La Famiglia, a female-led venture firm, has raised 50 million euros for its new fund that backs B2B companies. This amount brings the total tally raised by the fund to more than 85 million euros.
Berlin, 12th August, 2020: La Famiglia – the female-led VC backed by some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs, family businesses and industry leaders – has announced a €50 million fund to uncover the next-generation of B2B giants.
This brings the total raised by the fund since 2017 to more than €85 million.
La Famiglia’s USP lies in its unmatched strength of uniting a multi-generational and multi-sectoral base of entrepreneurs that support each other through shared learnings and exclusive insights, thereby circumventing common entrepreneurial pitfalls on their way to product-market fit.
Its LP base includes established industry giants such as the Mittal, Pictet, Oetker, Hymer and Swarovski families, the industry leaders Voith and Franke, as well as the owning families behind conglomerates such as Hapag Lloyd, Solvay, Adidas, and Valentino, alongside new economy leaders Niklas Zennström (Skype, Atomico), Zoopla’s Alex Chesterman and Personio’s Hanno Renner.
Led by Dr. Jeannette zu Fürstenberg alongside partner Judith Dada, the pair is on a mission to drive the integration of technology into every sector of the economy by building a home for entrepreneurs and leaders that drive the next wave of industry-transforming companies. Their vision for La Famiglia is to foster cooperation between young digital disruptors and leading companies by serving as a trusted access platform and advisor for existing entrepreneurs and business leaders to create mutually beneficial relationships.
“Having worked closely with La Famiglia for three years, we find them on the cutting edge when it comes to discovering, investing and supporting the next generation of tech companies,” said Niklas Zennström, founder of Skype and Atomico. “What makes them stand out is their long-term view and ability to understand tech founders’ vision.”
“We have been an investor in La Famiglia since the first fund, convinced by the concept of connecting old economy families and start-ups as well as the formidable team and culture of La Famiglia”, the Franke Group commented.
La Famiglia’s value add is also echoed by founders who have worked with them. “I think Jeannette and Judith have established a unique value proposition by combining an exceptional network within the old and new economy, with a deep understanding of new trends and technologies. Besides, working with them has always been a lot of fun due to their amazing personalities” says Hanno Renner, Co-Founder and CEO of Personio.
La Famiglia closed its first €35 million fund in 2017 and has since invested in 37 fast-growth firms across Europe and the US.
As part of its second fund, La Famiglia is looking to make initial investments of up to €1.5 million in startups that are addressing a significant need in an industry through an innovative technology and a scalable business model.
The fund has a vertical focus on logistics and supply chain, the industrial space as well as insurance. Furthermore, they identified early on the transformative role of sustainability and the future of work for large industries and society as a whole. A fact that gives the portfolio acceleration in COVID times.
“Within B2B-models there is a wealth of untapped potential – there is no reason for why a B2B business in Europe shouldn’t scale as fast as in other markets, with client bases often being international by definition. Yet founders starting in B2B face the challenge of long feedback cycles and opaque industry structures. La Famiglia provides transparency and access as quickly as possible – a partner that can help you cut unnecessary corners” said Jeannette zu Fürstenberg.
These startups will not only have the potential to benefit from new business, but will help with the digital transformation of legacy firms and processes, to help revolutionise industries that are often stuck in decades-old, cumbersome processes and infrastructure. Approximately half of the fund will be used for these initial investments, with a reserve being used as follow-on funding in later rounds.
Building on success
In the first fund, La Famiglia made investments in 31 seed-stage startups set to significantly disrupt global B2B industries including:
Berlin-based Forto, the digital freight forwarding platform
San Francisco-based Deel, a payment platform for contractors
Austin-based Fox Robotics, building intelligent automated forklifts
Munich-based Arculus, the modular production platform
Paris-based SpaceFill, a B2B marketplace for warehouse space;
London-based Graphy, a digital collaboration platform
23 of these investments have already raised subsequent capital from investors such as A16Z and Atomico, while four companies have exited.
“With every investment we make, we ask ourselves whether it represents a vitamin or a pain killer for the industry. To evaluate this, we regularly exchange with various industry experts – so it’s not unusual that a budding relationship between the ventures we evaluate and our partners already forms during due diligence.” said Judith Dada.
“We are proud to have funded incredibly ambitious founders in Fund I and feel privileged to have been part of their successful journey. We’re excited to build upon this foundation with fund II; capitalising on B2B’s great opportunities, which are often still largely untouched by digital disruption,” said Jeannette zu Fürstenberg.
The second fund has already backed a range of promising companies, including Berlin-based Spread.ai, building a product intelligence platform, Munich-based Luminovo, building the operating system for the electronics industry, and London-based ChaosIQ, building a resilience infrastructure platform.
About La Famiglia
La Famiglia was founded as a venture capital fund in 2016 and is run by its founding partner Jeannette zu Fürstenberg alongside partner Judith Dada.
The fund is at the forefront of a new wave of cutting-edge B2B VCs. La Famiglia’s unique DNA is shaped first and foremost by its commitment to being more than a regular venture fund: serving as a trusted access platform and advisor for entrepreneurs and business leaders to create mutually beneficial relationships. The pair’s vision for La Famiglia is to leverage its extensive network to put a modern twist on the enterprise world, fostering cooperation between digital disruptors and leading companies – and their courage to do things differently.
The fund’s distinctive identity also comes from its exclusively female leadership, whose heterogeneous backgrounds bring a fresh take to both VC and tech circles. Born in a German industrial family, Jeannette holds a PHD in Philosophy and Entrepreneurship from Freie Universität Berlin. She previously worked for a major European investment fund and has been active in the startup ecosystem as a co-founder, investor and advisor since 2013.
“Now being a mother of four young children, we have fostered a team culture of inclusivity also when it comes to mastering the challenge of combining a highly dynamic work environment with the joys of family life. This includes a flexibility that probably isn’t yet achievable in the rigid corset of many corporate structures. Incidentally, many founders start companies at a stage when they also start families of their own and are also seeking advice on how to excel in both” stated Jeannette zu Fürstenberg.
Judith, a German with Nigerian roots, formerly of Facebook where she managed the Amazon Europe account and launched the Facebook VC initiative, has a strong focus on product and machine learning, as well as promoting the strength of Europe’s tech talent.
‘In a world where markets are increasingly competitive, the plurality of cultures, experiences and genders of our team has been a breath of fresh air for founders looking for VCs they can connect with and feel represented by’, says the duo. ‘A majority of the founding teams we have backed in the last 6 months have told us that diversity was a key consideration when deciding who to partner with when they had many term sheets to choose from. This is also true of applicants to our open positions: our pipeline of candidates has been diverse by default. We strongly believe that this is due to a positive reinforcement loop: the more diverse your leadership and team, the more you can attract diverse top talent that identifies with your fund and values. We will continue to be at the vanguard on that front, too.’