Hiro Capital has launched a €100 million venture capital fund for video games, esports and related technology across the UK and the EU.
The fund, whose founders include industry stalwart Ian Livingstone CBE, will invest in companies in the post-seed stage, at Series A and B. Essentially, this means that Hiro Capital will invest in established startups seeking to expand, coming in to provide the next level of support after angel investors have topped out. An area that has long been problematic for the games industry, as the city has often had trouble grasping the potential benefits (and possible risks) of the industry.
Other founders include managing partner Luke Alvarez, also Inspired Entertainment co-founder, and partner Cherry Freeman, co-founder of LoveCrafts.
The founders believe this will fill a funding gap that prevents many such startups from expanding. Speaking to Gamesindustry.biz, Hiro Capital co-founder Luke Alarez said “We feel strongly that there’s been this capital gap in our set of industries,” says Alvarez. “There’s a clear lack of post-seed capital, particularly in Europe. There are lots of entrepreneurs who have made good money and will invest as angels, but very little capital available once a business needs investment of between €1 million and €15 million.”
“The scaling opportunities combined with the capital efficiency in the games and sports technology sectors make it a uniquely exciting arena,” said Freema. “You can start from nothing and end up on a billion handsets in a year. If you’ve got an idea, you can talk to the entire planet. There are very few sectors which are totally global, totally consumer facing and instantly scalable and our new fund will be looking to tap into this potential to discover the next-generation of trailblazers. The Hiro team have founded games, sports and tech startups worth over $5bn between us. We support our entrepreneurs on their heroic journeys from startups to global stars.”
Hiro Capital will back companies behind video games and esports, as well as sector-specific applications of cloud, mobile, streaming, big data, AI, wearables, AR and VR technologies.