Tech

Sure Valley Ventures closes a £ 85m fund to support AI start-ups in the UK

UK venture capital firm Sure Valley Ventures has raised £ 85m for a fund to support 25 British software start-ups in sectors including metaverse, artificial intelligence (AI) and cybersecurity.

The British Business Bank, an independent government – owned investment bank, provided £ 50m to the fund through it Venture Capital Funds program. The remaining £ 35m came from new and existing private investors.

Sure Valley Ventures, who shared the first close exclusively with them RATNsaid it plans to raise an additional £ 10m from private investors over the next six months, bringing its total available capital to £ 95m.

The VC firm will distribute the cash from its Software Venture Capital Fund in the UK equally to the 25 start-ups it chooses.

This will see it add around £ 3.5m to £ 4m in all startups from Seed stage up to Tier B.

Barry Downes, co-founder and managing partner of Sure Valley Ventures told RATN the firm would look to make an initial investment of around £ 1m to £ 1.5m per company for “equity between 15% and 20%.

Sure Valley will hold the remaining allocated capital in its “reserve” to invest in subsequent Tier A and Tier R rounds.

The VC firm says that 93% of the companies in which it has invested have raised Tier A or B consecutive rounds within two years of the first Seed investment.

Founded in 2016, the former technology founders created Sure Valley Capital to target the UK and Irish technology market. In addition to providing capital, the VC firm operates a platform to create custom programs to mentor and assist the founders in whom it invests.

Downes said his firm wants to support “high-impact” software start-ups called Sure Valley Ventures “disruptive innovation”. He said a technology background helps him and his team “go under the hood” of a company’s product and communicate its value to investors who have little knowledge of the underlying technology.

“Because we are technology people and founders, we tend to go for the high – tech or technology – backed companies,” Downes said. “That’s one thing I think you’ll see in terms of our investment style – much more technology-oriented.”

Downes is bullish on the metaverse – an overarching term for describing digital worlds accessed by virtual and augmented reality headsets. It wants to ensure that Sure Valley Ventures is on the “right” side of this latest trend, both economically and socially.

Sure Valley Ventures has a track record of supporting companies working in the metaverse. Last summer, it invested in VividQCambridge software company turning consumer displays into holographic displays.

It also supported Exchange XR, an Irish metrics meeting platform launched in 2018.

Sure Valley Ventures looks beyond London

Sure Valley has also announced the opening of a new office in Manchester to be used as a hub for investment in start-ups in Northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. It currently has offices in London, Dublin and Cambridge.

It reflects a broader trend across the UK technology ecosystem, with the pandemic shift to remote work helping to accelerate the growth of UK technology clusters located outside the capital.

“The AI ​​and immersive technology sectors are major British success stories and investments such as this one at Sure Valley Ventures ensure that early stage companies in the Northern Regions can access the funding they need to compete at the forefront of global innovation, ”said the Lord. Gerry Grimstone, Minister for Investment.

“It’s great to see this investment in the North of England, which shows the attractiveness of UK investment as we continue to level all parts of the UK.”

Ken Cooper, managing director of venture solutions at the British Business Bank, said his Venture Capital Funds had reduced barriers to entry for emerging funds and “those targeting underserved market areas”.

Cooper added: “Our cornerstone commitment to Sure Valley will support investment in high-potential, early-stage software companies at the forefront of changes in the turbulent technology sector, across the UK.”



Sure Valley Ventures closes a £ 85m fund to support AI start-ups in the UK

Source link Sure Valley Ventures closes a £ 85m fund to support AI start-ups in the UK

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