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GMG Ventures rebrands to Mercuri, closes £50M to back UK startups in seed rounds

Mercuri funding
Picture credits: Mercuri

GMG Ventures, a London-based early-stage VC firm that leads seed-stage funding rounds for UK startups, has rebranded to Mercuri. In addition to the re-branding, the firm has raised a second fund of £50 million from institutional investors. This includes a cornerstone investment from the British Business Bank, through its Enterprise Capital Funds (ECF) programme.  

Focuses on seed rounds 

Mercuri plans to lead seed-stage investments using its knowledge of emerging trends to back technology-enabled products for the new age of enterprise and the digital lifestyle of consumers. The fund’s sector focus spans four specific areas – the creation, distribution, consumption, and monetisation of content and data, with a focus on startups that enhance the way in which we communicate and engage in a professional and personal context, using AI.

Applying the team’s sector expertise at the rapidly evolving intersection of media and technology, Mercuri’s new fund will build on its track record of backing exceptional founders of UK-based startups that are reinventing traditional media models using artificial intelligence. 

Mercuri aims to make up to eight new investments a year with substantial provision for follow-on cheques while ensuring that portfolio companies share their commitment to robust data governance and AI safety.

Alan Hudson, Founding General Partner of Mercuri commented: “We are delighted to announce the launch of our first multi-LP fund at a time when this profound progress in artificial intelligence is impacting the entire media technology ecosystem, including the creator economy, gaming, music, privacy, education, community, and communication. The opportunity in the market is arguably stronger than ever right now with some complex issues facing the industry. We will endeavour to use the full breadth and depth of our network and our team’s knowledge to support the startups we invest in, to create long-lasting value.”

Ken Cooper, MD of Venture Solutions at British Business Bank said: “The British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Fund programme is key in helping to develop and maintain effective venture capital provision in the UK, lowering the barriers to entry for emerging fund managers and for those targeting under-served areas of the market. The programme has backed more than 43 funds, representing over £2 billion of finance. Our cornerstone commitment to Mercuri builds on that success and introduces a new funding option for seed-stage media-tech businesses across the UK.”

Follows £42M first round

The certified B Corp Mercuri was founded by Alan Hudson, co-founder of VentureESG. Previously, the company closed £42 million in the first fund, under its former name GMG Ventures. It was anchored as a limited partner (LP) by The Scott Trust, which among other assets owns the Guardian Media Group. 

With its new diversified LP base, including several blue chip strategic investors, including The Scott Trust. Mercuri is seeking to build on its track record to date.

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