Venture Capital/Analysis/

The list: June’s hottest European seed investments

June was an active month for Europe’s seed investors, and a record breaking month in some countries.

By Freya Pratty

Credit: Coupleness founder Jenny Holmström.

June was an active month for Europe’s seed investors. It was also a recordbreaking month in some countries Electra, an electric vehicle startup, secured France’s largest ever seed round at €15m.

The record’s in line with the general trajectory of Europe’s seed funding. Across the last ten years, the average round size has increased fivefold, from €0.3m in 2011 to €1.5m in 2021.

According to Dealroom, there were 229 seed rounds in Europe in June though the figure is likely to be higher due to the reporting lag. Within that data, 64 of the rounds were for British companies and France had the second highest number: 33. 

This month, Europe’s seed investments followed a number of trends, focused on sectors that are set to benefit from the gradual reopening of Europe’s Covid-19 restrictions: from tools to help companies adjust to hybrid working, to dating and event tech. 

Old favourites like healthtech and fintech also continued to draw in early stage investment across June.

Here are the sectors and a few of the startups that attracted early stage capital in Europe this month. 

Hybrid working tools

As Europe starts to open up again, employers across the continent are grappling with how to organise their teams in the new hybrid working environment — and early-stage investors seem keen to back startups likely to capitalise off the trend.

  • Remi, a German startup that runs a platform to help build a good working culture across remote teams, raised €1.2m from btov Partners. Angel investors such as Eyeo founder Tim Schumacher and Tier CPO Georgie Smallwood also joined the round.
  • Desana, an on-demand workspace network based out of Edinburgh, raised $4m in seed funding led by PropTech1 Ventures, BGF and existing investor Techstart Ventures. Customers purchase a certain number of ‘credits’ each month which can be used by employees to work at workspaces across Europe.
  • Time is Ltd, a Czech company working on using analytics to find the optimum collaboration strategies for remote teams, raised $5.6m in late seed funding. It was led by angel investor Mike Chalfen of Chalfen Ventures, an interesting example of an angel leading such a large round.

Social

Love’s in the air again as restrictions across Europe lift, meaning singles can meet in person again. Europe’s not had many dating app investments recently, but seed investors look keen to start backing the sector again.

  • Smitten, an Icelandic dating app aimed at Gen Z, raised a $2.7m seed round from byFounders and others. We spoke with the company earlier in June about their plans to expand other parts of Europe.
  • Coupleness, a Swedish relationship wellness app, raised $1.1m in seed funding led by Icebreaker. Joachim Hedenius, the cofounder of healthtech Kry, also participated as an angel investor.
  • Heja, a Swedish startup running a social platform for youth players, sports coaches and parents, has raised $4.2m in a round led by Peak Capital. 

Events

Also capitalising off the tantalising prospect of the world reopening, two European startups focused on in-person events nabbed seed funding last month. 

  • TicketSwap, an Amsterdam-based startup that helps people buy and sell event tickets online, raised €8.2m in its first-ever funding round from Million Monkeys. 
  • VenueScanner, a UK startup that helps people book venues online, raised a $1.5m round led by Rainta Capital and ACF investors.

Health

The healthtech funding surge continues, with a number of early-stage startups securing funding in June. They span a range of industries, from mental health to tech that monitors the instant effects of certain foods on your body.

  • Hertility Health, a UK company focused on women’s healthtech, raised £4.2m led by LocalGlobe and Venrex. The company offers fertility and hormone testing, menopause, miscarriage, postnatal care, polycyctic ovarian syndrome and endometriosis testing.
  • Thymia, a British startup working on developing video games to help monitor depression, raised a $1.1m seed round led by Kodori AG and Calm/Storm. We chatted to the company about how it all works.
  • Veri, a Finnish startup working on wearables technology that tracks the impact of foods on your glucose levels, raised $4m in a round led by PROFounders. 

Sustainability

Early stage investors have also continued to back startups focused on sustainability, from lower-waste packaging solutions to ocean cleanup platforms. 

  • Electra, the startup that secured France’s largest ever seed round at €15m in June, develops charging stations for EVs. The company aims to make the tech reliable and fast, charging cars in 15 to 30 minutes. The round’s part of a wider increase in investment into charging tech in Europe. 
  • Cleanhub, a Berlin-based ocean cleanup organising platform, raised just under €4m in a seed round led by Lakestar and 468 Capital. The company connects brands with products that might end up in the ocean with plastic collection partners in the coastal regions of developing countries.
  • Oxwash, a startup based in Oxford developing greener alternatives for the washing and dry cleaning industry, raised a $3m seed round. It included angel investment from Holly and Sam Branson, the children of Richard Branson — founder of the Virgin Group.
  • Green Lithium, a UK company developing the country’s first large-scale lithium refinery, raised £1.6m. The product’s used in EVs an industry that’s seen increasing investor appetite recently. 

Fintech

Last year, European fintechs raised more than any other industry. That was driven by a number of huge rounds, but seed investors also continue to pile money into the sector.

  • Airbank, a Berlin-based fintech aimed at helping startups and SMEs manage their cash better, closed a €2.5m seed round that saw backing from Accel scout Luca Ascani and Sequoia scout Marc McCabe.  
  • Sentinels, a Dutch company running a financial transaction monitoring system raised £4.9m in a round led by INKEF Capital. The company uses AI to reduce repetitive tasks for other fintech companies, and is relied on by the likes of payments unicorn Mollie. 

Proptech

The real estate sector’s innovating fast and the way we buy and sell property is being reimagined. It’s a transformation Europe’s seed investors look keen to be in on. 

  • Kodehyve, a Luxembourg-based software company working on a platform for managing construction and commercialisation projects, raised a €1m seed round. The funding was raised from investors in Luxembourg and Singapore.
  • Lofti, a UK property management platform for tenants, homeowners and landlords has raised a $1.5m seed round from Taiwanaese family office fund WoodJC, another example of increasing interest in European tech from Asian investors.
  • SearchSmartly, another UK property startup, raised £1.25m earlier this month in seed investment. The company helps customers to search online for properties to buy, filtering it down to ones it thinks will be most interesting to a buyer. The money comes from Matt Cooper, founder of Carwow James Hind; serial proptech investor Antony Senny; Founders Factory; and IFG.VC.

You can read Sifted’s report on the wider construction sector here.

The rest…

  • CheckStep, a British startup using AI to monitor comments online, has raised £1.3m. The round was led by Shutterstock’s founder Jon Oringer, the CBO of Uber Emil Michael and Microsoft’s former head of corporate strategy Charles Songhurst.

Freya Pratty is Sifted’s news reporter. She tweets from @FPratty

Join the conversation

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of