There’s been a lot of chatter in the European VC space over recent weeks. And now, adding to the conversation, Paris-based Alven has just announced its sixth generation fund. The initial target was €300 million, but Fund VI has closed at a hard cap of €350 million – making it the largest early-stage fund raised in France.
Alven VI secured commitments from a wide range of high-quality European, North American and other global institutions, and all investors in the prior fund are reinvesting. Known for its eye for making unicorn investments, Alven has been a part of the success stories of Qonto, Dataiku, Algolia, Stripe and Ankorstore, and now has €2 billion in assets under management.
Launched in 2000, Alven is an early-stage fund centred in Paris but with a global reach. The firm recently opened a new London office and has about 160 European teams backed across Europe and the US. The French investors have extensive experience backing and supporting exceptional founders at the earliest stages, writing cheques to kickstart growth ranging from €100k to €15 million, with substantial reserves for follow on investments.
Guillaume Aubin and Charles Letourneur, co-founders of Alven, said: “We pride ourselves in building long term relationships with entrepreneurs, and this also applies to investors in Alven. Not only our existing LPs have continually invested in us, but we’ve also welcomed a number of new investors that want to be part of the French Tech success story”.
Alongside their unicorn success and impressive portfolio, the company has also realized more than 70 exits, including the more recent sale of Sqreen to Datadog (NASDAQ: DDOG), Cardiologs to Philips (NYSE: PHG) and Frichti to Gorillas.
Beyond the money, Alven supports portfolio companies with its internal People Operations team, providing founders with advisory, access to proprietary talent pools, local industry benchmarks, content and processes to enable them to execute and scale even faster.
The team also recently launched Operation3, the first talent program dedicated to identifying and training tomorrow’s best web3 operators as well as a number of initiatives to foster and nurture a pool of female executives to promote diversity within its portfolio executive committees.
Given the very competitive nature of the European talent market, this deeply-rooted positioning has been a key success factor for Alven and has made it a very attractive platform for founders and US VCs to partner with, as evidenced by the high number of co-lead investments with top tier US funds.
The investment company promotes a multi-sector specialist approach, where each investor should bring domain expertise and relationships to the table. Therefore, Alven will continue to build on its successes in fintech, marketplaces, enterprise software, social & entertainment. There will also be an emphasis on new growth areas in crypto (Alven recently invested in Kaiko, a market data provider for digital assets), but also other areas in developer and data tooling as well as climate tech, exemplified by the new fund’s recent investments in Mindee (a document parsing tool for developers), MyTraffic (physical location data analytics), Carbonfact (a carbon footprint API) and Stoik (data-driven cyber insurance).
A portion of this new fund will be deployed across Europe, as well as in European founders in the US in sectors where the firm has built deep expertise.