Finland's angel funding is getting beefed up.
Ten individuals, including Supercell founders, key employees, and others that have put together a €15 million fund managed by Lifeline Ventures' Timo Ahopelto and Petteri Koponen. The fund plans to put together angel rounds close to €500,000, which is big early money coming from a single investor compared to what we're used to seeing up north. Last October Supercell sold a 51% stake in the company to GungHo and Softbank for $1.5 billion.
"It's a little counter intuitive," says Ahopelto. "All the funds want to grow bigger - first you have your €10 million, €30 million, then €100 million. Our first fund was around €30 million we established three years ago. So now we're doing a €15 million fund, which is half of that."
The reasoning Ahopelto gives is that they really want to "get" the angel stage and the super early stage where they say they do their best. With a smaller fund and larger investments, they have the luxury of picking out the best teams while having enough hands-on time to be the entrepreneur's sparring partner.
Ahopelto points to the recent stats released by FIBAN that state that the average angel investment in Finland is around €50,000. "Right now in the angel fund we can make angel investments up to half a million. That way we can make sure really the best teams coming out of Finland can be competitive to Silicon Valley, where the hottest companies can raise €500,000 angel investments from an single investor."
In comparison, Supercell (whose CEO Ilkka Paananen is an advisor at Lifeline) had trouble raising it's €750,000 seed round from Finland, and had to shop around outside of the country. But that €500,000 angel round is the investment size they're somewhat shooting for.
Additionally the fund really isn't a fund in the traditional sense. Rather than investing over a fixed timeline, Ahopelto says this €15 million could be looked at as more of new investment firm that invests when it wants to. "That doesn't mean it can't grow, but this is the first capital that we've started with," says Ahopelto.
original comic book character angel holding a staff image by shutterstock