Today in European Tech: UK tech firm Envisics raises $50M, Vistaprint buys 99designs, and other deals/stories that caught our eyes

Today in European Tech: UK tech firm Envisics raises $50M, Vistaprint buys 99designs, and other deals/stories that caught our eyes

Hello! Here is what happened today in European tech:


- British holographics company Envisics has raised around $50 million from several automotive companies for its tech used in augmented reality. Among the investors in the Series B round are Hyundai Mobis, General Motors’ GM Ventures, SAIC Capital, the venture arm of SAIC Motors, and Van Tuyl Companies (VTC).

- Rockley Photonics, a British-American integrated optics solutions provider has closed an additional $50 million of growth funding from deep tech VCs, strategic investors, and institutional funds including Credit Suisse backed SIG-i Capital and Applied Ventures.

- Vistaprint, the European e-commerce and marketing company owned by Nasdaq-listed and Ireland-based Cimpress, has acquired freelance design marketplace 99designs.

- The Extraordinary General Meeting of Just Eat today approved the acquisition of Grubhub and the appointment of Matthew Maloney as a member of the Management Board. On 10 June 2020, Just Eat announced it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of Grubhub in an all-share transaction.

- Israeli cyber defense and deception solutions company Illusive Networks today announced it has completed a $24 million Series B financing round from new and existing investors - Spring Lake Equity Partners, Marker, New Enterprise Associates, Bessemer Venture Partners, Innovation Endeavors, Cisco, Microsoft, Citi and others.

- Rockstart, a European accelerator-VC, launched its second fund of €21 million to invest in energy startups. The Energy Fund is the second fund launched by Rockstart after its 2019 launch of the Rockstart Agrifood Fund and contributes to Rockstart’s aim of driving positive impact at a global scale throughout its accelerator and follow-on investments.

- Medical Microinstruments, an Italian medtech company developing robotics that can be used in intricate surgeries, has signed a financing agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB) granting access to up to €15 million.

- Abris, a private equity investor in Central Europe, has acquired a majority stake in Polish e-commerce delivery solutions provider Apaczka.

- London-based women's health technology firm Elvie has revealed plans to expand in the US and China following an undisclosed amount in funding from HSBC UK.

- Shippeo, which provides transportation visibility solutions, has acquired oPhone, a peer headquartered in Lyon, France. As part of the acquisition, oPhone’s team will join Shippeo, with the Lyon-based office becoming the latter's eighth in Europe.

- UK-based bond issuance platform Origin has raised Series A financing in a round led by Clearstream and Luxembourg Stock Exchange.

- We also tracked a large number of (other) European tech funding rounds and M&A transactions, all of which we are putting in a handy list for you on Friday afternoon in our weekly roundup newsletter (note: the full list is for paying customers only). Also check out our European tech news section for ongoing coverage.

Worth Knowing

- Op-ed: Finally, a pan-European set of rules on crowdfunding: here’s why this is a huge step for the industry

- European parliamentarians have written to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos asking whether the firm is spying on union activists and politicians.

- Over in the UK, the Information Commissioner’s Office has concluded its three-year investigation into Cambridge Analytica, saying no additional evidence has come to light that would change its previous assessments (which means according to the investigation CA has not misused data to influence Brexit).

- The European Commission has made commitments offered by Broadcom legally binding under EU antitrust rules. Broadcom will suspend all existing agreements containing exclusivity or quasi-exclusivity arrangements and/or leveraging provisions concerning Systems-on-a-Chip (“SoCs”) for TV set-top boxes and Internet modems, and has committed not to enter into new agreements comprising such terms.

- Two European lawmakers, Victor Negrescu and Eva Maydell, set out their plans for how a European Education Alliance can help advance education across the bloc.

- The European Commission is looking for further assurances from US video conferencing platform Zoom regarding the security of its technology, after concerns emerged earlier this year over the company’s privacy protocols.

- AltFi has published its 'Alternative Lending State of the Market Report', which offers a comprehensive overview of the alternative lending landscape in 2020.

- Op-ed: Europe should lead the way on alternatives to traditional VC

- Popular caller-identification service Truecaller has amassed 250 million monthly active users and 200 million daily active users, demonstrating an accelerated pace of growth in recent quarters even as a global pandemic has hurt most businesses, the Swedish company said today.

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