London-based venture capital firm Concept Ventures has launched £50 million fund in the U.K to back over 60 startups in its pre-seed stage. According to the company, it is the largest dedicated pre-seed fund in the U.K.
The oversubscribed fund includes a £30 million commitment from the British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Funds (ECF) programme, the U.K. government’s economic development bank.
The ticket size of its investment would be in the range of £100,000-£600,000. The company will invest in 60 startups in a span of five years.
Founded in 2018, the VC has backed over 100 founders at the pre-seed stage, with Concept backed-founders seeing a 71 per cent graduation rate from pre-seed onward. The new companies will join the portfolio companies, including corporate gifting platform Reachdesk, live-streaming video pioneers Condense, and female financial education platform, Your Juno.
According to the company, the team centres its decision-making around the founder’s personality, deploying a data-led approach to identify the traits and characteristics key to entrepreneurial success. The VC is on the lookout for more personality-led investments in companies transforming how we work, play, and learn.
Reece Chowdhry, founder and general partner of Concept Ventures, said, “There is a major gap in the pre-seed ecosystem, with too few funds offering dedicated pre-seed expertise. We are focused on this critical stage of a company’s life cycle and can provide the funding, expertise, and network they need to succeed. We’re deeply committed to setting our portfolio up for future success.”
The fund’s LP base consists of 80 per cent ethnic minorities and 18 per cent women, and over 70 per cent of the fund’s LPs are current or exited founders, collectively responsible for a combined £2B in enterprise value. It includes Ahluwalia Family Office, Y-Combinator-backed founders such as Henry De Zoete, and senior global technology executives.
Ken Cooper, managing director of venture solutions at the British Business Bank, added: “The British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Funds programme is key in helping to develop and maintain effective venture capital provision in the U.K., lowering the barriers to entry for emerging fund managers and those targeting under-served areas of the market. Our cornerstone commitment to Concept Ventures will help them to provide finance and support to young and diverse, high-potential businesses at the pre-seed stage, helping to close the early stage equity funding gap.”