Investments

IQ Capital ‘open to suggestions’ on investing $300m raised for “deep tech”

Cambridge-based IQ Capital has raised $125m for scale-ups and third $175m fund for start-ups working in the artificial intelligence, biotech and internet of things ‘deep tech’

Cambridge-based IQ Capital has raised $125m for scale-ups and third $175m fund for start-ups working in the artificial intelligence, biotech and internet of things ‘deep tech’.

IQ Capital, the Cambridge-based venture capital firm, says it is “open to suggestions” as to how to invest the additional $300m it has raised to invest in “deep tech.”

The venture capital firm has launched a new $125m Growth Opportunities Fund and closed its third venture fund, IQ Capital Fund III, at $175m.

Previous exits for IQ Capital, which was founded in 2007, include Google, Apple and Facebook and its current portfolio has a paper worth of $1.2bn.

The Growth Opportunities Fund will provide later-stage capital to outperforming companies in IQ’s existing portfolio. Privitar, a data privacy engineering firm which IQ Capital supported at seed stage, is the new fund’s first investment, as part of a $40 million Series B funding round.

Meanwhile, IQ says fundraising for IQ Capital Fund III was significantly oversubscribed, with more than 90pc of the firm’s Fund II investors doubling down and re-investing in the new fund. Investors include British Patient Capital and National Grid Partners, the investment arm of the electricity and gas utility firm.

Fund III focuses on investing into companies at seed and Series A stage.

In the last year, IQ Capital has invested in 12 early-stage start-ups, including Causalens, Concirrus, and Iotic. These startups will join Fund II scale-ups Thought Machine, Fluidic Analytics, Paragraf, and Speechmatics.

Initial investments will range from £300,000 to £5m, with potential for follow-on funding worth up to £30m, according to the Financial Times.

Co-Founder and partner at IQ Capital, Max Bautin said that the partners, Ed Stacey, Kerry Baldwin, and he, have been investing in deep-tech for over 20 years, and during this time they have seen investment in the sector grow from tens of millions p.a. to $1.75 billion deployed across Europe in 2018 alone. Half of this capital was invested into UK start-ups, reinforcing the UK as a leader in Europe, with well-established technology ecosystems formed in Cambridge, Bristol, Oxford, and London.

He said that IQ Capital has grown its funds under management over 10x in the last five years. The investment team has tripled in size over the same period with recent joiners Rick Hao, Daniel Carew and Marek Chalupnik. IQ Capital is now firmly established as the leading deep tech investor in the UK.

Lisa Lambert, founder and president of National Grid Partners, said that the firm is positioned as the go-to deep-tech fund in the EU, and the team has a proven ability to connect with founders through all stages, from seed to exit.

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