Today, angel investment group Syndicate One announced the completion of an initial €4.8 million close of its debut fund after opening its capital to external investors for the first time in 2023.
A second (already oversubscribed) close is planned for early 2024.
Syndicate One aims to accelerate the self-reinforcing cycle of entrepreneurial success in Belgium.
Since its launch in early 2022, Syndicate One has invested in high-potential Belgian early-stage tech startups such as Techwolf, Aikido, SAPI, Kennek, Sirona Technologies and others and connected their founders with Belgian entrepreneurs and operators who have scaled businesses such as Collibra, Showpad, Qover and Cowboy before.
More than 70 external investors answered the call for external funding in this initial close: entrepreneurs, families, and institutional investors who reflect the forces driving the Belgian economic landscape.
This enables Syndicate One to support portfolio companies more through industry expertise, potential customer intros and even follow-on capital and involve more stakeholders throughout the country in initiatives to improve Belgium’s tech ecosystem more holistically.
Syndicate One has also expanded its team with an additional nine members, with more to follow in 2024.
Giulia Van Waeyenberge from Sofina shared:
"Sofina is one of Belgium’s largest holding companies with €9 billion in assets under management, a growth investor, and a partner in top-tier VC funds worldwide. It will be the anchor investor for this new fund.
“Consistent with our goal to create sustainable economic value by supporting innovative businesses, we’re happy to partner with Syndicate One.
Bringing Belgium's top tech talent together in one startup ecosystem will help scale Belgian tech innovation to new heights.”
Institutional investors such as SFPIM, Wallonie Entreprendre, and Finance Brussels joined the ranks along with a significant number of Belgian families and family offices, including Balcaen, Vlerick, Berghmans, De Clerck, Hannecart, Vindevogel, Leysen, Van Thillo, and Rolin.
Laurens De Poorter, the founder of Syndicate One, shared:
“Belgium has everything it takes to be a flourishing tech ecosystem, but we need to work together to make that happen. This new fund adds new stakeholders to our platform built on the union of successful Belgian tech entrepreneurs.
The commitment of these institutional investors, government funds, and family offices allows us to make more and larger investments in Belgian tech startups, extend our network with more professionals who can help our portfolio companies thrive, and push for systemic change with all the relevant stakeholders.”
Founders helping founders
Syndicate One was built upon the notion that the best support for scaling successful tech ventures comes from those who have done it before. With that idea in mind, a whole generation of Belgian entrepreneurs was brought on board.
Entrepreneurs investing in this initial close include Jeroen de Wit (Teamleader), Stephane Kurgan (Index Ventures, ex-King), Stijn Christiaens (Collibra), Pieterjan Bouten (Showpad), Martijn Theeuwissen (Datacamp), Sébastien Deletaille (Rosa), Olivier Verdin (AppTweak), Quentin Nickmans (Hexa), Matthias Geeroms (OTA Insights), Cedric De Vleeschauwer (Alan), Michel Akkermans (ex Clear2Pay), Guillaume van Rijckevorsel (Soil Capital, former Darts-ip), Alexandre Cardon (Dogchef, ex-Qustomer), Sam Heymans (Lizy), Bart Becks (Euractiv), Tim Dierckxsens (Venly).
Many more have committed to follow on for the final close of the fund.
Pieterjan Bouten, co-founder of Showpad, commented:
“Belgium's technology ecosystem is rapidly evolving, yet it continues to trail behind several other regions.
The Syndicate One initiative stands out as a remarkable endeavor, primarily due to its clear and targeted mission.
What sets it apart even further is the extraordinary group of people it brings together – a unique blend of entrepreneurs and operators that promises to propel the Belgian tech scene forward.”
Stijn Christiaens, co-founder of Collibra, added:
“There is always plenty of work on the schedule, and the Syndicate One team knows this first-hand.
When they ask for a call with a Belgian founder, I know there must be a good reason so I'll happily find time.
They exemplify the power of a well-run network and you can already see their impact on the Belgian tech ecosystem."
New members joining Syndicate One
In parallel with this initial close, new members are growing the ranks of Syndicate One: Laurens De Beyter (N26), Pierrine Carlier (ex-Proxyclic, Javry), Sibylle Greindl (ex-Accountable), Martin Schmitz (DataCamp), Dieter Wachters (ex-Collibra, Raito), Pauline Brunel (Blackfin), Nicolas Vereecke (Bitcraft), Cedric Cops (Mediahuis Ventures), and Tiny De Waele (Deliverect).
Together with the initial Syndicate One team, they will bring their entrepreneurial and operational experience to the scouting and support of high-potential Belgian early-stage startups.