OpenOcean, a European VC which has tended to concentrate on large data-oriented startups and deep tech, has attain the €92 million ($111.5 million) mark for its third primary enterprise fund, and is aiming for a remaining shut of €130 million by mid-way this yr. LPs within the new fund embody the European Investment Fund (EIF), Tesi, pension funds, main household places of work and Oxford University’s Corpus Christi College.
Ekaterina Almasque — who has already led investments in IQM (superconducting quantum machines) and Sunrise.io (multi-cloud hyper-converged infrastructure) and is main the London group and operations for the agency — has been appointed as normal companion. Before becoming a member of, Almasque was a managing director at Samsung Catalyst Fund in Europe, led investments in Graphcore’s processor for Artificial Intelligence, Mapillary’s layer for speedy mapping and AIMotive’s autonomous driving stack.
The monumental wealth of knowledge within the fashionable world means the subsequent era of software program is being constructed on the infrastructure. Thus, the fund mentioned it could make investments primarily on the Series A stage with preliminary investments of €three million to €5 million, throughout OpenOcean’s precept areas of synthetic intelligence, application-driven information infrastructure, clever automation and open supply.
OpenOcean’s group contains Michael “Monty” Widenius, the “religious father” of MariaDB, and one of many unique builders of MySQL, the predecessor to MariaDB; Tom Henriksson, who invested in MySQL and MariaDB; in addition to Ralf Wahlsten and Patrik Backman.
Tom Henriksson, normal companion at OpenOcean, commented: “Ekaterina… brings an immense quantity of experience to the group and exemplifies the way in which we need to assist our founders. Fund 2020 is a vital step for OpenOcean, with prestigious LPs trusting our strategy and our information, and believing in our skill to determine the perfect information options and infrastructure applied sciences in Europe.”
Almasque mentioned: “The subsequent 5 years might be essential for digital infrastructure, as breakthrough applied sciences are at the moment being constrained by the capabilities of the stack. Enabling this subsequent stage of infrastructure innovation is essential to realising digitisation tasks throughout the financial system and can decide what the web of the longer term seems like. We’re excited by the potential of world-leading companies being constructed throughout Europe and are wanting ahead to supporting the subsequent era of software program leaders.”
Speaking to TechCrunch she added: “It’s very uncommon to search out such a VC so deep within the stack which additionally invested in one of many first unicorns in Europe and actually constructed the open supply ecosystem globally. So for me, this was completely an fascinating group to hitch. And what OpenOcean was doing since inception in 2011 was very distinctive amongst pioneering ecosystems, corresponding to large information analytics… and it stays very pioneering, pushing the frontiers in synthetic intelligence and now quantum computing. This is what actually attracts me, and I believe there’s a very, very large future.”
In an interview Henriksson informed me: “What we’re seeing is that our financial system is shifting increasingly in direction of the digital, data-driven financial system. It began with few industries, however now we see a bigger shift, together with new industries like healthcare, like manufacturing.”
Asked in regards to the results of the pandemic on the sector, he mentioned: “Obviously we see loads of startups who’re plugging into issues just like the UiPath platform. This could be very related for the pandemic. Because the businesses that had began automating strongly earlier than the pandemic hit… they’ve really accelerated they usually discover advantages for his or her groups and organisations and truly the individuals are happier as a result of they’ve higher automation applied sciences in place. The ones that didn’t begin earlier than [the pandemic hit] they’re just a little behind now.”