French venture capital firm Partech has raised a $100 million Seed fund to invest in post-COVID19 trends in health, work, commerce, finance, mobility, and computing.
Partech, which has in the past backed UK data startup Privitar and French fintech company October, will be scouting the European, US, and Asian ecosystems.
“While 3 billion people are confined at home, digitalization is bound to dramatically accelerate across sectors and ‘remote’ is emerging as a new standard,” reads the announcement post.
“This redefines how people live, work and consume, while businesses have to massively switch online and reinvent themselves. Startups closing Seed rounds at the moment are ideally positioned to seize the opportunities lying ahead in the new ‘normal’ world, while incumbents are dealing with old infrastructure and massive cost cutting plans,” it adds.
The new investment vehicle, known as the Partech Entrepreneur III Fund, has already been deployed into eight new investments with two more set to close.
Funds are raising but coronavirus is affecting deals
Today’s news comes after several other well-known investment firms announced the closure of sizeable funds targeting European tech companies.
Index Ventures, arguably one of the most prominent VC funds, closed a $2 billion investment fund just weeks ago.
A press release at the time said $1.2 billion would go towards backing grown rounds with the remaining $800 million going towards supporting early stage startups.
Back in February — before the coronavirus pandemic began to disrupt business operations outside of China (where the virus is first thought to have originated) — Atomico closed a $820 million fund to back “mission-driven” European tech startups.
The firm, founded by Skype’s co-founder Niklas Zennstrom, will target Series A and beyond.
On paper, it looks like European tech companies are well served by venture capital investors and their willingness to spend even in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic but recent studies suggest otherwise.
Europe saw record VC spending in the first quarter of 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic is expected to have a significant impact on deals in the ecosystem. Investors may shift their focus to their existing portfolio in detriment of backing new companies whose founders they’re unable to meet in person.
The pandemic is also threatening the flow of US capital into European tech companies as investors on the other side of the Atlantic become more insular and look to support homegrown businesses.