Skype Founders Announce New $165m Fund For Disruptive European Startups

Skype Founders Announce New $165m Fund For Disruptive European Startups

Skype founders, Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis, have raised $165 million for a second fund focused on investing in “disruptive” early-stage European technology.

Through their London based Atomico Ventures firm, the duo will focus on early-stage software and internet companies that have the potential to be “transformative”, Mr Zennström told the Financial Times.

The goal is to provide outsized returns to investors over the long-term . The fund will achieve this by investing in outstanding management teams, who address large market opportunities that leverage innovative business models and transformational technologies.

“The type of companies we are looking at are consumer-facing and also small business . . . that do not need to build up sales forces around the world to scale and grow… These are the kinds of companies like Skype, Google and Facebook who, if the business model is really working, they can get large revenues without having to go through too many financing rounds.”

Atomico will look for opportunities all over Europe but London will remain its hub.

Its existing portfolio companies include Viagogo, the ticket reselling site; Mydeco, a home furnishings site; Seesmic, the social media application suite and Jolicloud, the netbook OS.

It hasn’t all been plain sailing for the pair, they were also investors Joost – an online TV shows distribution service. The assets of this service were sold to Adconion Media Group in November 2009.

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