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.