Draper Esprit was founded in 2006 with a mission to back Europe's most ambitious entrepreneurs.
We invest into visionary and growing companies and also have the ability to do direct secondary deals into late stage tech companies as well as buying entire venture capital portfolios. We raise funds from a variety sources and always are able to source capital for the best opportunities through our partnerships.

Leading institutional LPs have committed more than $1 billion to our funds historically, and we are one of the largest and most active VC firms in Europe. In 2016 we moved our Primary funds into a listed PLC model to allow us to take a longer term, multi-stage, patient capital approach. Please see our Investors section for more information.

In 2012, we launched our first angel EIS co-investment fund to enable founders, tech executives and HNW’s to invest alongside us to help build bigger networks for our portfolio companies. Through our angel EIS co-investment funds, we have successfully deployed capital on behalf of over a hundred personal investors into some of Europe’s fastest growing companies alongside our leading institutional investors. For more information contact Richard Marsh.

Draper Esprit has also been the most active secondary tech investor in Europe having acquired ten VC portfolios to date as well as direct stakes into later stage companies. Our total capital commitments for secondary transactions is over $400m and if you’d like to speak about a secondary opportunity please contact Jonathan Sibilia.



Funds raised to date

$1.15 BN

No. of investments made since foundation


Currently investing from

Our permanent capital PLC balance sheet, our annual EIS funds and deal-by-deal secondary funds

No. of countries with a Draper Esprit portfolio company


Exits since 2010

$4 BN

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Draper Esprit announce acquisition of Seedcamp funds I and II incl a stake in Transferwise

Posted by Isabella Cookson, 25 Oct 2017

Draper Esprit (AIM: GROW, ESM: GRW), a leading venture capital firm investing in high growth digital technology businesses, has announced the acquisition of Seedcamp Funds I and II (“the Funds”) for £17.9 million (€20 million). (“the Transaction”).

As a result, the Company has acquired stakes in high profile growing technology companies including Transferwise, a leading UK based Fintech business. The portfolio also includes a number of promising companies including Codacy, Edited, Erply, Fishbrain, Codility, Winnow, Codeship and Try.com. The portfolio’s last reported NAV was £23.5 million (€26.3 million), resulting in an increase of £5.6 million (€6.3 million) (~7p per share) for the Company, against the latest reported NAV per share as at 30 September 2017 of 372p (NAV per share, excluding goodwill, of 344p).

Transferwise, the international money transfer platform, will be added to the Company’s Core Portfolio. Co-founded by Taavet Hinrikus and Kristo Käärmann, TransferWise launched in 2011. It is one of Europe’s most successful fintech startups having raised $117m in funding from investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, Sir Richard Branson, Valar Ventures and Max Levchin of PayPal. Over a million people use TransferWise to transfer over $1.2 billion every month.

Draper Esprit’s other core portfolio companies include Trustpilot, Clavis Insights, Sportpursuit, M-Files, Graze, Lyst, Conversocial, Push Doctor, Graphcore and Perkbox. An overview of other notable holdings from this Transaction are detailed below.

Following the deal, Draper Esprit will continue to invest further in the portfolio to help it develop and grow, working closely with both the team at Seedcamp and within the portfolio companies as they grow. The Seedcamp management team will continue to work closely alongside the Draper Esprit team to manage the portfolio and to create further value for founders and investors in the Funds.

To date, the combined Seedcamp Funds I and II, raised in 2007 and 2010, have returned over 4x capital to their investors. Seedcamp also continues its management of other Seedcamp funds unrelated to this Transaction.

Simon Cook, CEO Draper Esprit plc commented:

“Although principally a primary series A, B and C VC 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 VC portfolios and increasingly taking large direct stakes in later stage companies. 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 5+5 year fund.

“We have a great relationship with Seedcamp and recently invested directly in their Seedcamp IV fund to give our investors access to seed stage opportunities. This acquisition further bolsters our growing secondary business; and we are excited to work with a really good portfolio of European technology companies including Transferwise, one of Europe’s most successful startups.”

Reshma Sohoni, Seedcamp Co-founder & Managing Partner, commented:

“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 and ensure we continue to go above and beyond in delivering returns to our LPs.”

Carlos Eduardo Espinal, Seedcamp Managing Partner, added:

“We see this as a great outcome working alongside experienced and knowledgeable investors who’ve supported us for many years. We are always looking at innovative ways to deliver exceptional returns to our LPs and believe this transaction is a win-win for everyone involved. We look forward to continuing to work with the growing companies and founders from our first and second funds with Draper’s added horsepower.”

Other notable companies in this Transaction:


Based in Lisbon, Portgual this is an automated code review platform which raised a further $5.1 million in Series A funding from EQT Ventures, Faber, Caixa Capital, Join Capital and Seedcamp. Codacy is used by hundreds of companies, including Paypal, Adobe, Qlik, Cancer Research UK and Deliveroo.


Editd creates real-time data analytics software for apparel retailers and brands to monitor the clothing retail market worldwide. The company has clients across the globe including in the UK, US, China, Australia, South Africa and South America.


Erply is an enterprise software company focusing on point of sale and inventory management technology and was founded in 2009.


Fishbrain is social network and app for fishing. Other investors in the company include Northzone, , Active Venture Partners, GP Bullhound and Edastra Venture Capital.


Codility is a global leader in tech recruiting assessments. In June it announced it had become the most widely used platform to help companies evaluate and hire the best tech talent having assessed over 4 million candidates.


Winnow is a UK startup that has developed smart kitchen technology to help commercial kitchens reduce waste. Customers include IKEA, Compass Group and AccorHotels. It recently announced it raised a further $7.4 million from Circularity Capital, Mustard Seed and D-Ax.


Based in Boston and with offices in Vienna and Berlin, Codeship offers Continuous Integration products in the cloud that integrate with the existing DevOps stack and enables clients to accelerate time-to-market of products and features.


Try.com is an e-commerce platform that allows you to try clothes before you buy from any online store.

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Interim results for the period ended 30 September 2017

Posted by Isabella Cookson, 24 Oct 2017

Draper Esprit (AIM: GROW, ESM: GRW), a leading venture capital firm involved in the creation, funding and development of high-growth digital technology businesses, today announces its Interim Results for the period ended 30 September 2017.

Financial highlights
· Gross Primary Portfolio value* increased by 44% to £162.8 million (31 March 2017: £112.7 million)
· Net Assets including goodwill, of £266.8 million (31 March 2017: £150.7 million)
· NAV per share of 372 pence (31 March 2017: 370 pence)
· NAV per share, excluding goodwill, of 344 pence (31 March 2017: 319 pence)
· Profit after tax of £20.9 million (31 March 2017: £33.2 million)
· Additional capital raised of £100.0 million in plc (£95.3 million net) with £92.0 million cash on balance sheet at period end

Operational highlights
· £26.5 million deployed by plc with a further £12.0 million from EIS/VCT funds into next generation opportunities
· The Group has invested in 3 new and 6 existing portfolio companies.
· Gross primary portfolio fair value grew by 22%
· Core Portfolio** holdings have increased by 55% (£17.7 million invested and £25.4 million fair value growth)
· £100.0 million additional capital raised from new and existing shareholders by plc and £35.0 million across the EIS and VCT funds.
· Hired experienced Partner, Ben Tompkins who was formerly Managing Partner at Eden Ventures and tech investment banker at Broadview/ Jefferies where he was co-head of the Global Software, Services and Media practice.

*Gross primary portfolio is the gross value of the Company’s investment holdings before deductions for carry and any deferred tax.
** Core Portfolio holdings is comprises: Graze, Trustpilot, M-Files, Conversocial, Lyst, Sportpursuit, Clavis Insights, Perkbox, Push Doctor and Graphcore

Simon Cook, CEO Draper Esprit commented:

“We set ourselves a financial benchmark of achieving 20% year on year growth in portfolio value in line with our historical record and are consistently achieving this. At the half year we have already delivered 22% growth in the portfolio and stand well positioned to deliver over the full year with significant cash balances remaining to deploy.

“Importantly, we are retaining the ability to hold and grow our companies for longer than our non-listed competitors can and with larger sums available for later rounds to maximise the opportunity and build large successful European technology businesses. We continue to find exciting new opportunities as technology innovation shows no sign of slowing, and our recent seed funds initiative is helping to forge key relationships at the very earliest stages.

“We are demonstrating that our model in action continues to work, with Net Asset Value growing substantially and we are on target to hit our expectations across all metrics for the year end.”

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We support creative European founders in turning their products into global companies

Our strategy is to invest in companies that create new markets or disrupt old ones

We invest in every stage of building disruptive technology companies. This includes getting in early with seed and Series A deals, all the way up to growth opportunities. We also have the capabilities to invest into secondary transactions in later stage companies as well as buying entire funds from other tech investors. Check out our current portfolio to see the stage and sectors that we are most active in.


Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
3D holographic radar and radater data services
Lead Partner: Alan Duncan
Connect to company:



Mobile Sector
Automated mobile software build and testing solutions
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data

Bright Computing

Enterprise & Data Sector
The leading provider of cluster management software
Connect to company:

Health & Wellbeing


Health & Wellbeing Sector
Period and Ovulation Tracker for iPhone and Android
Lead Partner: Vishal Gulati
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data


Enterprise & Data Sector
Cloud-based enterprise social customer service
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data


Enterprise & Data Sector
Open source data store
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data


Enterprise & Data Sector
Relationshiop intelligence software
Lead Partner: Brian Caulfield
Connect to company:

Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
FKA as ZBD. Designs and manufactures low power LCD displays
Lead Partner: Richard Marsh
Connect to company:

Consumer & Commerce


Consumer & Commerce Sector
Nutritionally balanaced snack subscription service
Lead Partner: Simon Cook
Connect to company:

Consumer & Commerce


Consumer & Commerce Sector
Personalized fashion marketplace
Connect to company:

Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
Vision processor technology for mobile and portable devices
Lead Partner: Brian Caulfield
Connect to company:


MTT – Mobile Travel Technologies

Mobile Sector
Mobile commerce platform for the global travel industry
Lead Partner: Brian Caulfield
Connect to company:

Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
Highly programmable semiconductor products for intelligent flow processing in network and comms devices.
Connect to company:

Health & Wellbeing

Oxford Immunotec

Health & Wellbeing Sector
IPO on NASDAQ in 2013
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data


Enterprise & Data Sector
Digital employee engagement platform
Lead Partner: Simon Cook
Connect to company:

Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
Acquired by Maxim Integrated Products
Connect to company:

Consumer & Commerce


Consumer & Commerce Sector
Consumer rights and complaints resolution online platform
Lead Partner: Stuart Chapman
Connect to company:

Consumer & Commerce


Consumer & Commerce Sector
Ecommerce sports website
Connect to company:

Consumer & Commerce


Consumer & Commerce Sector
Dog food tailor-made for your pet
Lead Partner: Simon Cook
Connect to company:



Mobile Sector
Mobile social and media tech company
Connect to company:

Enterprise & Data


Enterprise & Data Sector
World's largest consumer reviews platform
Connect to company:

Systems & Semiconductors


Systems & Semiconductors Sector
XMOS is a leading provider of voice interface solutions.
Lead Partner: Alan Duncan
Connect to company:

Draper Venture Network


The Draper Venture Network is a self-governed organization of 16 independent venture funds operating on four continents that cooperate on market intelligence, corporate relationships, investment diligence and co-investments. The Draper Venture Network started in 1990. All members raise their own capital and manage their investment decisions independently.
Read more here...


OUR TEAM | Investing Partners


Simon Cook

Simon is the CEO of Draper Esprit PLC, which IPO’d on the London and Irish stock exchanges in 2016. Simon has been involved with the European VC industry since 1995 and co-founded Draper Esprit in 2005. He has been involved with a number of Europe’s most successful startups including Lovefilm (Amazon), Cambridge Silicon Radio (IPO), Virata (IPO), nCipher (IPO) and KVS (Symantec). He currently works with Trustpilot, Graze, Crowdcube, Perkbox and Podpoint. Previously Simon was a partner with Cazenove Private Equity, which Draper Esprit acquired in 2006; a partner at Elderstreet Investments, which Draper Esprit acquired in 2016; and an Investment Director of 3i Technology Europe, which Draper Esprit acquired in 2009. He was a computer games developer early in his career and is a Computer Science graduate of the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST).

Portfolio Companies

Current: Graze, Crowdcube, Podpoint, Perkbox, Trustpilot

Stuart Chapman

Stuart is COO of Draper Esprit. Prior to co-founding Draper Esprit in 2005, Stuart was a partner of 3i Ventures where he was also a founding partner of their Menlo Park office.  Over his 13 years at 3i he was responsible for investments in Neutec Pharma (LSE), Network Technology (LSE), The Cloud, Searchspace and Magic 4.  Stuart served as a member of the BVCA Council and Chairman of the Venture Committee and before 3i he was involved in software and systems implementations in the Banking sector.  Stuart currently represents Draper Esprit on the Draper Venture Network Board.

He is a graduate of Loughborough University and serves as a Board Member of the Loughborough School of Business and Economics.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Kiadis, M-files, Netronome, Conversocial, Crate, Metalysis, Resolver and Real Eyes

Brian Caulfield

Brian is a serial entrepreneur turned VC. He previously founded software companies Exceptis Technologies which was acquired by Trintech Group and Similarity Systems that was acquired by Informatica. Prior to joining Draper Esprit, Brian was a partner at Trinity Venture Capital where he sat on the boards of or led investments in AePONA (Intel), ChangingWorlds (Amdocs), CR2, SteelTrace (Compuware) and APT (CSR). Brian currently sits on the board of The Irish Times, Ireland’s leading daily newspaper, in addition to his Draper Esprit portfolio companies. Brian is a Computer Engineering graduate of Trinity College Dublin.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Clavis Insight, Graphcore, GetBulb
Historical: Mobile Travel Technologies, Movidius, Datahug

Ben Tompkins


Ben has been working with technology entrepreneurs and their investors in Europe and the US all his career. Prior to joining Draper Esprit, Ben was Managing Partner at Eden Ventures, a European early stage VC investor where he was responsible for investments in Green Man Gaming, Borro, Huddle, Zemanta and Reevoo, amongst others. Prior to Eden, Ben was a tech investment banker at Broadview/Jefferies where he was co-head of the Global Software, Services & Media practice and advised on deals including Blizzard Studios/World of Warcraft, Iris Software (LSE), Kelkoo, Seloger, Musiwave, Loot, Promethean, ICV and uDate. Ben also sat on the Board of Seedcamp. He is a Business Law graduate from Huddersfield University and a Barrister from Lincolns Inn.

Jonathan Sibilia

Jonathan joined Draper Esprit in 2009. Prior to joining the company he was a senior associate in the technology group at Jefferies International advising on high-profile cross-border M&A, debt & equity offerings. Previously he worked at Rothschild & CIE in Paris. He also worked at Apax Partners Corporate Finance in France. Jonathan holds a MA in Management from EM-Lyon and the University of St Gallen in Switzerland and a MA in Advanced Corporate Finance from the University of Paris IX Dauphine.

Portfolio Companies

Current: M-FIles, RavenPack

Nicola McClafferty

Nicola joined Draper Esprit in 2017. Prior to joining the company Nicola was co-founder and CEO of online retailer, Covetique, sold to ASOS plc. Nicola spent 5 years as a venture capital investor with Balderton Capital and media-consultancy Ravensbeck, focussing on early stage technology and media investments. Nicola started her career as an investment banking analyst in the technology team of Jefferies International in London.

Nicola has been a start-up mentor on the Enterprise Ireland Retailer Ready programme. She graduated from University College Dublin with a BComm in International Business & French.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Lyst, Verve

Richard Marsh

Richard is an experienced entrepreneur and venture capital investor. He founded and built Datanomic, a Cambridge-based software company which was a pioneer of Data Quality software and was acquired by Oracle. At Draper Esprit, in addition to investing and working as a Board member with portfolio companies, Richard manages the Draper Esprit EIS funds which have been the highest rated EIS (88/100) by the Tax Efficient Review for the past 4 years running. He is an Engineering graduate of Cambridge University where he also received his PhD. Richard holds an MBA from IMD, Lausanne, where he was a Sainsbury Management Fellow.


Portfolio Companies

Current: Bright Computing, Green Park Content, SportPursuit
Historical: Connectivity (sold to KCOM), DisplayData, Garlik (sold to Experian), GreenPeak Technologies (sold to Qorvo), Polatis (sold to Huber and Suhner), Psytechnics (sold to NetScout)

Vinoth Jayakumar

Vinoth joined Draper Esprit on the investment team in 2016. Prior to that he worked at a boutique management consulting firm in London for 6 years. He previously ran a micro-angel fund, investing in crowdfunded start-ups.

Vinoth is a Chartered Accountant (ACA, ICAEW) and has a degree in Accounting and Finance from the London School of Economics.

Philip O’Reilly

Philip joined Draper Esprit as a principal in 2017.  Philip previously worked as a lawyer, advising venture capital investors and early stage businesses on all aspects of financings.  Philip has also previously worked at Google and advised various startups, both in the UK and the US, in relation to corporate issues.

Philip holds a Master of Business Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania as well as degrees in law from Trinity College Dublin and the London School of Economics.

Diana Krantz

Diana joined Draper Esprit on the investment team in 2017. Prior to that, she worked for Techstars and Rocket Internet’s Somuchmore. She previously worked at a London-based hedge fund and for the Council of Europe Development Bank in Strasbourg.

Diana is from Sweden and has a degree in Economics and Business from University College London.

Max Filippov

Max is a French and Russian national previously employed as an investment associate in a PE / growth fund focused on digital media, education and gaming. Prior to that he was a consultant working on various strategy, commercial due diligence and target identification assignments. Max holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and a master’s in Technology Entrepreneurship from UCL

Eleonore Butler

Eleonore joined in 2017. Prior to that, she was working in another venture capital firm in London after some experience in financial advisory at Ondra Partners. Eleonore is from France and holds a Bachelor Degree in Politics from King’s College and a Masters in Management from London Business School.

OUR TEAM | Venture Partners


Vishal Gulati

Venture Partner

Dr. Vishal Gulati is one of the Europe’s leading digital healthcare investors. Vishal is a qualified physician and chairman of the Digital Health Forum. Over the last decade he has championed deals across areas including diagnostics, devices & biotech. He is currently on the boards of Horizon Discovery PLC and EcoEos. His investments include Napo Pharmaceuticals, Glenmark, Renovo, Phagenesis. He has also held board positions at Psynova Neurotech, Bioscale and Enigma Diagnostics. Previously, Vishal worked at Atlas Venture, The Wellcome Trust and Radiant Capital.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Horizon Discovery, Lifesum, Push Doctor

Alan Duncan

Venture Partner

Alan has been in the venture capital industry for more than twenty years, initially through establishing a corporate venturing fund for Ferranti and then with Foreign & Colonial Ventures, Newmarket Venture Capital and Prelude Ventures. He joined DFJ Esprit when it was formed in 2006.

Alan is responsible for a portfolio of Draper Esprit’s electronics investments including Phyworks, Lime Microsystems, SiConnect, XMOS and DisplayLink. His previous investments have included Alphamosaic (sold to Broadcom) and nCipher (IPO on LSE).

Alan has an electronic engineering background and gained his industrial experience in computer systems with Ferranti plc.

Alan is a past member of the European Venture Capital Association High Tech Committee and lecturer on the EVCA’s venture capital professional training courses.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Aveillant, Displaylink, Lime Microsystems, XMOS, Graphcore

Mikko Suonenlahti

Venture Partner

Mikko currently resides in Helsinki and is a venture partner with Draper Esprit. Mikko has over 30 years of experience in building businesses of which 20 of those years were as a venture capitalist in the US and Europe and 10 years of operations. He has personally led investments into Carbonite (CARB), Iobox (TEF), Pedestal Software (ATRS / SYMC), Sample Rate Systems (FLEX) SiGe Semiconductor (SWKS) and Tedasys (TLSYN) amongst others.

Portfolio Companies

Current: M-Files

David Cummings

Venture Partner

David is a venture partner responsible for the EIS co-investment funds at Draper Esprit. He is also an active angel investor in technology companies and a member of Cambridge Angels. Prior to Draper Esprit, David worked at Lazard where he was the Managing Director running the TMT group in London. He was also at KPMG and IMI. David is a graduate of Trinity Hall, Cambridge and LBS.

Portfolio Companies

Current: Unbound

OUR TEAM | Operations


Ben Wilkinson


Ben is an experienced leader of public company finance teams having served for five years as CFO of AIM listed President Energy PLC where he was responsible for all financial aspects of the group. During his time at President, Ben was a key part of the Board that undertook the investments into Argentina and Paraguay and raised $175 million across several equity issuances with shareholders such as IFC/World Bank and significant UK institutional investors.

Ben is a Chartered Accountant, FCA, with a background in M&A investment banking from ABN Amro/RBS where he was involved with multiple cross border transactions and corporate financings, both debt and equity.

Graham Redman

Group Finance Director

Graham joined the Draper Esprit team in 2006 and is responsible for the financial and IT systems of the firm.  He qualified as a Chartered Accountant with PricewaterhouseCoopers working in London, Norwich and Raleigh, primarily with SMEs before moving into industry.  After leaving PwC Graham became the Senior Accounting Manager for INC Research, a US Research Triangle based CRO before taking a Controllership position at Unitive Electronics, a venture-backed semi-conductor packaging company based in the US. Graham holds an MA in Natural Sciences from Cambridge University where he studied at Sidney Sussex College.

Isabella Cookson

Head of Marketing and Research

Isabella joined Draper Esprit as Head of Marketing and Research in 2016. Previously, she worked in two startups, Qubit and Improbable, in roles across marketing, market research and strategy. She has a First Class degree in English Literature and a Masters in International Relations from Cambridge University.

Paula Darlison

Group Administration Manager

Paula is the Group Administration Manager and has been with Draper Esprit since its inception, having worked alongside the founding team since 2000.  Prior to Draper Esprit she has worked as an executive assistant and PA at Cazenove, JP Morgan, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley throughout more than 25 years within the City of London.

Stephanie Edwards

Team Assistant

Steph is based in the London office of Draper Esprit and supports the investment team as an assistant where she administers deal-flow. Steph has experience working at other investment firms in London as a team PA and was most recently at Amadeus. Steph has an MA in Translation from London Metropolitan University & a BA in English from Oxford Brookes.

Daniel Pearce


Daniel has been the Accountant of Draper Esprit since joining the firm in 2007 working directly with the CFO on the firm’s financial reporting and back office duties. Previously he spent time working as a management accountant in both the petroleum and manufacturing industries with a couple of years working in practice. Daniel is a qualified accounting technician with 11 year’s experience behind him. In his spare time Daniel coaches football to children as a FA qualified coach.


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Tel: +44 (0)20 7931 8800

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