This Week in European Tech: Electric solar car maker Sono Motors went public, Balderton and Keen raise new funds, AI biotech startup Owkin nabs $180 million, and more

This Week in European Tech: Electric solar car maker Sono Motors went public, Balderton and Keen raise new funds, AI biotech startup Owkin nabs $180 million, and more

Happy Friday!

This week, the research team tracked more than 125 tech funding deals worth over €1.8 billion, and over 35 exits, M&A transactions, and rumours, and related news stories across Europe, including Russia and Turkey.

As always, we are putting all of them together for you in a handy list sent in our round-up newsletter (note: the full list is for paying customers only).

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Here's an overview of the biggest European tech news items for the past week (subscribe to our free newsletter to get this round-up in your inbox every Monday morning).

This week:

1) London’s omnipresent Balderton Capital has announced its second fund of this year, a $600 million behemoth that is aimed at backing early-stage companies. The fund is sector agnostic, and alongside the cash, portfolio companies are supported by Balderton’s marketing, finance, and legal services.

2) On Wednesday, Sono Group, the Munich-based parent company to electric solar car maker Sono Motors, went public. It opened for trading on the Nasdaq at $20.06 after the IPO was initially priced at $15, but shares hit a high of $38.74 before the market closed. The company currently has a $4 billion+ market cap.

3)Parisian AI biotech startup Owkin has received a $180 million investment from multi-national pharmaceutical giant Sanofi.

4) Netlify, a Danish-founded cloud computing company providing hosting and serverless backend services for static websites, has closed a $105 million series D funding round led by Bessemer Venture Partners. The company's existing investors - Andreessen Horowitz, BOND, EQT Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, Mango Capital and Menlo Ventures - also participated.

5) Britain on Tuesday ordered an in-depth investigation of Nvidia's planned $50 billion+ acquisition of UK-based chip designer Arm, another hurdle for a deal that is being scrutinised in every major tech market.

6) Cloud-based business intelligence platform for hoteliers and hotel management companies OTA Insight has raised $80 million in a Series B funding round.

7) UK-based, and Aim-listed GB Group is snapping up US identity verification company Acuant in a $736 million deal.

8) German remote desktop software startup AnyDesk has announced a $70 million round to fuel its growth. The Stuttgart-based company said that the Series C values it at over $600 million.

9) Ultraleap, a Bristol-based leader in interface technologies such as hand-tracking and mid-air haptics, has secured £60 million in a Series D funding round from significant new investors including Tencent, British Patient Capital through its Future Fund, and CMB.

10) Amsterdam’s “radically human venture capital firm” Keen Venture Partners has left the rookie ranks and announced the first close of their second fund at €120 million. The firm is targeting €150 million and expects a final close sometime next year.


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Bonus links:

- EU lawmakers have reached a breakthrough on how to target tech companies, including Apple and Google, as part of moves by Brussels to curb anti-competitive practices in the digital economy. The European Parliament’s main political parties agreed on Wednesday to a deal that would apply to companies with a market capitalisation of at least €80 billion.

- How a plan drawn up on a napkin turned GP Bullhound into a $100 million a year business.

- Netherlands-based grocery retail company Ahold Delhaize has announced a new growth and investment plan, and will increase its investments in digital, online, data, automation and omnichannel capabilities. It also announced plans to conduct an IPO for Dutch online retailer in the second half of next year.

- Business messaging app Slack has appointed a new head of Europe following strong annual growth across the continent. Pip White, who held a senior leadership position at Salesforce before joining Google Cloud as Managing Director for the UK&I, has been appointed Slack’s SVP and GM of EMEA.

- Founded in Paris, kickstarted in Silicon Valley, and now based in New York, Aircall is the poster child for French founders who are successfully building bridges between Europe and the US.

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