Index raises €350m for latest fund

Index Ventures has belied an uncertain fundraising environment for venture firms by raising a €350 million fund that was “many times oversubscribed”.

Index Ventures, a European venture capital firm, has closed a €350 million ($460 million) fund and appointed three new partners.
The fund was “many times oversubscribed” from existing investors alone, according to Index partner David Rimer. However, the firm chose to extend the offering to “a small group of new investors”, particularly in the US, in order to diversify its investor base. The firm raised all the money in-house, without the help of a placement agent.

Its success is in stark contrast to other European venture capital firms who have struggled to raise money in recent years.

This is Index’s fourth venture fund, and takes the firm’s capital under management to more than €1 billion ($1.3 billion). The fund, which will be invested over a three-year period, will target European companies in the IT and life sciences sectors. It may also look to invest in clean technology opportunities.

The firm has also beefed up its advisory capability by recruiting two former entrepreneurs to the partnership. Saul Klein, the founder of Video Island and a former marketing vice president at Skype, joins Index as a venture partner, as does Mark De Boer, the founder of PanGenetics. The firm has also promoted to partner Michèle Ollier, who joined Index’s life sciences team in 2006 after an early career in the pharmaceutical industry.

Index wants to help its portfolio companies expand their horizons. General partner Bernard Dallé said: “Everything we do is about helping entrepreneurs move quickly to become global market leaders. Success for European companies has depended on their ability to extend their geographical reach quickly and cost-effectively.”

Index, which was founded in 1996, has previously backed success stories like open source software company MySQL, internet telecom group Skype, online betting exchange Betfair, and antibody group Genmab.