Over the summer, we’re publishing a number of audio interviews we’ve recorded at conferences and other events in the past few months for our weekly podcast.
We recently kicked off things with an interview with Jacob de Geer, one of the founders and chief executive of Swedish mobile payments startup iZettle, followed by venture capitalist Mark Tluszcz, the Luxembourg-based co-founder and CEO of Mangrove Capital Partners, which has backed the likes of Skype, Wix, Lesara, FreedomPop, OpenX and Outfittery.
Highland Europe, as it’s more commonly referred to, is focused on backing e-commerce, software and business services companies with a particular emphasis on emerging growth opportunities in Europe. The firm recently raised a new €332 million investment fund and typically invests between €10 million and €30 million per deal.
Highland Europe flies under the radar, relatively speaking, even though it has stakes in high-profile growth companies like GetYourGuide, Brandwatch, WeTransfer and Outfittery. This week, it saw an exit with France’s Essilor acquiring UK-based MyOptique Group, an online platform for sales of prescription glasses, contact lenses and sunglasses.
Mullen walked us through Highland Europe’s investment strategy and thesis, as well as its geographic and vertical focus. We also discussed Europe’s late-stage funding gap, and how the region has changed over the past few years and what needs to change for the European tech scene to mature.