Reykjavik and Copenhagen-based Crowberry Capital, a VC firm that invests in Seed and early-stage rounds of funding, announced today that it has launched a new $90M (approx €76M) fund – Crowberry II.
The company is also planning a second close fund for July 2022 which will bring in an additional $40M (approx €33.8M).
Crowberry II fund follows Crowberry Capital’s fund I where it raised $40M (approx €33.8M) in 2017 to support companies from multiple sectors including Gaming, SaaS, Healthtech, and Fintech.
Investors in this round
The current round was led by EIF (European Investment Fund) who signed a €20M participation in Crowberry Fund II. In addition, the fund was also backed by the EU’s “InnovFin Equity” programme. This is InnovFin Equity’s first VC fund in Iceland, one of the first non-EU countries to access Horizon 2020 back in 2014.
Icelandic Pension funds, several family offices, and angel investors including David Helgason, founder of Unity Technologies also participated.
How will the funds be utilised?
Crowberry II fund aims to support the “most promising startups” in the Nordics, as well as invest in the untapped business opportunities in inclusivity and diversity. The fund will support early-stage tech entrepreneurs in the Nordics with a focus on a broad range of B2B and B2C seed-stage companies.
Since its inception in 2017, Crowberry Capital has invested in every configuration of teams – female-only, male-only, or mixed. Its previous fund (Crowberry I) featured 15 companies, 33 per cent of which had female CEOs.
As with its previous fund, Crowberry Capital will focus on supporting and enhancing businesses in emerging tech sectors, rather than pursuing short-term exits from seemingly safe bets. With its new fund, the firm is happy to commit early either as a lead investor or as part of a group.
About Crowberry Capital
Crowberry Capital is a female-led venture capital firm founded by Helga Valfells, Hekla Arnardottir, and Jenny Ruth Hrafnsdottir. The firm invests at seed and early-stages in “outstanding” Nordic teams building global businesses around technology advantages.
Helga Valfells says, “In 2017, we saw that there was a gap in the market when it came to early-stage funding in the Nordics. We realised that we could have a greater impact – and make real change – by founding our own fund. So we resigned from our very comfortable roles with a large team and started out like true entrepreneurs with nothing and raised our first fund, Crowberry I, in six months.”
Crowberry Capital’s investments
The firm has backed startups from Seed to exit. The founding partners behind CrowberryCapital have worked together for over seven years and have managed over 60 technology startups, negotiated a total of 15 exits, and have made 30 seed investments.
Crowberry Capital’s investments include AI-powered fintech company, Lucinity; a co-investment with Inventure and Norrsken VC in digital health company, Elsa Science; Garden.io, the first company to make the framework for developers to develop, test, and deploy Kubernetes applications (founded by serial entrepreneurs with co-investment from Danish VC, byFounders, and Berlin-based Fly Ventures); and the joint backing – alongside Andreessen Horowitz – of next-generation mobile games developer, Mainframe.
Crowberry Capital has also backed one of the few Nordic investment firms run by an all-female team, Unconventional Ventures – a micro-fund based in Copenhagen.
Hekla Arnardottir explains, “An incorrect assumption is that because we are women, we are only interested in supporting female founders. As our investment record shows, we support companies because they are game-changers, irrespective of the gender of their senior team members. However, we also benefit, as an all-female team, from circumspection which means that we can see potential in businesses and sectors which are typically overlooked by others in our space.”
“Inclusivity is good for business, and through being open and approachable, your deal flow multiplies in parallel to your talent pool, and businesses are built with a broader potential user base. It’s crazy that in 2020, female-led startups received just 2.3 per cent of VC Funding, yet Crowberry considers this to be an opportunity: where the Nordics lead in gender equality on a societal level, we want to show that the region can also show the way in terms of inventive venture support,” adds Arnardottir.