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Draper Esprit, a listed venture capital firm which has supported companies including Graze and LoveFilm, announced that it had acquired first and second funds of Seedcamp for £17.9m.
Seedcamp funds 1 and 2 include a stake in Transferwise, the fintech unicorn. They were last valued at a total of £23.5m. Against the purchase price, this will provide Draper Esprit with a £5.6m boost.
Other distinguished companies in the Seedcamp portfolios include Codacy, a computer code review platform, Fishbrain, a fishing social network app, and Winnowm, a smart kitchen technology business.
“We are thrilled to help our Seedcamp companies scale to the next level with the support and firepower of Draper Esprit. As the Seedcamp team continue to manage Funds 1 and 2, Draper is the perfect partner to help us manage these businesses moving forward,” stated Reshma Sohoni, the co-founder and managing partner of Seedcamp.
Draper Esprit is set to continue to invest in the said portfolio to help it grow, and the team of Seedcamp will remain to be managers of the funds working with the new owners.
Already, the two funds that were raised in 2007 and 2010 respectively have returned more than four times the invested capital to their underlying investors.
The other funds of Seedcamp are unaffected, and Draper Esprit itself has lately invested in the fourth fund of the firm as part of its new seed fund-of-funds initiative.
Being listed, which is unusual for a venture capital firm, Draper Esprit intends to offer investors a looser alternative model to the conventional fund which would usually spend five years collecting a portfolio of companies and another five years growing them before trading their stakes.
“Although principally a primary series A, B, and C venture capital growth investor, we have also been very active over the years as a secondary tech investor in Europe having acquired a number of well-known venture capital portfolios and increasingly taking large direct stakes in later stage companies,” stated Simon Cook, the chief executive of Draper Esprit.
“Together with our recently announced seed fund-of-funds strategy, we can offer long-term patient capital solutions for all European tech companies and their investors outside of the constraints of a typical five-plus-five year fund.”