Google is to invest $100 million (£58.4 million) in European tech start-ups, as it expands its capital funding business with a new base in London.
Google Ventures was launched in 2009, and has since invested in over 250 portfolio companies in a range of sectors, such healthcare firms Flatiron Health and SynapDx, affordable solar energy business, Clean Power Finance, and controversial taxi app, Uber.
The internet giant has now set its sights on the European tech scene, as interest increases in the start-up 'hubs' in cities such as London and Berlin, following a number of success stories.
“We believe Europe’s startup scene has enormous potential,” said Bill Maris, managing partner at Google Ventures, in a blog post. “We’ve seen compelling new companies emerge from places like London, Paris, Berlin, the Nordic region and beyond—SoundCloud, Spotify, Supercell and many others,”
The fund will be based in offices in Clerkenwell Road near London’s ‘Silicon Roundabout’, according to the Financial Times, but the funds will be invested throughout Europe.
Rumours had been circulating for weeks that Google Ventures, which has around £800 million in venture capital, would move into Europe.
Google is not the only VC firm to target European start-ups in recent months, with Index Ventures raising $550 million (£328 million) to invest in US and European firms.