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London-based Darktrace-backer Balderton Capital reveals $600m fund to invest in early stage tech startups

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Balderton has backed companies including Depop  (Depop)
Balderton has backed companies including Depop (Depop)

London-based tech VC firm Balderton Capital - behind giants from Darktrace to Depop and Revolut - has raised a new $600 million (£505 million) fund to invest in early-stage European tech startups.

The fund's 25-person investment team plans to plough the cash into up to 30 new companies, with initial cheques set to range between $1 million and $20 million.

So far this year Balderton, which was founded in 2000, has already backed 20 young startups spanning sectors from femtech to gaming.

Partner Suranga Chandratillake said that "while our job may not have changed, Europe has - we are excited for the thriving ecosystem we find around us with more talent, more capital and more ambition than at any time in our history".

Over $20 billion has already been invested into UK startups this year, according to Pitchbook data.

British startups are currently seeing record-high valuations, and have the chance to be selective about their investors as money flows into the sector.

Balderton, which launched its last early-stage venture fund in November 2019, already unveiled a $680 million later-stage "growth" fund in June. Other established venture firms also recently revealed large funds targeting early stage European startups or scale-ups - startups already taking in significant revenues.

Index Ventures raised a $3 billion pot in July, and last month Eight Roads, an early investor in Alibaba and backer of UK companies Cazoo and Made.com, revealed a $450 million fund.

Eight Roads told the Standard around a third of the fund's cheques are likely to land with later stage UK-based start-up founders.

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