P2P Currency Exchange TransferWise Raises $6M Led By Peter Thiel's Valar Ventures, With Participation From SV Angel, Others
Here's some encouraging news for the European startup scene, and London in particular. TransferWise, the online currency exchange that uses the crowd to undercut traditional money transfer services, has announced that it's closed a $6 million series A round led by Peter Thiel's Valar Ventures -- the first investment in Europe by the PayPal co-founder and early Facebook investor's international fund.
German Finance Minister Puts Focus on Unemployment
Speaking at an investment conference in London, Wolfgang Schäuble cited joblessness among young people as Europe’s biggest problem.
WPP CEO Sorrell: Google Will Overtake News Corp As Our Largest Media Investment This Year Or Next
Martin Sorrell, the CEO of WPP, today laid out a stark picture of how significant a role digital is playing for the advertising giant. Speaking at the FT Digital Media Conference in London today, he said that digital now accounts for 34% of WPP’s media investment, amounting to some $72 billion, rising “from zero to over one-third in about ten years, the age of Google,” he said. Google, he said, is the second-largest recipient of that digital spend at the moment, at around $2 billion for the quarter, but that it will soon overtake the single biggest beneficiary at the moment, News Corp. Sorrell described Google as “a media owner masquerading as a tech company.” Sorrell referred to these numbers as a preview of WPP’s quarterly results, which are out tomorrow. He added that at the moment AOL and Yahoo are each getting around $400 million to $500 million in ad spend via WPP. Facebook, despite its size and current popularity, is only around $270 million. Twitter, he added, is “much ...
Mayor Pumps $33M Into London Startups With New MMC London Fund, TechCity To Benefit
London is about to get a shot in the arm as a hub for UK and European technology startups that choose to HQ themselves there. For a long time the funding problem for startups here was at the Seed stage. That pain has been greatly eased in the last few years with multiple seed and early stage funding sources appearing such as Passion Capital, EC1 Capital, Playfair Capital and Hoxton Ventures for example. Now the problem is at "follow-on" and Series A of around £1-5m. Well, this issue just got easier with the announcement today that London-based fund manager and investor MMC Ventures has won a competitive tender from the Mor of London to launch the brand new MMC London Fund. The new £11m ($16.8m) fund is specifically focused on investment in London-based businesses and is a 'matching fund' alongside other VCs and Angels, so that pot will swell to £22m ($33.6m).
Accel Closes $475M Fund To Invest Mainly In Europe And Israel, Focusing On The Series A “Sweet Spot”
Accel Partners has just this morning announced another hefty fund of $475 million. It's the company's fourth fund for Accel London and will be used for investments across a wide range of technologies -- consumer Internet, big data, cloud, SaaS and mobile among them -- and primarily companies in Europe and Israel, at all stages of investment but focusing mainly on its "sweet spot" of Series A. The news comes on the heels of reports in February that Accel was preparing to close a fund of $450 million.