How many of you remember what was going on in 2007? The Swiss start-up scene had overcome the hangover after the internet bubble and was slowly picking up speed. It was already clear that Switzerland had particularly great potential in terms of deep-tech start-ups; with Venture Kick, an initiative was launched that wanted to ensure that precisely this potential was better exploited. The goals set by the foundation, which is financed exclusively by private donors, were ambitious but have been exceeded. The start-ups funded by Venture Kick over the last 15 years have created 11,362 jobs and raised CHF 6.7 billion from investors.
The initiative has been greatly expanded over time: it has tripled the funding for start-up projects and additional support programmes, such as Innobooster and the Kick Fund launched this year, have also been added. The expansion reflects the progress made in the Swiss start-up scene. In terms of the Swiss ecosystem, we live in a different world today than 15 years ago.
It would have been unthinkable 15 years ago that we would be able to report on two new VC funds in one week. Zurich-based venture capital firm EquityPitcher has successfully closed its second fund and CHF 45 million is now available for investment in early-growth technology start-ups.
Prediction Capital has launched its first EUR 30 million fund generation under the umbrella of Basel-based family office Infinitas Capital. The early-stage VC fund will invest in digital business models primarily from the fintech and consumertech sectors. Prediction Capital is also the lead investor in Foodetective’s USD 5.5 million seed funding round, which we reported on this week.
In addition, start-ups from the life sciences sector in particular secured investments this week. Aspivix and Cradle each received about CHF 5 million, and Novigenix completed the first part of its Series B round.
The maturity of the ecosystem is also reflected in the increasing number of scale-ups with global sales success. A good example is Wecheer: the Vaud-based start-up’s customers include top brands such as Mars Wrigley, Nestlé, Pernod Ricard, Coke HBC and Anheuser-Busch.
Next week you can meet me at DayOne DEMO DAY and the Swiss Innovation Forum in Basel. I would also like to mention the kick-off event for the >>venture>> competition at EPFL, the BioAlps Networking Day in Neuchâtel and the Innosuisse female founders event in Olten. The Tech4Eva Conference on femtech will take place in Lausanne on Monday, 28 November.
Finally, a message from us. The next Swiss Startup Radar will be published on 8 December, with a focus on environmental start-ups. My co-author Michael Rockinger from the University of Lausanne and I analysed data on 20,000 sustainable start-ups to compare the performance of the Swiss ecosystem with 19 other countries. A print copy of the magazine can be pre-ordered now and will be sent out in December.
Have a good weekend.
Editor in Chief Startupticker.ch