Lunar Ventures, is a a new, technically-oriented VC fund aimed at early-stage DeepTech startups, that is now announcing the closing of its €40M first fund.
Lunar was founded in Berlin in 2019 by Dr Elad Verbin, a computer science researcher; Mick Halsband, a CTO and software architect; and Luis Shemtov, a former entrepreneur.
The launch is timely: DeepTech investments in Europe have almost tripled in the last five years, nearing €10B in 2020. The is roughly a quarter of the total VC investments in the continent.
Verbin said Lunar Ventures, said, “Technical startup founders in Europe have a big problem. They struggle to find investors who actually understand what they’re building. Most VCs in Europe don’t come from a technical or scientific background, and they struggle to evaluate the underlying technology, failing to invest in promising science-based moonshots.” Personally, I this is also my experience.
Verbin continued: “We are a team of scientists and engineers and we have built Lunar Ventures to solve this problem. We find the best startups building the future, our team conducts rigorous technical due diligence to evaluate their true potential, and then we lead their funding rounds.”
The fund will invest up to €1M into early-stage DeepTech startups that are software-focused, aiming at the thesis frontier computer science, machine learning, cryptography, new cloud infrastructures and next-generation databases.
So far it’s invested in Zama is a Paris-based startup building end-to-end encryption for machine learning models; Berlin-based Deepset enabling computers to understand plain language; and Molecule, a drug discovery platform using the Ethereum blockchain.
Lunar is backed by LPS such as Isomer Capital, Multiple Capital, Aldea Ventures, Compagnia di San Paolo and the European Investment Fund.