London-based VC Index Ventures has closed its new early-stage 350 million Euro venture fund. The fund follows its 2007 fund of the same size which saw it back Netlog (a European MySpace), OpenX, Viagogo, MyHeritage, Playfish and a number of other high profile startups. It also raised a $400 million late stage fund last year, and is known for exits including Skype and MySQL.
Index remains focused on Europe, Israel and the U.S. and, says TechCrunch, is looking closely at mobile advertising, cloud computing and virtualization.
Index’ best-known partner Danny Rimer has been ranked number 16 on Forbes’ annual Midas List – as well as for being one of the shrewdest players around who’s happy to play hardball when required.
So where does that leave the top-tier pan-European VC scene?
Last December Accel announced two new funds that added more than $1 billion to their war chest: Accel Growth Fund at $480 million and Accel London III at $525 million. The Growth Fund focuses on later stage investments information technology, internet, digital media, mobile, networking, software, and services. The London fund invests in early and late stage European and Israeli startups. It’s current and past portfolio includes Baidu, Brightcove, Comscore, Etsy, Facebook, Walmart.com, Zimbra and dozens of other startups. Accel has offices in Palo Alto, London and Bangalore as well as in China via a IDG-Accel Partnership.
In January Atlas Venture closed its eighth fund (Fund VIII), which comes in at $283 million.
So who in the class has not signed Teacher’s register yet?
Wellington Partners is still running on the smell of its 4th early stage fund of 250m Euros which it announced in Q4 of 2007. This is exclusively geared to tech companies in Europe and have gone into Adconian, Proximic (out of Germany), Game Duell (Berlin) and Truphone in the UK.
We’re still waiting for hear from DFJ Esprit (rumoured to be in the late stages of closing a new fund), Advent Venture Partners and Doughty Hanson.
Gossips whisper that if one of these latter three doesn’t close a new round then this will be evidence of the predicted shakeout in the European VC market. And that’s generally perceived to be “a good thing” – depending on who you are of course.