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Venture capital investors, you might hear about them many times being a part of business society or just being interested in latest news from the entrepreneurial and investment worlds. At Apiumhub we always try to stay updated with the latest information about promising startups in Spain, international tech startups and innovative solutions. So, I decided to observe the current investment situation in Spain and its principal and leading investors.
Here are the main Spanish venture capital investors with a presence not only in Spain, but also globally. The list includes ventures, business angels, funds, venture builder that successfully have invested in companies in the last two years.
Facts about Spanish investors & startups in Spain
Before I start the list with the main Spanish Venture Capital investors I would like to bring up some facts & statistics about Spanish investors & startup scene here in Spain.
According to UNCTAD, Spain is the fifth largest recipient of FDI(Foreign Direct Investment) stock and the sixth largest investor in the European Union.
Catalonia is the most attractive Spain’s region for investors. Another report prepared by ASCRI (Spain’s Association for Capital, Growth and Investment) says that Catalan startups received, in 2015, a total of €371m from both public funds as well as accelerators and incubators, venture capital funds and corporations.
To prove the statement, even more, it’s essential to mention that Catalonia attracted 56 % of the total investment volume in Spain (€659.4m) and 33 % of all operations.
Moreover, on international VC investments, Catalonia accounted for 53% of all deals and 71% of the amount invested in Spain (€277.2m).
Top 18 Venture Capital investors in Spain
1 – Antai Venture Builder
To begin a list of venture capital investors, I would like with Antai – a leading online and mobile venture builder in Europe that was founded in 2012. It did an effort in founding several Spanish fast-growing startups with operations in more than 10 countries in Europe and Latin America. The mission of the company is to analyze the market and its needs, search for the business models with a proven success and then implement those models in new markets. Antai Venture Builder has co-founded multiple ventures with international presence like Wallapop, the leading second-hand marketplace app with operations in Spain and US, CornerJob, Deliberry, Stampydoo, Shopery or Elcodi.
2 – ENISA
Being a public company under the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism, Enisa plays an active role in the funding of viable and innovative technology projects in Spain.
The mission of Enisa is to foster the creation, growth and consolidation of Spanish companies, actively participating in the financing of viable and innovative business projects and in the revitalization of the venture capital market.
Since 1982, it has focused its activity on financing SMEs through the participatory loan ( loans made by multiple lenders to a single borrower). In 2012 they formalized more than 685 transactions and invested more than 96 million euros. Some of the invested companies: GrouApp, CleverPPC, Excellenting, etc.
3 – Kibo Ventures
Kibo Ventures, based in Madrid, invests in exceptional digital companies led by great teams and entrepreneurs. Mainly, they invest $ 200K – 5M per deal in the earlier stages, in internet and mobile companies, with a “Super Angel” approach, look for exponential growth and try to engage actively with their portfolio companies, leveraging our broad and deep relationships in many markets.
Kibo Ventures manages $130 million from a mix of institutional and private investors, including IEF, Telefonica, the Spanish Government (through CDTI), Mutua Madrileña (Spain’s largest insurance company) and Axis (ICO’s 25 year-old private equity arm).
4 – Carlos Blanco
The next in our Venture Capital investors list is a business angel, mentor, speaker & serial entrepreneur – Carlos Blanco. He specializes in multimedia, telecommunications, and project management. Carlos is a founder of many companies: venture builder Nuclio, Akamon Entertainment, Conector Startup Accelerator, and many others.
He has been investing in startups for more than 10 years, mainly in Spanish startups at a seed phase, focusing on team’s abilities, experience and project’s presentation. An interesting fact, in 2015 he sold Akamon, the startup he founded in 2011, for more than 23 million euros.
2016 was a special year for him, when he invested most money – 925,000 euros in 24 startups that you may heard about like Glovo, Deliberry and Heygo. And 2017 he started with the investment into Hello Umi.
5 – Nauta Capital
Nauta Capital is a Venture Capital firm investing in early stage technology companies. Main areas of interest include B2B Software propositions, disruptive Digital Media companies, and enabling technologies for Mobile and the Internet. Nauta has $260 million under management and invests in Western Europe and the USA. Nauta has presence in London (UK), Boston, MA (USA), and Barcelona (Spain).
6 – Caixa Capital Risc
Caixa Capital Risc is a venture capital division of ‘la Caixa’, a Spanish bank, that was launched in 2004 in Barcelona as a set of initiatives and specific funds to facilitate financing to these companies, depending on the sector and the stage of development. Currently, Caixa Capital Risc manages more than €180M and invests in the early stages of innovative startups with a global vision.
Caixa VC is interested in perceived emerging sectors: technology, digital industries, technologies for industry and life sciences.
A supportive role for Caixa Capital Risc means a lot; carries out activities which, together with other public and private entities, aim to encourage and promote enterprise and the creation of innovative companies in Spain.
Their investment portfolio includes 79 successful and innovative startups & companies with investment size up to €3M: CornerJob, Medlumics, Glovo App, STAT-Diagnostica, Geenapp,. From the latest news: MedLumics, a company owned by “la Caixa” and Ysios Capital, closes a financing round of 34.4 million euros.
7 – Ysios Capital
Ysios Capital for sure can be named is a leading venture capital investor based in Barcelona that provides private equity financing to early- and mid-stage human healthcare and life science companies with a special focus on pharmaceuticals, diagnostics and medical devices.
Founded in 2008, Ysios Capital has already more than € 200 million in assets under management distributed over two funds.
In the main investments made by Ysios Capital in 2017 can be included Prexton Therapeutics, Medlumics, BioClin Therapeutics, Vivet Therapeutics and Anaconda BioMed.
8 – Cabiedes & Partners
Cabiedes & Partners is a Spanish venture capital firm from Madrid that provides seed funding, early-stage investment services. They dived into the funding market in 2009 and concentrated on E-Commerce, Enterprise Software, Design, Fintech sectors. Last year, in 2016, they invested in 11 companies with total investments of more than 10 million euros.
9 – Jose Marin
Jose Marin started his professional career as a consultant at The Boston Consulting Group. His successful entrepreneurial & investment expertises has started in 1999, when he co-founded DeRemate.com (eBay model for Latin America). The company raised $75M, did a partial cash-out sale to Terra and later merged with Mercado Libre that went Public in Nasdaq .
Currently Jose is co-Founder and co-CEO of IG Expansion. IG takes successful internet business models into emerging markets (main focus Brazil) and has a principle to build one project per year and won’t build more than 6 in a year. Together with IG Expansion he invested in such companies like Farfetch ($196M), Boxed ($125M), Earnest ($75M), Shiftgig ($22M) and many others.
10 – Bonsai VC
Next from the list of venture capital investors – Bonsai. With almost of 20 years of funding experience they invest in domestic internet companies with great mobile focus and global ambition like Wallapop, Linktomedia,Gigas, CornerJob, Glovo, Softonic and etc. Bonsai’s model integrates ownership and management. Managers own more than 60% of the capital stake. Their strategy is to move the focus from offline content to online space. Keeping this idea in mind, they have focused on accelerating this change in the Spanish market, starting with online classifieds.
11 – Flint Capital
Flint Capital is an international venture capital $100 million fund investing in Europe, Israel and US with offices in Boston, Palo Alto and Tel Aviv. Mainly, they focus on Mobile, SaaS, Advertisement, Financial and Educational Technologies as well as Security and Enterprise sectors. They are committed to working with ambitious and scalable projects that target fast growing markets.
12 – Axon Partners Group
Axon Partners Group Investment has a winning combination of a global presence, partnering with local expertise.Created by entrepreneurs with vast business development and financial experience, Axon has grown to become a team of over 50 experts, worldwide. They manage over $ 180M in funds and invest from 100,000 to 25 million USD in companies in Latin America, Spain and India. Axon has a proven track record of success in sectors like energy, healthcare and digital economy. They invest from 100,000 to 25 million USD.
13 – Inveready
Inveready Technology Investment Group is one of the leading venture capital early-stage investment VCs in Spain, with five investment funds. Inveready invests in technology companies with high growth potential and innovative business models. Venture capital has extensive experience in different areas, with more than 45 portfolio companies leaders in various sectors and 5 investment vehicles with €65 million under management. The funds have invested in more than 45 companies since 2008.
14 – Active Partners
Active Partners is a European venture capital company from Barcelona focused on positively disrupting its traditional sector. Spearheaded by a diverse, passionate and multinational team, it is building a reputation for providing support that goes beyond capital for high growth businesses. With a presence in Spain, Germany and Scandinavia, Active Venture Partners targets entrepreneurial teams driving digital start-ups and seeking holistic partnerships based on shared values and pro-active support. Start-up founders connect to the unique Active Partners community to engage with sector specialists, growth experts and senior advisors.
Since 2004 Active venture capital has invested in 25 companies in two funds totaling €74M; mainly focused on mobile retail, mobile marketplaces, mobile technology ecosystems, IoT, big data, SaaS and digital business models.
15 – Seaya Ventures
Seaya Ventures is a Spanish venture fund investing in early and growth stage Internet and technology-enabled companies in Spain and Latin America. Seaya Ventures seeks to transform early and growth stage companies into category leaders, with a focus on innovative businesses that require growth or expansion capital and can build a lasting value.
16 – Bankinter
A leading spanish banking group – Bankinter launched its own Innovation Foundation with the mission to promote the creation of sustainable wealth in Spain through innovation and entrepreneurship. The main part of their investment strategy is the quality of customer service and innovation and Bankinter invested in PayPal (2001 year),Play Giga, Captio, Mobincube, etc.
17 – Santander
Many know Santander as a leading retail and commercial bank based in Spain; being presented in 10 core European and Latin American countries. Also, Santander is the largest bank in the euro zone by market capitalization and among the top 12 banks on a global basis.
In 2015 Santander Group launched an investment venture, $100 million fund with a strong focus on disruptive innovation in the FinTech space – Santander InnoVentures. The fund’s primary focus withing Fintech is on: digital delivery of financial services, online lending, e-financial investment & big data analytics.
Currently, based in London, Santander is present globally. Fund positions itself as an active investor that will not only invest in a startup but will be a supportive partner helping in growing and scaling.
In their investment portfolio, you can see such companies as iZettle, Mycheck, Cyanogen, Ripple, Kabbage, Socure, SigFig and others.
18 – JME Venture Capital
And the last one in our list of venture capital investors is Madrid’s Venture Capital company, (José Manuel Entrecanales) JME Venture Capital mainly participates in early-stage investments, including larger Series A rounds & seed investments. Even their initial investment are not that big, they strive to continue to support their portfolio companies in their financial lifecycle.
Their last investment (March 2017) was given to the Spanish startup – Odilo, a digital content library, where the company got $6M in a Series B. The investment portfolio of JME also includes such startups & companies like Dexma, Redbooth, Jobandtalent, Minube, Sentisis, etc.
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