH & Co. KG, PHOENIX CONTACT, QIAGEN, RWE Genera­tion SE, SAP, Schufa, Schwarz Gruppe, STIHL, Thüga, Vector Infor­ma­tik, WACKER and Wilh. Werhahn KG. www.htgf.de/

The SEWTS Team (from left): Tim Doerks, Till Rickert and Alexander Bley

APEX Ventures, Bayern Kapital and HTGF invest in robotics start-up sewts

Munich / Bonn / Vienna — Arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence for the textile indus­try: The robo­tics start-up sewts has closed a seed finan­cing round tota­ling seven figu­res. sewts is deve­lo­ping a soft­ware-as-a-service (SaaS) solu­tion that helps indus­trial compa­nies auto­mate proces­ses in which easily deform­a­ble mate­ri­als are proces­sed, for example texti­les or films. Initi­ally, the tech­no­logy will be used in indus­trial laundry lines; in the long term, cross-sector appli­ca­ti­ons are plan­ned in the textile indus­try as well as in the high-tech sector. APEX Ventures, Bayern Kapi­tal and High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) parti­ci­pa­ted in the round. The exis­ting inves­tor Initia­tive for Indus­trial Inno­va­tors and a consor­tium of expe­ri­en­ced busi­ness angels have also confir­med their commitments.

In the manu­fac­tu­ring and proces­sing indus­tries, there are many robo­tics and AI-based solu­ti­ons for hand­ling solid, dimen­sio­nally stable raw mate­ri­als such as metals. The auto­ma­tion of manu­fac­tu­ring or assem­bly proces­ses in which, on the other hand, easily deform­a­ble mate­ri­als are proces­sed still poses enor­mous problems for compu­ters and image proces­sing programs today, because the demands on the requi­red compu­ting power are too great. Curr­ently avail­able robots and grip­ping systems can there­fore only inade­qua­tely perform such simple opera­ti­ons for humans, such as grip­ping a towel or piece of clot­hing. Foun­ded in 2019, Munich-based sewts GmbH and its appro­xi­mately 20 employees have there­fore deve­lo­ped inno­va­tive control and image proces­sing soft­ware that enab­les robots to predict the beha­vior of shape-unsta­ble mate­ri­als during grip­ping in real time based on intel­li­gent algo­rithms deve­lo­ped in-house. At the core of the tech­no­logy is a unique approach to genera­ting arti­fi­cial trai­ning data for AI, which is based on high-precision, so-called finite element method (FEM) simu­la­ti­ons. With the help of this novel approach, sewts can auto­mate a wide range of indus­trial proces­ses that were previously tech­ni­cally unfea­si­ble — such as the hand­ling of texti­les or carbon fiber and semi-finis­hed products.

Wide range of applications

Indus­trial laund­ries, for example, bene­fit from this tech­no­logy: indi­vi­dual steps, such as sorting dirty texti­les or placing laundry in folding machi­nes, still have to be carried out there by hand. Many laund­ries can hardly find employees for this stre­nuous work. With sewts, this step can be auto­ma­ted by robots. In the long term, this should incre­ase the produc­ti­vity of a textile washing line by up to 100 percent, while allowing the laundry to use its person­nel capa­ci­ties more effectively.

The areas of appli­ca­tion for this inno­va­tive tech­no­logy are constantly expan­ding and are already opening up comple­tely new produc­tion possi­bi­li­ties in the textile indus­try, for example in the manu­fac­ture of clot­hing. In the long term, the ambi­ti­ons of the three foun­ders Alex­an­der Bley, Tim Doerks and Till Rickert also include opening up other manu­fac­tu­ring sectors, for example in the proces­sing of films and foams. They plan to invest the new finan­cial resour­ces in the further deve­lo­p­ment of their soft­ware into a series product, the expan­sion of the deve­lo­p­ment team and the acqui­si­tion of medium and long-term inte­gra­tion and sales partners.

“We are very plea­sed to have convin­ced capi­tal-strong and tech­no­lo­gi­cally savvy inves­tors of our disrup­tive tech­no­logy. Their cross-indus­try market exper­tise will be of great help to us on our way to series produc­tion,” says sewts co-foun­der and co-mana­ging direc­tor Alex­an­der Bley.

Dr. Wolf­gang Neubert, part­ner at APEX Ventures, says: “We were parti­cu­larly impres­sed in the team by the combi­na­tion of high profes­sio­nal exper­tise, tech­ni­cal crea­ti­vity and the ability to think quickly into indus­trial appli­ca­ti­ons of the sewts tech­no­logy and derive their econo­mic impact.”

Dr. Georg Ried, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Bayern Kapi­tal, says: “sewts has the poten­tial to signi­fi­cantly simplify proces­ses in a wide range of indus­tries that could not previously be auto­ma­ted — a scala­ble tech­no­logy from which many compa­nies could bene­fit, parti­cu­larly in the indus­trial nation of Germany, but also beyond. An exci­ting inno­va­tion project in the field of robo­tics that we are happy to support in its upco­m­ing growth steps.”

Johan­nes Weber, invest­ment mana­ger at High-Tech Grün­der­fonds, says: “With deep lear­ning algo­rithms, sewts enab­les the sophisti­ca­ted hand­ling of texti­les with indus­trial robots for the first time. Through the scala­ble SaaS busi­ness model, we see high poten­tial to address broad user groups and look forward to suppor­ting the start-up on this path.”

About sewts
Foun­ded in 2019, Munich-based sewts GmbH is a provi­der of inno­va­tive control and image proces­sing soft­ware that pushes the bounda­ries of robo­tics in the proces­sing of easily deform­a­ble mate­ri­als. sewts has deve­lo­ped a unique tech­no­logy that uses high-precision finite element method (FEM) simu­la­ti­ons to effi­ci­ently train machine lear­ning algo­rithms. The intel­li­gent soft­ware solu­tion enab­les count­less appli­ca­ti­ons in indus­trial auto­ma­tion, such as the proces­sing of texti­les in indus­trial laund­ries or the produc­tion of clot­hing. The company is backed by APEX Ventures, Bayern Kapi­tal, High-Tech Grün­der­fonds, Initia­tive for Indus­trial Inno­va­tors and a number of highly expe­ri­en­ced busi­ness angels. www.sewts.de

About APEX Ventures
APEX Ventures is a Euro­pean venture capi­tal inves­tor focu­sing on deep-tech start-ups with unique IP and extra­or­di­nary market poten­tial. APEX Ventures has comple­ted nume­rous invest­ments with its funds in Europe as well as in the U.S., inclu­ding in the areas of AI for medi­cal appli­ca­ti­ons, quan­tum and laser tech­no­logy, auto­no­mous mobi­lity, compu­ter-based vision, and digi­tal foren­sics. APEX Ventures is in close colla­bo­ra­tion with the foun­ding teams to work toge­ther on go-to-market stra­te­gies and acce­le­rate inter­na­tio­nal growth. For an effec­tive selec­tion of talen­ted teams and their best possi­ble support, APEX Ventures is in close exchange with acade­mic insti­tu­ti­ons, entre­pre­neurs­hip programs and other inter­na­tio­nal VC part­ners. www.apex.ventures

About High-Tech Gründerfonds
The seed inves­tor High-Tech Grün­der­fonds (HTGF) finan­ces tech­no­logy start-ups with growth poten­tial. With a volume of around EUR 900 million spread across three funds and an inter­na­tio­nal part­ner network, HTGF has suppor­ted more than 600 start-ups since 2005. His team of expe­ri­en­ced invest­ment mana­gers and start-up experts supports the young compa­nies with know-how, entre­pre­neu­rial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the fields of digi­tal tech, indus­trial tech, life scien­ces, chemi­stry and rela­ted busi­ness areas. Almost EUR 3 billion in capi­tal has been inves­ted in the HTGF port­fo­lio by exter­nal inves­tors in more than 1,700 follow-on finan­cing rounds to date. In addi­tion, the fund has already success­fully sold shares in more than 120 compa­nies. www.htgf.de

Exit: Seed Fonds II Aachen sells shares in aquila biolabs

Aachen — The “Seed Fonds II für die Region Aachen GmbH & Co. KG” (Seed Fonds Aachen), toge­ther with KfW Banken­gruppe, Qiagen co-foun­der Dr. Jürgen Schu­ma­cher and Dr. Robert Huber, Profes­sor of Biopro­cess Engi­nee­ring, have sold their shares in the Aachen-based start-up aquila biol­abs GmbH to Scien­ti­fic Biopro­ces­sing, Inc. (SBI), subsi­diary of Scien­ti­fic Indus­tries, Inc. and deve­lo­per of opti­cal sensors for non-inva­sive real-time moni­to­ring of cell culture systems, was divested.

This ends a six-year invest­ment part­ners­hip that began in 2015 with the entry of Seed Fund II, the prede­ces­sor of Tech­Vi­sion Fund I, with a seven-figure invest­ment in the biotech­no­logy company. “It is grati­fy­ing that we can accom­pany such a great foun­ding team to a success­ful exit with our early-stage funds. I look forward to seeing the success story of aquila biol­abs conti­nue along this path,” says Dr. Ansgar Schlei­cher, CEO of the S‑UBG Group.

Expan­ding the platform’s reach worldwide

Foun­ded in Aachen at the end of 2014, aquila biol­abs GmbH deve­lops a plat­form of intel­li­gent sensors and soft­ware for the non-inva­sive moni­to­ring and analy­sis of biopro­ces­ses in the labo­ra­tory. With the help of the paten­ted measu­re­ment methods, rese­ar­chers can auto­ma­ti­cally moni­tor process para­me­ters and observe the cells as they grow, without having to take samples. This signi­fi­cantly redu­ces deve­lo­p­ment times and costs and sustainably impro­ves biopro­ces­ses in acade­mic and indus­trial rese­arch. The products of aquila biol­abs GmbH are now used by custo­mers in the phar­maceu­ti­cal, biotech­no­lo­gi­cal and chemi­cal indus­tries in over 25 countries.

“We are exci­ted to join SBI and expand the reach of our unique plat­form to biopro­cess scien­tists around the world,” says Daniel Grünes, co-foun­der of aquila biol­abs, who will assume the role of Vice Presi­dent of R&D and Opera­ti­ons at SBI. Jens Bayer, co-foun­der of aquila biol­abs, adds: “We would like to thank our inves­tor consor­tium once again for the very good and harmo­nious coope­ra­tion over the past years. Espe­cially the enor­mous wealth of expe­ri­ence of inves­tors like Mr. Schu­ma­cher and the Seed Fonds Aachen, who have frequently accom­pa­nied tech­no­logy compa­nies from the start-up phase to the exit, was very helpful for us.” aquila biol­abs will conti­nue to offer its products and services around the globe from its head­quar­ters in Baes­wei­ler, where the company curr­ently employs 16 people.

SBI expands presence in Europe

“When SBI was explo­ring the avail­able tech­no­lo­gies that could drive digi­tally simpli­fied biopro­ces­sing, aquila’s approach stood out as the most impres­sive,” said Rein­hard Vogt, chair­man of SBI and former vice presi­dent and member of the Sarto­rius AG Execu­tive Board. “In addi­tion to offe­ring a broad range of advan­ced sensors and data analy­tics tools, this stra­te­gic acqui­si­tion also adds new talent to our strong team and streng­t­hens our presence in Europe.”

About the S‑UBG Group

The S‑UBG Group, Aachen, has been the leading part­ner in the provi­sion of equity capi­tal for estab­lis­hed medium-sized compa­nies (S‑UBG AG) and young, tech­no­logy-orien­ted start-ups (Tech­Vi­sion Fonds I) in the econo­mic regi­ons of Aachen, Krefeld and Mönchen­glad­bach for over 30 years. S‑UBG AG invests in growth sectors; high quality of corpo­rate manage­ment is a key invest­ment criter­ion for the invest­ment company.

2020, Tech­Vi­sion Fonds I für die Region Aachen, Krefeld & Mönchen­glad­bach GmbH & Co. KG was laun­ched toge­ther with NRW.BANK, the savings banks of Aachen, Krefeld and Düren, Kreis­spar­kasse Heins­berg, Stadt­spar­kasse Mönchen­glad­bach, Nomain­vest, DSA Invest GmbH, inves­tors from the Dr. Babor Group and other private inves­tors. It provi­des around 40 million euros in seed capi­tal for the start-up scene in the region. Tech­Vi­sion Fonds I emer­ged from Seed Fonds III for the Aachen, Krefeld and Mönchen­glad­bach region. As an exten­sion of Seed Fund III, Tech­Vi­sion Fund I now seeks to parti­ci­pate in subse­quent finan­cing rounds (Series A/B) of exis­ting port­fo­lio compa­nies in addi­tion to seed invest­ments. The S‑UBG Group curr­ently holds stakes in just under 40 compa­nies in the region, giving it a leading posi­tion in the Spar­kas­sen-Finanz­gruppe. www.s‑ubg.de; www.techvision-fonds.de

German Autolabs

FO of Schwarzwälder Bote invests millions in German Autolabs

Berlin — BMH BRÄUTIGAM accom­pa­nies with Redstone the invest­ment of the Family Office of Schwarz­wäl­der Boten in the context of the recently closed finan­cing round of the AI- tech startup German Autol­abs. In addi­tion to Schwarz­wäl­der Boten as lead inves­tor and share­hol­der of some of Germany’s largest media groups, exis­ting inves­tors Target Part­ners, nbr Tech Ventures and Copa­rion are also parti­ci­pa­ting in the finan­cing round.

German Autol­abs, foun­ded in 2016 by serial entre­pre­neur Holger G. Weiss, specia­li­zes in voice assi­s­tance solu­ti­ons for profes­sio­nal drivers, couriers and deli­very people and became known for the first retro­fit­t­a­ble smart voice assi­stant for cars. The modu­lar voice AI plat­form enab­les compa­nies in the logistics indus­try to opti­mize ever­y­day work­flows and proces­ses by linking deli­very addres­ses, deli­very speci­fics, and route info from various data sources to further improve deli­very quality.

With the growing success of voice assi­stants, the need for verti­cal solu­ti­ons in the auto­mo­tive sector will incre­ase. Important diffe­ren­tia­tors in this area are data secu­rity, the very speci­fic use case in the vehi­cle, and the possi­bi­lity of addres­sing one’s own custo­mers directly. German Autol­abs does not see itself as a compe­ti­tor to hori­zon­tal play­ers such as Amazon or Google. His approach is verti­cally and comple­men­ta­rily integrable.

Holger G. Weiss, co-foun­der and CEO of German Autol­abs: “Since produc­tion cycles in the auto­mo­tive indus­try are tradi­tio­nally too long to itera­tively deve­lop and train voice AI, our retro­fit approach is one of the major advan­ta­ges of our stra­tegy.” The new multi-million funding will now be used to acce­le­rate the roll­out of the voice assi­s­tance platform.

The team of BMH BRÄUTIGAM has repeatedly acted along­side Redstone in the context of this invest­ment. Having already advi­sed on the invest­ments of venture capi­ta­list VR Ventures and the family office of Schwarz­wäl­der Boten in Right­Now at the end of last year, we are very plea­sed to be able to further streng­t­hen and expand the rela­ti­ons­hip with Redstone. www.bmh-partner.com

Consul­tant Redstone and the Family Office of Schwarz­wäl­der Boten: BMH BRÄUTIGAM, Berlin

Dr. Patrick Auer­bach, Edzard Rothen (both Venture Capital)

GoStudent receives 70 million euros in a Series B round

Vienna (ÖS) — GoStu­dent recei­ves 70 million euros in fresh money. Led by new inves­tor Coatue toge­ther with exis­ting part­ners Left Lane Capi­tal and DN Capi­tal, GoStu­dent has also success­fully comple­ted its next round of finan­cing — raising €70 million in fresh money. In 2020, the lear­ning assi­s­tance plat­form had been able to collect a total invest­ment of 13.3 million euros.

GoStu­dent with seat in Vienna could to its fifth birth­day its offer for on-line Nach­hilfe, which took its begin­ning from Vienna in the German-spea­king coun­tries, at the begin­ning of the year to five further Euro­pean markets expan­ded. The past Corona year has seen a boom in lear­ning plat­forms. The Berlin-based provi­der Gostu­dent also profi­ted, which is now rewar­ded with a large funding.

Exis­ting and new inves­tors have confi­dence in the digi­tal educa­tion startup’s conti­nued expo­nen­tial growth. This is inten­ded to further advance the inter­na­tio­na­liz­a­tion of GoStu­dent and streng­t­hen its presence in major tuto­ring markets such as France, Spain, Italy, the UK and Ireland.

Lear­ning assi­s­tance plat­form aims to become top player in Europe
Turkey and Greece, among others, will follow in the first half of 2021. In addi­tion, GoStu­dent will invest heavily in brand buil­ding and product impro­ve­ment. The ambi­tious goal: GoStu­dent wants to posi­tion itself as a top player in Europe for high-quality educa­tion and make it widely acces­si­ble. By the end of the year, the company plans to be active in at least 15 Euro­pean coun­tries and to expand the team to over 800 employees and more than 10,000 tutors.

 

Jan Phillip Kunz

BAYBG: Series A at HAPPYBRUSH for EUR 4 million.

Munich — happy­brush, the Munich-based start-up for electric tooth­brushes and sustainable oral hygiene products, secu­res around EUR 4 million in a Series A finan­cing round. BayBG as an exis­ting inves­tor and the family holding company of the Haniel Group as a newly acqui­red inves­tor parti­ci­pa­ted in the finan­cing. LUTZ | ABEL provi­ded compre­hen­sive advice to BayBG in this finan­cing round.

With over five million products sold, the young company is one of the fastest growing compa­nies in Europe, accord­ing to the Finan­cial Times, and is even ranked number 1 in the health sector. The start-up is also making a name for itself in terms of social commit­ment and sustaina­bi­lity and has, for example, been certi­fied as a sustainable B‑corporation and awar­ded a “very good” rating by Ökotest (Super­Green, 04/2021). With the fresh money from the inves­tors, happy­brush would like to posi­tion itself more stron­gly on the German market, for example with already announ­ced inno­va­tions such as the tooth­brush connec­ted to an app, as well as expand into neigh­bo­ring Euro­pean coun­tries with a basic product range.

Advi­sor BayBG: LUTZ | ABEL Rechts­an­walts PartG mbB
The consul­ting team around Jan-Phil­lip Kunz, LL.M. (lead) and Dr. Bern­hard Noreisch, LL.M. (both VC/M&A) consis­ted of Ute Schenn, Nina Theresa Mutsch­ler (both Commer­cial), Dr. Corne­lius Renner, Isabelle Hohl (both IP Law), Clau­dia Knuth, Xenia Verspohl (both Labor Law) and Chris­toph Rich­ter (Anti­trust Law).

Seven Senders founders Thomas Hagemann and Johannes Plehn (Photo: Seven Senders)

Vogel Heerma Waitz advises Seven Senders on EUR 32 million Series C round.

Berlin — Seven Senders, the leading deli­very plat­form for parcel ship­ping in Europe, looks back on a success­ful 2020 and has closed a Series C follow-on round of €32 million. As in the previous finan­cing round, the lead inves­tor is Digi­tal+ Part­ners, which toge­ther with btov is covering the finan­cing needs of the Berlin-based scale-up. Seven Senders will use the inflow of capi­tal for further tech­ni­cal expan­sion and to conti­nue its inter­na­tio­na­liz­a­tion stra­tegy. Among other things, there are plans to support the Euro­pean busi­ness of Chinese and US online retailers with central service hubs.

With its focus on cross-border ship­ping, Seven Senders bene­fi­ted greatly from the expan­sion of Euro­pean online retail­ing last year. Sales have doubled since March 2020. In line with its growth target, the company recently opened new coun­try offices in Amster­dam, Vienna and Madrid. In addi­tion, Seven Senders has been offe­ring a solu­tion for ship­ping to the UK since Febru­ary 2021, ensu­ring the smooth move­ment of goods after Brexit.

With its network of over 100 local premium parcel deli­very compa­nies, the Seven Senders deli­very plat­form opti­mi­zes retailers’ ship­ping proces­ses to all Euro­pean coun­tries. The entire network is acces­si­ble via a stan­dar­di­zed inter­face. With mini­mal comple­xity, the best possi­ble ship­ping in Europe is ensu­red for each package. This provi­des every ship­per with fast, reli­able and afford­a­ble deli­very, adap­ted to the needs of the end custo­mer. Excel­lent moni­to­ring, tracking, and ship­ping-rela­ted commu­ni­ca­ti­ons round out the custo­mer expe­ri­ence. The fact that the solu­tion has been well recei­ved by the market is demons­tra­ted by the nine-figure annual sales that have now been achie­ved, as well as well-known custo­mers such as ASOS, Shop Apotheke, Lilly­doo, Mister Spex, Juniqe, Flaconi, Westwing, Best Secret, food­spring, Limango and Thomann.

Dr. Johan­nes Plehn, foun­der and co-CEO of Seven Senders: “Last year, we consist­ently pursued our growth stra­tegy. Thanks to invest­ments in tech­no­logy and employees, we were able to help our custo­mers cope with the enor­mous incre­ase in demand in online retail­ing in the wake of the Corona pande­mic. We will conti­nue to take advan­tage of the posi­tive market deve­lo­p­ment and expand our services, also with a view to retailers outside the Euro­pean Econo­mic Area. We are placing maxi­mum focus on this development.”

Patrick Beitel, Mana­ging Direc­tor and Part­ner of Digi­tal+ Part­ners: “Seven Senders’ sophisti­ca­ted tech­no­logy and the high level of logistics exper­tise of all parties invol­ved convin­ced us from the very begin­ning. Our assess­ment has been more than confir­med over the past 18 months: In expan­ding its inter­na­tio­nal ship­ping, Seven Senders has taken advan­tage of the oppor­tu­nities that have arisen from the over­all posi­tive market deve­lo­p­ment. We are there­fore plea­sed to conti­nue to jointly drive Seven Senders’ growth to become Europe’s number one in parcel shipping.”

About Digi­tal+ Partners

Digi­tal+ Part­ners is a leading inves­tor and growth capi­tal specia­list focu­sed on Euro­pean and US tech­no­logy compa­nies; assets under manage­ment amount to €350 million. Digi­tal+ helps ambi­tious entre­pre­neurs build global tech­no­logy busi­nes­ses, provi­ding stra­te­gic advice and long-term finan­cial support to help them define and execute their growth plans. The fund focu­ses exclu­si­vely on B2B tech­no­logy compa­nies and lever­a­ges an exten­sive corpo­rate network to help port­fo­lio compa­nies enter new markets and build new part­ners­hips. For more infor­ma­tion, visit www.dplus.partners.

About btov

btov Part­ners, foun­ded in 2000, is a Euro­pean venture capi­tal firm focu­sed on digi­tal and indus­trial tech­no­lo­gies. btov’s network of entre­pre­neu­rial private inves­tors provi­des her unique exper­tise and access to non-obvious invest­ment topics and foun­ders. The btov Indus­trial Tech­no­lo­gies Fund focu­ses on hard­ware and soft­ware inno­va­tions with indus­trial use cases such as auto­ma­tion, robo­tics, data analy­tics, indus­trial AI, addi­tive manu­fac­tu­ring and quan­tum compu­ting. The btov Digi­tal Tech­no­lo­gies Fund focu­ses on star­tups in AI, fintech, SaaS, logistics and digi­tal market­pla­ces. btov has seen very early waves of inno­va­tion such as Machine Lear­ning or Fintech and is one of the most success­ful fund­ers of AI compa­nies in Europe.

The company, with offices in Berlin, Munich, St. Gallen and Luxem­bourg, mana­ges capi­tal of 510 million euros. The network of private inves­tors consists of 250 expe­ri­en­ced entre­pre­neurs and execu­ti­ves from all over Europe. Among the best-known invest­ments are Seven Senders, Black­lane, Data Artis­ans, DeepL, Face­book, Food­spring, ORCAM, Raisin, SumUp, Volo­co­p­ter and XING. www.btov.vc

About SEVEN SENDERS GmbH

SEVEN SENDERS is the leading deli­very plat­form for parcel ship­ping. The company connects ship­pers with its carrier network of more than 100 parcel deli­very compa­nies in Europe, enab­ling excel­lent local ship­ping as a compe­ti­tive advan­tage. With addi­tio­nal ship­ping services, such as claims center, insurance, returns portal and labels, SEVEN SENDERS makes inter­na­tio­nal ship­ping a simple matter. Auto­ma­ted ship­ping noti­fi­ca­ti­ons, tracking and moni­to­ring solu­ti­ons ensure a trans­pa­rent ship­ping process. Monthly reports and analy­ses enable data-based opti­miz­a­tion of inter­na­tio­nal ship­ping perfor­mance. Ship­pers get ever­ything from a single source and reduce comple­xity. www.sevensenders.com.

Advi­sor Seven Senders: Vogel Heerma Waitz

Dr. Clemens Waitz and Lorenz Frey, both partners.

About Vogel Heerma Waitz

Vogel Heerma Waitz is a Berlin-based law firm specia­li­zing in growth capi­tal, tech­no­logy and media. www.v14.de

Dr. Georg Ried

Bayern Kapital invests in digital health start-up Virtonomy

Lands­hut / Munich — Bayern Kapi­tal, the venture capi­tal company of the Free State of Bava­ria, is inves­ting in Virto­nomy as part of a seed finan­cing round. The digi­tal health startup is deve­lo­ping an inno­va­tive, data­base-driven soft­ware-as-a-service (SaaS) solu­tion for medi­cal device manu­fac­tu­rers. Manu­fac­tu­rers can use Virto­nomy to bring their products to market faster and more cost-effec­tively by simu­la­ting necessary tests or studies on the compu­ter during deve­lo­p­ment. The lead inves­tor in the seven-figure round is Dieter von Holtz­brinck Ventures. In addi­tion to Bayern Kapi­tal, the Initia­tive for Indus­trial Inno­va­tors and Plug and Play have also inves­ted in the young company from Munich’s WERK1.

Conven­tio­nal appro­val proces­ses for medi­cal devices are time-consuming and costly. They are also often linked to ethi­cally ques­tion­able expe­ri­ments on animals, and later on, risky human trials are often requi­red. The curr­ently more than 10 employees of Virto­nomy GmbH have there­fore set them­sel­ves the goal of making these appro­val proces­ses faster, more cost-effec­tive and safer. The company, foun­ded in 2019 and based in Munich’s WERK1, deve­lops data­base-based simu­la­tion solu­ti­ons for this purpose. The idea comes from the auto­mo­tive indus­try: instead of taking measu­re­ments while driving, a large part of the testing is done virtually. This allows more tests in less time and with more itera­ti­ons. Virto­nomy brings this principle to medi­cal tech­no­logy: The company builds virtual, custo­miz­able anato­mies of human bodies. Manu­fac­tu­rers of medi­cal devices (for example, implants) can use Virto­nomy to test their tech­no­lo­gies on this virtual pati­ent at all stages of deve­lo­p­ment — from the concept phase to precli­ni­cal evalua­tion to long-term moni­to­ring in widespread pati­ent use. In this way, Virto­nomy can help to reduce the deve­lo­p­ment time and costs of medi­cal tech­no­logy products. At the same time, thanks to the large number of tests perfor­med virtually, a smal­ler number of animal and human tests are necessary in further development.

Virto­nomy plans to invest the funds from the seed round in the further tech­no­lo­gi­cal deve­lo­p­ment of the product, the recruit­ment of addi­tio­nal employees and the expan­sion of the constantly expan­ding database.

“From the begin­ning, we wanted to deve­lop a solu­tion that not only had econo­mic bene­fits, but also social bene­fits,” explains Dr. Simon Sonn­tag, CEO of Virto­nomy. “The deve­lo­p­ment of new medi­cal tech­no­logy products conti­nues to be parti­cu­larly time-consuming and cost-inten­sive. That’s why young compa­nies like us that want to make a diffe­rence in this indus­try are also depen­dent on strong capi­tal support during the start-up and growth phase. We are there­fore deligh­ted to have attrac­ted a consor­tium of indus­try-expe­ri­en­ced inves­tors to our vision in Dieter von Holtz­brinck Ventures, Bayern Kapi­tal, Initia­tive for Indus­trial Inno­va­tors and Plug and Play.”

Dr. Georg Ried, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Bayern Kapi­tal, says: “In the digi­tiz­a­tion of health­care, there is still enor­mous poten­tial for deve­lo­ping inno­va­tive solu­ti­ons and buil­ding market leaders. Digi­tal health start-ups are inte­res­ting for venture capi­tal inves­tors because their products usually offer calcul­able deve­lo­p­ment times and good scala­bi­lity. In addi­tion, the appro­val process is some­what easier than for medtech hard­ware. Virto­nomy scores points in several ways with its inno­va­tive idea: a promi­sing, scala­ble product with the poten­tial to make the deve­lo­p­ment of medi­cal devices more effi­ci­ent, faster and safer. We see enor­mous growth poten­tial here.”

About Virto­nomy
Virto­nomy GmbH was foun­ded in Decem­ber 2019 by Dr. Simon Sonn­tag (CEO) and Wen-Yang Chu (CTO) in Munich, Germany. Virto­nomy is deve­lo­ping a cloud-based SaaS solu­tion for digi­ti­zing the design and conduct of clini­cal trials of medi­cal devices using virtual pati­ents based on a high volume of imaging, physio­lo­gi­cal and patho­lo­gi­cal data. The over­all goal here is to end animal and human testing in clini­cal trials through the use of data-based virtual pati­ents. Virto­nomy curr­ently employs about 10 people, combi­ning exper­tise in medi­cal engi­nee­ring, medi­cal image proces­sing, arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence, nume­ri­cal simu­la­tion and visua­liz­a­tion using exten­ded reality. www.virtonomy.io

About Bayern Kapital
Bayern Kapi­tal GmbH, based in Lands­hut, was foun­ded in 1995 as a wholly owned subsi­diary of LfA Förder­bank Bayern on the initia­tive of the Bava­rian state government. As the venture capi­tal company of the Free State of Bava­ria, Bayern Kapi­tal provi­des equity capi­tal to the foun­ders of inno­va­tive high-tech compa­nies and young, inno­va­tive tech­no­logy compa­nies in Bava­ria. Bayern Kapi­tal curr­ently mana­ges twelve invest­ment funds with an invest­ment volume of around 500 million euros. To date, Bayern Kapi­tal has inves­ted around 350 million euros of venture capi­tal in around 290 inno­va­tive tech­no­logy-orien­ted compa­nies from a wide range of sectors, inclu­ding life scien­ces, soft­ware & IT, mate­ri­als & new mate­ri­als, nano­tech­no­logy and envi­ron­men­tal tech­no­logy. As a result, more than 8,000 jobs have been perma­nently crea­ted in Bava­ria in sustainable compa­nies. www.bayernkapital.de

Hung Dang

VC fund La Famiglia leads financing in Y42

Berlin — Berlin-based y42 (form­erly known as Datos Intel­li­gence) has success­fully closed a $2.9 million seed funding round. Lead inves­tor was the venture capi­tal fund La Famiglia, other inves­tors were the co-foun­ders of Food­spring, Perso­nio and Petlab.

Foun­ded in 2020 and based in Berlin, startup y42 is a colla­bo­ra­tive data plat­form that brings toge­ther tech­ni­cal and non-tech­ni­cal users to load, cleanse, connect, visua­lize and share data. The all-in-one tool enab­les users to inte­grate hund­reds of data sources and build a scala­ble data infra­st­ruc­ture without programming. Y42 intends to use the funds to expand its go-to-market stra­tegy and for product deve­lo­p­ment. “As the amount of data has incre­a­sed, the systems for proces­sing data have also become more complex. Buil­ding a scala­ble data infra­st­ruc­ture is a night­mare for many compa­nies,” said Hung Dang, foun­der and CEO of y42. “We want to enable all compa­nies to get value from their data without inves­ting in expen­sive IT projects and in-house deve­lo­per teams.” y42 is the first scala­ble data plat­form that can be set up and used by less IT-savvy users.

Foun­der Dang has become famous for hosting a series of Great Gatsby-style parties. He foun­ded an event company and deve­lo­ped a global data plat­form for Even­tim to analyze events. He reinves­ted the money from that in his new startup, Y42, form­erly called Datos.

Based in Berlin,La Famiglia is a pan-Euro­pean early-stage VC fund that invests in tech­no­logy compa­nies that are empowe­ring or rethin­king large industries.

POELLATH provi­ded compre­hen­sive legal advice to La Famiglia in the context of the seed finan­cing round at y42 with the following Munich team:
Tobias Jäger (Part­ner, Lead, M&A/Private Equity/Venture Capi­tal), Dr. Sebas­tian Rosen­tritt, LL.M. (Senior Asso­ciate, M&A/Private Equity/Venture Capi­tal), Dr. Matthias Meier (Asso­ciate, M&A/Private Equity/Venture Capital)

About POELLATH + Partners
POELLATH is a market-leading inter­na­tio­nal busi­ness and tax law firm with more than 150 lawy­ers and tax advi­sors in Berlin, Frank­furt and Munich. We stand for high-end advice on tran­sac­tions and asset manage­ment. We offer legal and tax services from a single source. In our selec­ted and highly specia­li­zed prac­tice groups, we not only know the law, but also shape best prac­tice in the market toge­ther with our clients. Natio­nal and inter­na­tio­nal rankings regu­larly list our consul­tants as leading experts in their field.

SellerX expands financing round to 26 million euros

Berlin — SMP has again advi­sed the startup SellerX in the course of a capi­tal incre­ase. The total volume of the exten­ded finan­cing round amounts to appro­xi­mately 26 million euros and comes from lead inves­tor 83North as well as exis­ting inves­tors Felix Capi­tal, Cherry Ventures and other well-known busi­ness angels. Just a few months ago, SellerX announ­ced the success­ful comple­tion of a €100 million equity and debt finan­cing led by Sili­con Valley-based VC Triple­Point Capi­tal, among others.

In the mean­time, the Berlin-based company has bought up around 20 Amazon stores and is now plan­ning to use the fresh capi­tal to further expand its opera­ting busi­ness. At least 50 more stores are to follow in the next year and a half. SellerX was compre­hen­si­vely legally advi­sed by SMP part­ner Martin Scha­per toge­ther with Martyna Sabat and Matthias Kres­ser. The team had already provi­ded legal support to the FBA buyer in the previous finan­cing at the end of 2020 and also worked closely with Tomasz Krzy­wi­cki, Gene­ral Coun­sel of SellerX, on this transaction.

About SellerX

SellerX is a VC-funded startup that buys and builds out Amazon stores. With its growing and diver­si­fied port­fo­lio of FBA (Fulfill­ment by Amazon) sellers, SellerX aims to further opti­mize and grow its acqui­red busi­nes­ses to estab­lish sustainable consu­mer brands in the home, garden and pet supply cate­go­ries. Art supplies, DIY tools, nutri­tio­nal supple­ments, beauty products, baby products and fitness tools are also part of SellerX’s diverse port­fo­lio. The Berlin-based company was foun­ded in 2020 by Phil­ipp Trie­bel and Malte Horeyseck (photo ) and says it curr­ently employs around 120 people at its sites in Germany, the UK and the US.

About SMP

SMP is a specia­list tax and commer­cial law firm opera­ting in the core areas of corpo­rate, funds, liti­ga­tion, tax and tran­sac­tions. SMP’s attor­neys and tax advi­sors repre­sent a wide variety of clients. These include emer­ging tech­no­logy compa­nies and family-run medium-sized enter­pri­ses as well as corpo­ra­ti­ons and private equity/venture capi­tal funds. Since its foun­da­tion in 2017, SMP has become one of the leading addres­ses for venture capi­tal, private equity and fund struc­tu­ring in Germany. The firm and its part­ners are natio­nally and inter­na­tio­nally ranked by JUVE, Best Lawy­ers, Legal 500, Focus, and Cham­bers and Part­ners. Today, SMP employs more than 60 expe­ri­en­ced lawy­ers, tax advi­sors and tax specia­lists in three offices in Berlin, Hamburg and Colo­gne. www.smp.law

SMP advises early-stage investor 42CAP on investment in Allcyte

Berlin — SMP advi­sed early-stage inves­tor 42CAP on its invest­ment in Vien­nese biotech startup Allcyte. As lead inves­tor of an inter­na­tio­nal inves­tor consor­tium, 42CAP inves­ted toge­ther with Air Street Capi­tal (UK), Amino Collec­tive (Germany), VP Venture Part­ners (Switz­er­land) and PUSH Ventures (Austria) in the course of the growth financing.

Allcyte, which specia­li­zes in cancer therapy, has so far used its process to treat blood cancers. Howe­ver, accord­ing to the company, expan­sion to other cancer types is already plan­ned. “Instead of trying to extra­po­late infor­ma­tion from DNA, we’re taking actual cancer cells and testing directly on them to see what works,” Niko­las Krall, co-foun­der and CEO of Allcyte, told U.S. Fortune maga­zine. For the multi­tude of rapidly perfor­med “micro­ex­pe­ri­ments,” the startup uses AI image reco­gni­tion to deter­mine how cells respond to each drug.

“It is fasci­na­ting to see how already today in modern cancer therapy the use of arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence in inter­ac­tion with biome­di­cine can help to directly deter­mine and in this way maxi­mize the degree of effi­cacy of diffe­rent treat­ments and to speci­fi­cally advance drug deve­lo­p­ment,” says Jens Kretz­sch­mann. “We hope that this invest­ment has laid the foun­da­tion for further revo­lu­tio­nary succes­ses of the company in the fight against cancer,” adds Frede­rik Gärtner.

42CAP recei­ved legal and tax advice from an SMP team led by Frede­rik Gärt­ner, Jens Kretz­sch­mann, and Martyna Sabat. Previously, SMP assis­ted the venture capi­ta­list in a number of finan­cing rounds as well as in the launch of its second venture capi­tal fund generation.

About 42CAP
42CAP inves­tors Alex Meyer and Thomas Wilke invest very early in young compa­nies with global ambi­ti­ons. They built one of Europe’s largest SaaS compa­nies them­sel­ves with eCir­cle and sold the profi­ta­ble company to Tera­data (NYSE:TDC) in 2012. The 42CAP credo Peers amongst Entre­pre­neurs reflects their invest­ment approach to support data and tech­no­logy-driven busi­ness models, product-driven foun­ders and sustainable busi­ness deve­lo­p­ment. This back­ground is appre­cia­ted by foun­ders such as Nico­las Reboud (SHINE, Paris), Inigo Ijuan­te­gui (Ontruck, Madrid) and Alex­an­der Igels­böck (Adve­rity, Vienna).

Allcyte
Allcyte is a biotech startup based in Vienna. Using AI-assis­ted image analy­sis, Allcyte has deve­lo­ped a method to gene­rate action­able insights into the func­tio­nal acti­vity of drugs and drug candi­da­tes directly in viable, primary tissue samples from human cancer pati­ents at the single-cell level. The company thus enab­les physi­ci­ans to treat cancer pati­ents with the most promi­sing drug at the right time, when clas­si­cal gene­tics-driven precision medi­cine fails to provide precise answers. It also enab­les phar­maceu­ti­cal compa­nies to select the most promi­sing drug candi­da­tes for clini­cal deve­lo­p­ment in the right pati­ent popu­la­ti­ons to maxi­mize clini­cal trial success rates and pati­ent bene­fit. Allcyte star­ted in 2017 as a spin-off of the Vienna-based CeMM Rese­arch Center for Mole­cu­lar Medi­cine. Foun­ded by Berend Snij­der, Gregory Vladi­mer, Niko­laus Krall and Giulio Superti-Furga, the company curr­ently employs around 30 people.

About SMP
SMP is a specia­list tax and commer­cial law firm opera­ting in the core areas of corpo­rate, funds, liti­ga­tion, tax and tran­sac­tions. SMP’s attor­neys and tax advi­sors repre­sent a wide variety of clients. These include emer­ging tech­no­logy compa­nies and family-run medium-sized enter­pri­ses as well as corpo­ra­ti­ons and private equity/venture capi­tal funds. Since its foun­da­tion in 2017, SMP has become one of the leading addres­ses for venture capi­tal, private equity and fund struc­tu­ring in Germany. The firm and its part­ners are natio­nally and inter­na­tio­nally ranked by JUVE, Best Lawy­ers, Legal 500, Focus, and Cham­bers and Part­ners. Today, SMP employs more than 60 expe­ri­en­ced lawy­ers, tax advi­sors and tax specia­lists in three offices in Berlin, Hamburg and Colo­gne. www.smp.law

Consul­tant 42CAP: SMP
Dr. Frede­rik Gärt­ner (Corpo­rate), Asso­ciate Partner
Jens Kretz­sch­mann (Taxes), Partner
Dr. Martyna Sabat (Corpo­rate), Associate

Magenta Partners leads $6 million round for indoor cycling Motosumo

Copen­ha­gen, Denmark — London-based SME growth inves­tor Magenta Part­ners today announ­ced that it has led a major Series A funding round for Moto­s­umo, a fast-growing at-home indoor cycling plat­form that offers live inter­ac­tive clas­ses from any bike. Magenta led the finan­cing round with parti­ci­pa­tion from exis­ting investors.

Tom Matthews, mana­ging part­ner of Magenta, says their exten­sive evalua­tion iden­ti­fied Moto­s­umo as a unique offe­ring in a crow­ded market. “Our team of experts has reviewed nume­rous soft­ware and hard­ware plat­forms in the Connec­ted Fitness space over the past 18 months. We believe Moto­s­umo is an outstan­ding offe­ring capa­ble of leading the evolu­tion in the home fitness market. It is the only plat­form of its kind that is hard­ware agnostic, which opens up signi­fi­cant growth oppor­tu­nities across geogra­phies,” said Matthews, whose team at Magenta has an exten­sive back­ground in fitness, inclu­ding previous invest­ments in LA Fitness, The Gym Group, Pure Gym and Viva Gym.

Moto­s­umo, a Danish fit-tech company foun­ded in 2015, offers a global program of live indoor cycling clas­ses with world-class inst­ruc­tors. Motosumo’s inno­va­tive tech­no­logy means users can join the plat­form from home, with any bike and a cell phone or tablet. Even the simp­lest setup can be connec­ted to enjoy a fully inter­ac­tive class.

With subscrip­ti­ons star­ting at just $12.99 per month, Moto­s­umo offers an afford­a­ble alter­na­tive to the many expen­sive play­ers in the market that require consu­mers to purchase equip­ment and wait weeks for deli­very to get started.

“Immediate access, an inter­ac­tive expe­ri­ence and global reach are important factors for growth, and Moto­s­umo has all three,” says Moto­s­umo co-foun­der and CEO Kres­ten Juel Jensen. “Our plat­form works with any bike, so users don’t have to invest in new equip­ment and can access a work­out immedia­tely. Moto­s­umo cour­ses include inter­ac­tive games with live fitness metrics, and our trai­ners inter­act with parti­ci­pants in real time. We are exci­ted about the part­ners­hip with Magenta. Their invest­ment and stra­te­gic vision and support will help drive our expe­ri­ence and expansion.”

“Even before the COVID pande­mic, consu­mer demand for home exer­cise opti­ons was growing. The past year has drasti­cally chan­ged the land­s­cape of the fitness indus­try. Connec­ted fitness at home has become a major bene­fi­ciary, and Moto­s­umo was already ahead of the curve and uniquely posi­tio­ned to drive rapid adop­tion of our home exer­cise solu­tion,” said Juel Jensen.

This round of Series A funding will allow Moto­s­umo to double the number of its trai­ners on four conti­nents (Europe, North America, Asia and Austra­lia), expand its tech­ni­cal team and signi­fi­cantly incre­ase its marke­ting efforts. Magenta typi­cally invests between GBP5 million and GBP20 million in each oppor­tu­nity. Your invest­ment in Moto­s­umo is the first step in a possi­ble long-term, working partnership.

Magenta Mana­ging Part­ner Chase Emson already makes Moto­s­umo clas­ses part of his daily work­out at home, “Moto­s­umo is a fantastic expe­ri­ence. It is the only real live and inter­ac­tive offer for those who have an indoor bike at home. Having taken some of the clas­ses, I can say from perso­nal expe­ri­ence that Moto­s­umo is fun and enter­tai­ning — and I’m most exci­ted about the results I’m getting from my trai­ning,” Emson said.

Inves­tors in Moto­s­umo from previous rounds include Danish venture capi­tal fund Promen­tum Equity Part­ners and PreSeed Ventures, one of Denmark’s largest inno­va­tion incubators.

About Moto­s­umo

Moto­s­umo is a live inter­ac­tive plat­form for home cycling cour­ses that works with any statio­nary bike. The company was foun­ded by a Danish team of engi­neers and astro­phy­si­cists who harnes­sed the power of smart­phone motion sensors to gene­rate live fitness metrics, such as cadence, on each bike. They deve­lo­ped an app to make a fun, inter­ac­tive work­out and commu­nity expe­ri­ence acces­si­ble to almost anyone. Early on, Moto­s­umo became a popu­lar main­stay in gyms and fitness centers. In response to the growing demand for at-home work­out opti­ons, Moto­s­umo has evol­ved the plat­form for indi­vi­dual users and part­ne­red with a network of world-class trai­ners to create a global offe­ring of daily live clas­ses. For just $12.99 per month, anyone can enjoy the same intense, inter­ac­tive fitness expe­ri­ence at home. To turn any bike into a world-class work­out expe­ri­ence, visit www.motosumo.com.

About Magenta Partners

Magenta Part­ners LLP is a UK-based private equity advi­sory firm foun­ded in 2008, specia­li­zing in entre­pre­neur-led growth invest­ments. Since its incep­tion, Magenta has inves­ted in consu­mer-focu­sed compa­nies such as Pure Gym, JoJo Maman Bebe, Maker&Son and North Ameri­can Guitar Company. A criti­cal element of Magenta’s invest­ment style is the ability to work with manage­ment teams to achieve align­ment around a common goal. Magenta funds are backed by success­ful entre­pre­neurs, and the manage­ment team itself brings expe­ri­ence in running and growing success­ful venture-backed compa­nies. www.magentapartners.com

Promen­tum Equity Partners

Promen­tum Equity Part­ners is a Danish private equity fund estab­lis­hed in 2016 as a colla­bo­ra­tion between Promen­tum Capi­tal and Alter­na­tive Equity Part­ners. www.promentumequity.dk

PreSeed Ventures

For more than two deca­des, PreSeed Ventures has scou­ted, mento­red and funded Danish success stories such as Vivino, Trust­pi­lot and Lunar. www.preseedventures.dk

Fixico closes €12 million Series A financing round

Berlin — Fixico, Europe’s leading digi­tal car repair plat­form, announ­ces a €5 million expan­sion of its Series A funding round, closing it with a total of €12 million. The round is led by Auto­tech Venture. All exis­ting inves­tors, inclu­ding Fin Capi­tal, conti­nue to actively parti­ci­pate. In addi­tion, Fixico welco­mes Madrid-based Mundi Ventures to its inves­tor base. To date, Fixico has raised a total of €19.3 million. The new funds will acce­le­rate Fixico’s product deve­lo­p­ment, streng­t­hen its presence in Germany and drive its expan­sion in Europe.

Digi­ta­liz­a­tion boost for the proces­sing of car repairs
Fixico is a fast-growing and award-winning Dutch tech company that aims to rede­fine the auto repair indus­try. In this field, which reflects a 120 billion euro market in Europe alone, time seems to have stood still and disrup­tion is long over­due. The repair process is time-consuming, inef­fi­ci­ent, and invol­ves nume­rous phone calls, emails, and physi­cal inspec­tions that are always the same — no matter what type of damage or vehi­cle is invol­ved. Howe­ver, modern vehi­cles are beco­m­ing more and more tech­ni­cally sophisti­ca­ted, making repairs more complex. Not every work­shop can do that. It there­fore takes a tailo­red approach to find the right workshop.

Fixico provi­des a digi­tal plat­form that makes vehi­cle damage repair seam­less for drivers, insu­rers and fleet owners, and enab­les intel­li­gent match­ma­king for diffe­rent types of vehi­cle damage and suita­ble repair shops. The plat­form provi­des a seam­less and much more effi­ci­ent repair assign­ment process. Custo­mers can thus quickly and easily iden­tify the best repair shop for their claim, taking into account criti­cal factors such as avai­la­bi­lity, exper­tise and price.

Fixico curr­ently works with over 150 leading compa­nies in the fleet, rental, insurance and leasing indus­tries. Through a cross-border and unique market­place network, the plat­form provi­des access to more than 2,500 work­shops. Fixico is curr­ently repre­sen­ted in six coun­tries: Germany, the Nether­lands, Belgium, Luxem­bourg, France and South Africa.

“Last year was tough for the auto repair indus­try. But even in the midst of a global pande­mic, Fixico was able to grow by 300%. This Series A round expan­sion gives us enough momen­tum to conti­nue our growth trajec­tory and become the digi­tal leader of the auto repair indus­try in Europe. In the next quar­ter, we will launch in three more Euro­pean coun­tries: Italy, Austria and Denmark. In all likeli­hood, we will add three to five more coun­tries to our expan­sion plans after that, with the UK and Spain at the top of our wish list. We are very exci­ted to now have Mundi Ventures on board, as they have tremen­dous know­ledge and access to a vast and cross-border insurance and mobi­lity network,” says Derk Rood­huy­zen de Vries, CEO and co-foun­der of Fixico.

Simon Roth­man beco­mes new member of the Execu­tive Board
Upon comple­tion of the finan­cing round, Simon Roth­man will be appoin­ted to Fixico’s Super­vi­sory Board. Roth­man is known as an early pioneer of online market­pla­ces and network effect compa­nies. He joined eBay when it was still a small U.S. auction house for collec­ti­bles and helped scale the company to nearly 200 million users and gene­rate more than $40 billion in annual revenue.

During his time at eBay, Roth­man foun­ded eBay Motors. Within six years, he built eBay Motors into a global company with annual sales of 14 billion U.S. dollars and made it the world’s number one auto­mo­tive marketplace.

Simon Roth­man is a long-time angel inves­tor and venture capi­ta­list with a passion for market­pla­ces and mobi­lity. Roth­man served as an early stage board member at Tesla, Cargu­rus, Convoy and Nuro. He is also an advi­sor and/or angel inves­tor in success­ful tech­no­logy compa­nies such as Lyft, Lime, Getaround, Aurora, Fiverr and Poshmark.

“During my time at eBay Motors as well as at Tesla, I perso­nally deve­lo­ped a great passion for market­pla­ces and mobi­lity. It is now a unique oppor­tu­nity to find a company as promi­sing as Fixico, which sits at the inter­sec­tion of the market­place and the mobi­lity sector. From my perspec­tive, Fixico’s use of network dyna­mics to connect repair shops with vehi­cle owners has the poten­tial to funda­ment­ally change the auto repair indus­try,” explains Simon Roth­man as a newly appoin­ted member of Fixico’s super­vi­sory board.

About Fixico
Fixico (https://fixico-business.com/de) is Europe’s leading repair manage­ment plat­form for car damage. Since its foun­ding in 2014 by Derk Rood­huy­zen de Vries, the portal has helped car owners and busi­ness part­ners quickly and conve­ni­en­tly find the ideal repair shop for their car and save on repair costs. Fixico thus digi­ti­zes and simpli­fies the entire repair manage­ment process for fleet, car rental, insurance and leasing compa­nies. Working with over 150 leading compa­nies and a network of more than 2,500 master craft­s­men, the Dutch company offers stress-free, fast repairs and compe­ti­tive prices. More than 200,000 claims have already been sett­led via the compa­ri­son plat­form throughout Europe. The 60-strong team already enab­les hund­reds of compa­nies — inclu­ding part­ners such as Lease­Plan, AXA, Avis, Sixt and Aon — to handle car repairs more effi­ci­ently and cost-effec­tively in 6 coun­tries (Germany, the Nether­lands, Belgium, Luxem­bourg, France and South Africa) and conti­nues to expand across Europe. Fixico is suppor­ted by a group of leading investors.

About Mundi Ventures
Mundi Ventures is a venture capi­tal firm that invests prima­rily in tech­no­logy-based compa­nies with B2B busi­ness models during the A or B round. The VC’s head­quar­ters are loca­ted in Madrid. There are bran­ches in Barce­lona, London and Seattle.

Sven Erger and Thomas Bernik

Rebike Mobility closes €10 million Series B financing

Munich — Munich-based Rebike Mobi­lity GmbH, opera­tor of two e‑bike plat­forms, has success­fully closed its Series B finan­cing round. BayBG Baye­ri­sche Betei­li­gungs­ge­sell­schaft was invol­ved as lead inves­tor. The exis­ting inves­tors Vorwerk Ventures and STS Ventures also parti­ci­pa­ted in the Series B round. The debt portion was arran­ged by Matu­rus Finance.
image002.jpg

With the fresh capi­tal, the startup, which was foun­ded in 2018 and more than doubled its annual reve­nue again in 2020 to nearly €7 million, is further expan­ding its service and deve­lo­ping its plat­forms and e‑bike port­fo­lio. The company sells used premium e‑bikes in mint condi­tion via the plat­form www.rebike.de.

Via the portal www.ebike.abo.de, the company rents out new brand-name e‑bikes or S‑pedelecs for three to 18 months.

“With the eBike subscrip­tion, we enable people to get on or switch to an e‑bike. Also our offer of cheap used e‑bikes on rebike.de meets the nerve of the time. As a result, our busi­ness has deve­lo­ped very dyna­mi­cally. Now is the right time to further expand our market posi­tion and scale our busi­ness. With BayBG, we have gained anot­her finan­cially strong inves­tor who will accom­pany us in the long term,” explain Rebike foun­ders Thomas Bernik and Sven Erger (photo).

“We see enor­mous poten­tial in the company, the market and the product,” says Otto Hopf­ner, Senior Invest­ment Mana­ger at BayBG, describ­ing the reasons for the invest­ment. “The facts speak for them­sel­ves. Accord­ing to the German Bicy­cle Indus­try Asso­cia­tion (ZIV), nearly two million electric bicy­cles were sold in 2020, 43.4 percent more than in the previous year. E‑bikes are the means of trans­por­ta­tion of the moment, as more and more people want to get around sustainably and healt­hily. We are very much looking forward to shaping tomorrow’s mobi­lity toge­ther with Rebike and making e‑bikes avail­able to everyone.”

Dirk Meurer, Mana­ging Part­ner of Vorwerk Ventures, also sees his invest­ment confir­med: “Rebike Mobi­lity has been able to conti­nuously and very success­fully build up and expand its busi­ness since it was foun­ded just over two years ago. An outstan­ding perfor­mance by the entire team, which impres­si­vely proves that Rebike is on the right track with its corpo­rate stra­tegy. We conti­nue to see strong poten­tial and are there­fore happy to be part of the Series B round.”

About Rebike Mobi­lity GmbH

Rebike Mobi­lity GmbH, Munich is an e‑mobility startup foun­ded in 2018. The inno­va­tive busi­ness model offers the right solu­tion for every need: used, as-new premium eBikes (www.rebike1.de) at a reason­able price, an attrac­tive eBike subscrip­tion model (www.ebike-abo.de) and eBike rental stati­ons (www.rebike-verleih.de) in popu­lar vaca­tion regi­ons. The product port­fo­lio exclu­si­vely inclu­des e‑bikes and S‑pedelecs from leading brand manu­fac­tu­rers. The company’s own value chain means that the life cycle of each indi­vi­dual e‑bike can be signi­fi­cantly exten­ded, making an important contri­bu­tion to climate protec­tion. Foun­ders and mana­ging direc­tors are Sven Erger, long-time moun­tain biker and connois­seur of the bike scene, and Thomas Bernik, success­ful serial entre­pre­neur. www.rebike.de.

About BayBG Venture Capital

With its venture capi­tal team, BayBG Baye­ri­sche Betei­li­gungs­ge­sell­schaft mbH, Munich (BayBG), invests in Series A finan­cing rounds and later in tech start-ups. Curr­ently, the venture capi­tal port­fo­lio consists of over 30 tech­no­logy compa­nies. With an inves­ted volume of 310 million euros, BayBG is one of the largest invest­ment compa­nies in Germany. In addi­tion to venture capi­tal for start-ups, BayBG offers medium-sized compa­nies equity capi­tal (equity and / or mezza­nine) across all company phases and finan­cing occa­si­ons. BayBG thus enab­les the imple­men­ta­tion of inno­va­tion and growth projects, the opti­miz­a­tion of the capi­tal struc­ture or the regu­la­tion of company successions.

Advi­sor BayBG: LUTZ | ABEL Rechts­an­walts PartG mbB
The consul­ting team around Jan-Phil­lip Kunz, LL.M. (lead manage­ment) consis­ted of Dr. Bern­hard Noreisch, LL.M. (both VC / M&A, Munich), Dr. Corne­lius Renner (IT Law and Data Protec­tion, Berlin), Clau­dia Knuth and Xenia Verspohl (both Labor Law, Berlin), Ute Schenn and Nina There­sia Mutsch­ler (both Commer­cial, Stutt­gart) and Katha­rina Kendziur (Regu­la­tory, Munich).

Cryptology Asset Group: Fintech Nextmarkets raises 25 million euros

Colo­gne, Germany — Trading app Next­mar­kets has raised around €25 million ($30 million) in anot­her finan­cing (FinanceFwd repor­ted). The round was led by publicly traded Cryp­to­logy Asset Group, Europe’s largest publicly traded crypto invest­ment company, in which Chris­tian Anger­mayer is a share­hol­der. Accord­ing to the commer­cial regis­ter, the invest­ment company Finlab AG has also inves­ted again.

With the fresh capi­tal, the Colo­gne-based company intends to grow further in a market that has so far been led prima­rily by the U.S. model Robin­hood and its German coun­ter­part Trade Republik.

Next­mar­kets was foun­ded in 2014 by the two brothers Manuel and Domi­nic Heyden. The startup first made a name for itself by having profes­sio­nal traders give invest­ment tips via the app. Mean­while, the startup has a secu­ri­ties trading bank license and offers about 7,000 stocks and 1,000 ETFs that can be traded via the app free of charge.

With stock market coaches, the Colo­gne-based company wants to stand out from the compe­ti­tion. Paypal co-foun­der Peter Thiel had already inves­ted in Next­mar­kets in 2016. The enter­prise value is esti­ma­ted at appro­xi­mately 58 million euros ($70 million). For compa­ri­son: Robin­hood is about to go public, Trade Repu­blic is valued at around 600 million euros. For Next­mar­kets is curr­ently said to have about 40 employees.

Insurance startup Hepster raises around 8.4 million euros

Rostock — In its Series A, Rostock-based insurance startup Heps­ter has recei­ved about €8.4 million ($10 million). New entrants are London-based fintech VC Element Ventures and Paris-based sumup inves­tor Seven­ven­ture Part­ners. The former share­hol­ders Mittel­stän­di­sche Betei­li­gungs­ge­sell­schaft Meck­len­burg-Vorpom­mern and GPS Ventures have also joined in.

The startup by Hanna Bach­mann, Chris­tian Range and Alex­an­der Hornung, which is just under five years old, offers insurance, such as acci­dent or theft insurance, to more than 700 corpo­rate custo­mers from the mobi­lity, sports, electri­cal equip­ment and travel sectors.

Since its launch in spring 2017, the Rostock-based insur­tech has already convin­ced more than 700 part­ners and around 70,000 custo­mers of its insurance products.

heps­ter deve­lops indi­vi­dual and tailor-made insurance products based on the needs of today’s people as well as the busi­ness models of our part­ners. Special atten­tion is paid by heps­ter to flexi­ble and trans­pa­rent contract design as well as uncom­pli­ca­ted insurance conclu­sion in order to ensure an opti­mal custo­mer expe­ri­ence. Close coope­ra­tion with various reinsu­rers enab­les fast product solu­ti­ons tailo­red to the needs of the coope­ra­tion part­ners. On the one hand, insurance poli­cies can be booked in the online store with just a few clicks and comple­tely digi­tally. On the other hand, the insurance products can be inte­gra­ted seam­lessly and comple­tely digi­tally into exis­ting and new proces­ses with the help of various interfaces.

About Element Ventures LLP
Element Ventures LLP, based in London, UK, opera­tes as a venture capi­tal company. The Company provi­des invest­ment in early-stage, high poten­tial, and growth start-up companies.

POELLATH advises ABN AMRO VC on Penta financing round

Amsterdam/ Munich/ Berlin — Digi­tal busi­ness banking plat­form Penta Fintech GmbH (“Penta”) has closed a top-up Series B+ finan­cing round. Lead inves­tor was ABN AMRO Ventures along­side exis­ting inves­tors finleap, HV Capi­tal, RTP Global, Presight Capi­tal, S7V and VR Ventures.

This is the third round of finan­cing after Penta closed two rounds of finan­cing with new inves­tors last year. The total invest­ment now amounts to EUR 30 million.

Penta is the digi­tal plat­form for busi­ness banking for small and medium-sized enter­pri­ses as well as solo self-employed and free­lan­cers. Within minu­tes, busi­nes­ses can digi­tally apply for a busi­ness account and receive a German IBAN, debit cards, digi­tal expense manage­ment and many other finan­cial solu­ti­ons. As an offi­cial DATEV market­place part­ner, Penta also enab­les the trans­fer of accoun­ting data via the offi­cial inter­face to DATEV. Penta says it has well over 25,000 custo­mers. The company is head­quar­te­red in Berlin with anot­her office in Belgrade.

ABN AMRO Ventures is the corpo­rate venture capi­tal arm of ABN AMRO Bank in the Nether­lands, head­quar­te­red in Amster­dam. The focus is on stra­te­gic invest­ments in tech­no­logy compa­nies that are rele­vant for the bank and the digi­tal trans­for­ma­tion of its products and services. The fund has a total volume of EUR 150 million and a port­fo­lio of now 15 compa­nies, inclu­ding 1 success­ful exit.

Advi­sors to ABN AMRO Ventures: POELLATH P+P Partners

Chris­tian Tönies, LL.M. Eur. (Part­ner, M&A/VC, Munich/Berlin)
Dr. Sebas­tian Gerlin­ger, LL.M. (Coun­sel, Lead Part­ner, M&A/VC, Munich/Berlin)
Markus Döll­ner (Senior Asso­ciate, M&A/VC, Munich)

Insight Ventures: $270 million in new capital for Plume, market value over 1.35 billion

Palo Alto — Plume®, the company behind the smart home service offe­rings of more than 170 inter­net service provi­ders (CSPs) in over 22 million homes world­wide, today announ­ced the closing of a $270 million mino­rity invest­ment by global venture capi­tal and private equity firm Insight Part­ners. This Series E finan­cing round brings the $1.35 billion valued company’s equity finan­cing to a total of $397 million.

Plume was foun­ded on the premise that a device is only as smart as the network it is connec­ted to. In this respect, the exis­ting smart home services show clear defi­cits. Plume’s goal is not just to improve WLAN coverage through decen­tra­li­zed hard­ware, but to rely on an enti­rely diffe­rent solu­tion: a compre­hen­sive set of cloud-driven front-end services deli­ve­red over an intel­li­gent, soft­ware-defi­ned network. The Plume Home­Pass™ front-end services suite provi­des adap­tive and self-opti­mi­zing Wi-Fi throughout the home, AI-driven cyber­se­cu­rity and protec­tion for IoT devices, sophisti­ca­ted paren­tal controls, and secure access control and motion detec­tion. Comple­men­ting Home­Pass is a power­ful, data-driven back-end opera­ti­ons plat­form that provi­des nume­rous useful tools through Plume’s Haystack™ and Harvest™ suites: for real-time custo­mer support that is also predic­tive, network control center appli­ca­ti­ons, detailed analy­tics, compre­hen­sive dash­boards, custo­mer beha­vior and satis­fac­tion insights, churn fore­cas­ting, and reten­tion marke­ting services for CSPs.

Plume will use the funding to inten­sify its invest­ment in rese­arch and deve­lo­p­ment and incre­ase its focus on sales, marke­ting and part­ners­hips. The company also plans to conti­nue its rapid deve­lo­p­ment in the areas of products, sales, custo­mers, distri­bu­tion chan­nels and geogra­phic expan­sion, hiring new employees in all loca­ti­ons in North America, Europe and Asia.

“The market for smart home products is liter­ally explo­ding, but the custo­mer expe­ri­ence often falls by the wayside,” said Ryan Hinkle, mana­ging direc­tor of Insight Part­ners, who joined Plume’s board of direc­tors. “We believe Plume’s scala­ble cloud data plat­form, highly effi­ci­ent go-to-market stra­tegy, strong deve­lo­p­ment poten­tial, best-in-class finan­cial perfor­mance across all SaaS KPIs — inclu­ding reve­nue, growth rates, gross margin, and effi­ci­ency and reten­tion metrics — and world-class team will open up enti­rely new hori­zons in this space. We are plea­sed to be able to accom­pany and support this exci­ting journey.”

Custo­mers bene­fit from the ever-expan­ding Plume plat­form through Open­Sync™, the most widely suppor­ted open source sili­con-to-cloud frame­work for smart spaces. With Open­Sync, CSPs can offer their services in a hard­ware-inde­pen­dent manner and quickly curate and deploy new services using a vendor-neutral, open-plat­form archi­tec­ture. Mana­ged through a highly scala­ble cloud control plane, new services can be deployed mostly without new equip­ment, redu­cing capi­tal expen­dit­ures and exten­ding the useful life of exis­ting infra­st­ruc­ture. Since its incep­tion in 2018, Open­Sync has been active on more than 26 million access points and swit­ches across a wide range of chip­set and device plat­forms, and has attrac­ted many exter­nal deve­lo­pers and supporters.

“We are exci­ted to welcome Ryan Hinkle to our board and look forward to working with the entire Insight team,” said Fahri Diner, co-foun­der and CEO of Plume. “Using machine lear­ning and AI, cloud data, open source, close ecosys­tem part­ners­hips, and a scala­ble plat­form, we are uniquely brid­ging the gap between the expec­ta­ti­ons of smart spaces and the ability of service provi­ders to deli­ver perfect expe­ri­en­ces — while buil­ding a leading, high-growth SaaS busi­ness in a large, under­ser­ved market. Our streng­t­he­ned finan­cial resour­ces from this invest­ment, coupled with our opera­tio­nal scale advan­tage, set the stage for Plume to conti­nue to invest confi­dently in its future.”

Jeffe­ries acted as finan­cial advi­sor to Plume in the transaction.

About Plume

Plume® has deve­lo­ped the world’s first globally deployed SaaS expe­ri­ence plat­form for commu­ni­ca­ti­ons service provi­ders (CSPs) and their subscri­bers. As the only open and hard­ware-inde­pen­dent solu­tion, Plume enab­les rapid deploy­ment of new services to connec­ted homes (and beyond) at scale. Custo­mers bene­fit from self-opti­mi­zing WLAN, cyber­se­cu­rity, access controls, paren­tal controls, motion detec­tion and much more. CSPs get reli­able back-end appli­ca­ti­ons that provide unpre­ce­den­ted visi­bi­lity and both reac­tive and preven­ta­tive support. Plume lever­a­ges Open­Sync™, an open source frame­work pre-inte­gra­ted on and suppor­ted by the leading chip­set, CPE and plat­form SDKs.

Plume’s inves­tors include Char­ter Commu­ni­ca­ti­ons, Comcast Cable, Foxconn, Insight Part­ners, Jack­son Square Ventures, Liberty Global Ventures, Pres­idio Ventures, Qual­comm, Samsung, Service Electric Cable­vi­sion, Shaw Ventures, Sili­con Valley Bank and UpBeat Venture Part­ners. www.plume.com, www.plume.com/homepass, andwww.opensync.io.

Plume, Home­Pass, Haystack, Harvest and Open­Sync are trade­marks or regis­tered trade­marks of Plume Design, Inc.

About Insight Partners

Insight Part­ners is a leading global venture capi­tal and private equity firm that invests in high-growth tech­no­logy and soft­ware scale-up compa­nies driving disrup­tive change in their indus­tries. Since its foun­ding in 1995, Insight Part­ners has inves­ted in more than 400 compa­nies world­wide and raised more than $30 billion in invest­ment capi­tal through a series of funds. Insight’s goal is to find, fund and success­fully part­ner with visio­nary entre­pre­neurs by provi­ding them with prac­ti­cal, real-world soft­ware exper­tise to enable long-term success. Through its people and port­fo­lio, Insight fosters a culture based on the belief that Scal­eUp compa­nies and growth create oppor­tu­nities for all. www.insightpartners.com

Mosa Meat closes $85 million Series B investment round

Maas­tricht (NL) — Mosa Meat, the Euro­pean food tech­no­logy company that laun­ched the world’s first hambur­ger made from farmed beef in 2013, announ­ced the third and final closing of its Series B finan­cing. This third closing of $10 million brings the total amount of the finan­cing round to $85 million. New inves­tors include Blue Hori­zon Ventures and Nutreco.

Inves­tors in this latest deal include new and exis­ting inves­tors such as Nutreco, a global leader in pet food and aqua feed, and Jitse Groen, CEO of Just Eat Takeaway.com. The funding brings toge­ther leading global inves­tors with a wealth of know­ledge that will help Mosa Meat grow its produc­tion of real beef in a sustainable and safe way.

“We are exci­ted to expand our colla­bo­ra­tion with exis­ting part­ners and welcome new part­ners to this round,” said Maar­ten Bosch, CEO of Mosa Meat. “The comple­tion of the Series B funding brings us one step closer to our mission of deve­lo­ping a clea­ner and gent­ler way to produce real beef. Our part­ners bring immense stra­te­gic capa­bi­li­ties and exper­tise and share our strong commit­ment to incre­a­sing the sustaina­bi­lity of our global food system.”

Mosa Meat will use the funds to expand the current pilot produc­tion faci­lity at the Maas­tricht site, deve­lop an indus­trial-scale produc­tion line, grow the team and intro­duce tasty cultu­red beef to consumers.

Rob Kore­m­ans, CEO of Nutreco, says: “I am deligh­ted that Mosa Meat has reached the next mile­stone on the road to large-scale produc­tion of real meat. Nutreco is inves­ting in its ‘Feeding the Future’ mission, which requi­res protein produc­tion from tradi­tio­nal and alter­na­tive protein produc­tion methods. Our part­ners­hip with Mosa Meat is an important part of our stra­tegy to meet the growing demand for high-quality protein.”

The Series B funding round is led by Luxem­bourg-based Blue Hori­zon Ventures, a food tech­no­logy fund that aims to support and promote a posi­tive global impact on the envi­ron­ment, human health and animal welfare. Mosa Meat welco­mes this strong group of mission-driven inves­tors following success­ful Series A funding in 2018 led by M Ventures and Bell Food Group.

About MOSA MEAT

Mosa Meat is a Nether­lands-based food tech­no­logy company pionee­ring a clea­ner, gent­ler way to produce real beef. The team intro­du­ced the world’s first cultu­red beef hambur­ger in 2013 by growing it directly from cow cells. Foun­ded in 2016, Mosa Meat is now ramping up produc­tion of the same beef people love, but it’s more animal-friendly, envi­ron­ment­ally friendly and safer to eat. They are a diverse and growing team of nutri­tion-conscious problem solvers united in their mission to funda­ment­ally trans­form the global food system. www.mosameat.com.

About BLUE HORIZON VENTURES

Blue Hori­zon Ventures was foun­ded in 2018 by serial entre­pre­neurs and inves­tors Roger Lien­hard and Michael Kleindl and mana­ges assets of €183 million. The funds are inten­ded to support the move­ment toward a more sustainable food system through inno­va­tion, tech­no­logy and entre­pre­neurs­hip. Special empha­sis is placed on plant-based meat, cultu­red meat, synthe­tic biology and sustaina­bi­lity. The Fund’s under­ly­ing mission is to promote a posi­tive global impact on the envi­ron­ment, human health and animal welfare. One of its requi­re­ments is that all its port­fo­lio compa­nies contri­bute to the 2030 Sustainable Deve­lo­p­ment Goals set by the UN Gene­ral Assem­bly. www.bluehorizonventures.com.

About NUTRECO

Every day, Nutreco’s 12,100 dedi­ca­ted employees in more than 37 coun­tries around the world tirelessly pursue our mission to feed the future in a way that ensu­res sustaina­bi­lity is at the fore­front of ever­ything we do. Our solu­ti­ons go beyond nutri­tion — we provide world-class advice and tech­no­logy to help our custo­mers produce more food in a sustainable way to feed our growing popu­la­tion. With more than 100 years of expe­ri­ence, Nutreco is a world leader in animal nutri­tion with its Trouw Nutri­tion divi­sion and in aqua feed with its Skret­ting divi­sion. Our NuFron­tiers team works to iden­tify, deve­lop and invest in next-genera­tion breakthrough inno­va­tions across the value chain. In 2019, Nutreco achie­ved net sales of EUR 6.4 billion. The company is a subsi­diary of SHV Holdings N.V., a family-owned multi­na­tio­nal company with net sales of €19.2 billion in 2019.
nutreco.com.

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