[Germany] Team Europe Ventures, the Berlin-based VC firm, has launched a new €6 million fund for early stage startups in the Internet and mobile Internet space. The fund is mainly targeting companies in Germany and Europe, but also in the USA, and the focus will be on the seed stage, with 4-5 startups being invested in per-year for a maximum of €500K per company.
This is bound to be good news for startups in Europe, and particularly in Germany where seed funding is seen to be a problem for early stage companies in the Internet space. Pawel Chudzinski, one of the partners of Team Europe Ventures comments:
“We see a gap in the area of seed investment. For example in Germany there are only very few angel investors who invest six-figure amounts; on the other hand, business angel consortia have various drawbacks, e.g. the problem that none of the investors ever feels wholly responsible, which has negative impacts during due diligance as well as when companies need support in tough times.”
Another thing that Team Europe Ventures are keen to stress is that early stage means, when appropriate, early. Kolja Hebenstreit, also a partner, says:
“We are able to invest in very early stages. If a team is complete, or nearly complete, we’re happy to come on board during the so called ‘powerpoint’ stage. Experience shows that decisive decisions are often made during the foundation phase, so we think it’s good to speak with experienced potential partners as early as possible.”
Team Europe Ventures is managed from Berlin by the its four partners Lukasz Gadowski (founder of Spreadshirt, co-founder of StudiVZ), Kolja Hebenstreit (early employee at Spreadshirt, seed investor in StudiVZ), Pawel Chudzinski (formerly Grennhill & Co.) and Steffen Hoellinger.
The firm is currently a shareholder in 15 self founded companies or lead investments as well as 40 co-investments.
Aside from the Team Europe Ventures management themselves, the fund’s investors consist of other Internet entrepreneurs as well as active business angels, including Arend Iven and Ron Hillmann; Dario Suter (film producer, formerly StudiVZ); Matthias Spieß (Spreadshirt), Heiko Hubertz (Bigpoint), Mueller Medien; Günter Faltin (Professor for entrepreneurship and business angel); Jan Becker, Robert Wuttke and Andreas Etten (CGI AG); Kai Bolik, Michael Kalkowski and Boris Wasmuth (Gameduell); Mario Kohle and Robin Behlau (Käuferportal); Masoud Kamali (Software & Support Verlag); Christoph Janz and Christopher Münchhoff.