new 6 million seed fund just announced by Berlin-based Team Europe Ventures. In the past we've talked about Europe's entrepreneurial woes, most notably a dearth of seed funding due to having a culture largely averse to taking risks financially. This new fund is a good step towards changing that trend and keeping more startups from looking for funding elsewhere.Early stage startups in Europe will be the primary beneficiaries of a
The 6 million fund (over $8 million) will provide up to 500,000 to early stage startups in the Internet and mobile Internet spaces over the next three years. Team Europe plans to selectively choose four to five startups each year to receive the funding, rather than quickly spreading the wealth around to any worthy recipient.
"If we feel that a business will succeed without us, but will be quicker, larger, nicer with us - than it's a case for us," said Team Europe partner Kolja Hebenstreit in a press release Tuesday. "Experience shows that decisive decisions are often made during the foundation phase, so we think it's good to speak with experienced potential partners as early as possible."
Team Europe has also rounded up entrepreneurs from past investments and active angel investors to assist in the disbursement of the funds, including Matthias Spieß of Leipzig-based Spreadshirt, and angel Günther Faltin.
"These are all people who are active in the Internet space and with whom we have successfully worked together in the past," said partner Lukasz Gadowski, explaining the "tightly-knit network of experts" that will help Team Europe pick early stage companies to fund.
Hopefully this fund will start a trend among European venture capital firms. As we mentioned in February, many European startups have been looking to American incubators to help them get off the ground. If funds like these succeed, we could see these numbers go down over time, and more successful startups could emerge from Europe. Most VCs in Europe look for proven models and a solid financial foundations, so seed funds like Team Europe's and organizations like Seedcamp can help startups get a boost into the line of sight of VCs providing second, third and fourth round funding.