At a time when many startups have an extra strong need for venture capital, Accelerace has secured a significant investment from Færchfonden, Vækstfonden and Denmark’s largest start-up community Symbion. The investment fund, Accelerace Invest II, will provide much-needed capital to a total of 90 Danish startups over the next three years.
There is no industry in Denmark that has not been affected by the corona crisis. The Danish entrepreneurs are no exception.
It is therefore crucial that Danish startups have access to capital when Denmark is restarting after the corona crisis. After some difficult months, the new fund Accelerace Invest II is a long-awaited helping hand for entrepreneurs, who can get an investment of up to DKK 500,000.
The Danish players Færchfonden, Vækstfonden and Symbion are behind the fund, with the goal of investing in early-stage Danish startups.
“As a result of the corona crisis, there are unfortunately many startups that desperately lack liquidity to be able to grow. With Accelerace Invest II, we can help many of these companies to further develop their business. And with the ambition of investing in 30 new startups every year, this is a very aggressive and new investment strategy for the Danish market. It will be a hefty price tag for the Danish society, both in economic growth and employment, if we do not manage to lift the new generation of startups“, says Peter Torstensen, Managing Partner and CEO of Accelerace.
The largest of its kind
Accelerace Invest II is one of the only investment funds in Denmark that is dedicated to solely invest in newly established startups, also called pre-seeds. That is, companies that do not yet have a product or service on the market. Over the next three years, the fund will invest in 90 different startups, which makes Accelerace Invest II the largest Danish fund in terms of number of investments. Let’s put it into perspective: usually, a venture capital fund invests in about 5 to 10 startups per year.
Claus Omann Jensen from Færchfonden explains the motives behind investing in early-stage startups:
“We are incredibly proud that Færchfonden’s work with entrepreneurship in Northwest Jutland is culminating with the establishment of Accelerace Invest II. There is a great need for financing very early-stage startups in Northwest Jutland as well. An investment in Accelerace Invest II can definitely help to create a good foundation for future economic growth and employment. More specifically, several of our successful startups in Struer, under the auspices of Sound Hub Denmark, have to delay their growth because of lack of capital. With partners such as Vækstfonden, Symbion and the Accelerace team, there will be weight and knowledge behind the individual investments that startups can take advantage of .”
“Færchfonden has, in collaboration with Vækstfonden and Symbion, previously invested in Accelerace with great success and thus in the development of entrepreneurs and new jobs. The development of new ideas and businesses is the prerequisite for economic growth and employment, which is the best remedy for the current crisis. Accelerace has proven that their formula works and that they are able to give entrepreneurs the right tools, so we are happy and optimistic with the establishment of the new fund,” says Claus Omann Jensen.
Vækstfonden is also looking forward to this new initiative, where entrepreneurs get access to venture capital:
“At Vækstfonden, our work centres around developing the companies that Denmark cannot miss. In a time of significant challenges as a result of COVID-19, I am incredibly pleased that Accelerace Invest Fund II becomes reality. Together with Færchfonden, Symbion, the investment team and Accelerace’s stakeholders, an important collaboration is starting, which will help secure new capital for early-stage Danish entrepreneurs – those we will live off in the future,” says Mikkel Hesselgren, Head of Fund of funds at Vækstfonden.
Extension of the accelerator program
For startups to be considered, they must have been part of Accelerace’s award-winning accelerator program. According to Peter Torstensen, there is a very simple reason for this:
“To provide early-stage startups with the opportunity to receive investment from the fund, it requires that we have an in-depth knowledge of them. And the best way to get to know each other is to work together for a period of time. That way we can help develop their business, gain insight into how the team in the startup works and startups get a chance to figure out if we are the right investor for them.”
Since 2008, Accelerace has helped 700+ Danish and international startups, including Trustpilot and Templafy, of which over 80% are still active. Accelerace has made 67 pre-seed investments in startups, who have been through the accelerator program and have started partnerships with industry-leading companies such as The Novo Nordisk Foundation, Arla, and Elia. Accelerace is also responsible for the management of NOME (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship), a mentor network for life science startups.
Read more here: accelerace.io/invest/