Iris and Capnamic Team Up as ‘Major Euro Early Stage VC Player’

By David Knight |

Leading French digital investment firm Iris Capital has announced a partnership with new ‘multi-corporate’ fund Capnamic Ventures to create a “major European early-stage VC player.” Iris’ early-stage vehicle OP Ventures will work jointly with Capnamic on investment decisions in Germany and portfolio management. In return, the firm says, portfolio companies will benefit from the combined network of the two funds, and in particular from Iris’ presence in North America, Asia and the Middle East.

Capnamic was launched last month after being spun off from the DuMont Schauberg media group, while Iris has invested more than €900 million since being founded in 1986 and is backed by two major corporate investors, Orange and Publicis.

According to a release, the two teams will co-operate closely to make the most of their “combined technical and business knowledge for investment decisions and portfolio management.” This will also result in a broader international development perspective for their respective portfolio companies.

Iris partner Sophie Dingreville has joined the Capnamic investment committee and the new partnership between the two may eventually be extended to later-stage startups.

“Considering that the German VC environment is particularly dynamic in Europe today, it is increasingly important to reinforce our presence in the early stage segment,” said Iris managing partner Antoine Garrigues. “Beyond our passion for VC, we share our strong focus on digital economy, spin-off history and innovative and unique multi-corporate approach with Capnamic. By joining forces, Iris and Capnamic will definitely represent a major European early-stage VC player.”

Joerg Binnruecker, managing partner at Capnamic, said: “With Iris Capital as our partner for early-stage investments, we will reach an unparalleled set-up in continental Europe.”

When Capnamic was launched in February with a fund in the mid-two figure millions, it was announced that it would take over management of the 20 plus companies in the DuMont Ventures portfolio. The company said at the time that it would focus on areas including mobile, e-commerce, gaming, payments, advertising and software as a service (SaaS).