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American VC Hoxton Ventures raises $215M to back early-stage ventures in Europe

Hoxton Ventures Founders

Oversubscribed by 43%, surpassing its initial target of $150M, Hoxton Ventures’ new fund, Hoxton III, saw inflows of $215M from investors. The fund is purposed to help build and scale Europe’s most promising early-stage start-ups. 

“This is our largest fund yet and a reflection of the emergence of Europe as a growth market for tech startups,” said Hussein Kanji, a partner at Hoxton.

EU tech is booming

Tech globally resonates with Silicon Valley, and it’s understandable. The world’s most recognized and impactful tech firms such as Microsoft, Alphabet (Google), Amazon and Meta, just to name a few, have roots there.

EU tech has long been overlooked, but this has been steadily changing in the past years. Tech innovation has especially risen and consequently led to the increase in Venture Capital and Private Equity deals within the industry.

“When we founded Hoxton eight years ago, there was doubt that Europe could produce winning tech companies. Last year, Europe attracted more capital than China with $116 billion invested, up from $8 billion a decade ago. Great companies are being built in Europe, and we’re proud to be one of the earliest American VCs to spot this opportunity.” added Hussein Kanji.

American VCs investing in Europe

Hoxton Ventures was founded in 2013 by American partners Hussein Kanji and Rob Kniaz. The firm invests in seed-stage companies which are building new market categories, with a goal to expand into the US. Since then, Hoxton has made 63 investments to date, with 19 from the new fund.

It typically invests between $500,000 and $5M into pre-seed and seed-stage companies, following its capital through the life of the company. The company boasts some of the highest returns in Europe arising from early investments in current large caps such as Deliveroo, Darktrace and Babylon Health.

“We look for companies that have the ambition to scale globally, not just locally,” said Charles Seely, an entrepreneur and investor who settled in London, having come from Silicon Valley. “Our goal is to be the first and best partner for European founders with the ambition to scale. I spent most of my life building and investing in companies at a seed stage, and look forward to using my connections in the U.S. to help our portfolio expand outside of the European market.”

The horizon for Hoxton

Hoxton Ventures has just announced that it has added Charles Seely to the team as an equal partner. Seely was most recently the advisor to Cambridge Quantum, which merged with Honeywell Quantum Solutions to form Quantinuum. He’s also led 60+ early-stage investments at his prior fund, including investments in Honey, Ouster, Maven, Zipline, and Zume.

Seely was quite instrumental in co-leading a $6M seed round invested in a UK start-up, Bother, which is a grocery delivery company. The innovative company uses AI to pre-fill their customer’s baskets with items based on previous buying frequency. Bother is currently categorized as one of Europe’s fastest-growing companies. Other high promising companies in Hoxton’s portfolio include a language learning platform called Preply, an infrastructure-as-code firm Spacelift, augmented reality firm XYZ and pharma tech start-up Peptone.

“We think our second fund has two times as many potential unicorns than our first fund which did pretty darn well,” commented Hussein Kanji, Partner Hoxton Ventures.

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