European Startups Raise €1.2bn During March 2024 with Fintech Leading the Pack

European Startups Raise €1.2bn During March 2024 with Fintech Leading the Pack

The surge in investment in European fintech companies during March underscores the sector's resilience and attractiveness to early-stage investors. With €1.2bn injected into 336 pre-seed, seed, and Series A rounds, fintech firms are leading the fundraising charge, buoyed by their growing appeal among consumers across Europe.

While the total funding at these stages saw a 14% decline compared to March 2023, when €1.4bn was invested in 621 startups, it's crucial to note that this year's numbers are expected to rise further due to reporting delays. Despite this, early-stage British startups saw a notable increase in funding, securing €396m in March, up from €374m in February, while French startups also experienced a boost, attracting €209m compared to €157m in the previous month. However, German startups saw a slight dip, raising €109m, down from February's €113m.

In the healthtech sector, March proved to be a fruitful month for biotech startups. Paris-based Cure51 secured €15m led by Sofinnova Partners, focusing on cancer therapies by analyzing the biological mechanisms of cancer survivors. Edinburgh-based Wobble Genomics raised £8.5m for its RNA and DNA sequencing-based gene biomarker therapies. UK-based Senisca, a longevity tech startup, received £3.7m in equity and £1.1m in debt, while Swedish startup Sand Clinic, a luxurious longevity clinic, raised €4m.

In enterprise software, Paris-based Adaptive ML raised €18.3m, Stockholm-based Dema secured €7m, and London-based Haiper AI received €13.8m for its community-led AI model. Another London-based startup, Fluent, raised $7.5m for its AI-powered data analytics platform.

March also saw a surge in crypto startups, with London-based Ubit raising a $20m Series A for its crypto derivatives exchange. In the climate tech sector, Essen-based Greenlyte Carbon Technologies secured a €10.5m pre-Series A round, Phelas, a Germany-based energy storage startup, raised €4.1m, and Amsterdam-based Orbio Earth received a €4m investment for its methane emissions monitoring technology.

Overall, the diverse range of startups and technologies securing funding in March reflects the vibrancy and innovation present in Europe's startup ecosystem, with fintech and healthtech standing out as particularly promising sectors for investors.

Let us have a deeper look at Startups across Europe.

Paris based Cure51 raises €15 million in a seed funding

Cure51, a techbio company dedicated to unraveling the biological mechanisms behind exceptional cancer survivors, has successfully raised €15 million in a seed funding round led by Sofinnova Partners, with additional investment from Hitachi Ventures GmbH, Life Extension Ventures, Xavier Niel, and Olivier Pomel of Datadog. This funding will support Cure51 in building a unique cohort to explore how certain cancer patients survive for extended periods despite aggressive forms of the disease. The company aims to unlock these mechanisms to enable every patient to become an exceptional survivor, providing new insights for precision medicine and drug target discovery.

The company's approach, focusing on outliers who defy statistical odds in surviving aggressive cancers, is pioneering. Cure51's strong clinical network and advanced analytical techniques have garnered support from investors like Sofinnova Partners and Hitachi Ventures GmbH. Cure51 was founded in March 2022 and has partnered with leading oncology centers worldwide to pioneer the creation of a global clinical and molecular database of cancer survivors, aiming to rewrite the narrative of cancer. By studying these outliers, Cure51 aims to uncover novel biology and discover transformative medicines, utilizing a unique data collection system and discovery platform.

Nicolas Wolikow, Co-founder, and CEO of Cure51, expressed gratitude for the funding, highlighting its importance in their mission to cure cancer. Simon Istolainen, Co-founder and Chief Strategy and Scientific Network Officer, emphasized the potential of Cure51's approach in understanding and targeting the biological mechanisms of exceptional survival. Cure51's efforts hold promise for developing first-in-class treatments and saving countless lives.

Senisca Raises £3.7M during March

Senisca, a biotechnology company based in Exeter, UK, has secured an additional £3.7 million in funding, bringing its total funding to £7.1 million. The funding round saw participation from investors such as Emerging Longevity Ventures, QantX, the R42 Group, Trend Investment Group, Apex Ventures, and Lifespan Vision Ventures.

The company plans to utilize the funds to support the further development and preclinical testing of its senotherapeutic programs. These programs aim to address the underlying causes of age-related diseases by regulating RNA splicing, which can reprogram cells and potentially modify disease progression by reducing senescence.

Senisca, led by CEO Dr. Sarah Cole, is a spinout from the University of Exeter. It has developed proprietary technology that leverages RNA biology to reprogram senescent cells, which are associated with aging and age-related diseases. The company's approach targets RNA splicing dysregulation, a key component of cellular senescence, and has applications in various pharmacological and skin health indications. Senisca's senotherapeutics have shown promise in positively impacting disease markers in patient-derived models.

Senisca's focus is on rapidly advancing its research and development efforts, with an emphasis on generating data for Investigational New Drug (IND) applications. The company's innovative approach to targeting cellular senescence holds potential for developing effective treatments for age-related diseases.

Adaptive ML raises €18.3 million for building GenAI experiences

Adaptive ML, a startup focused on enhancing generative AI models based on user interactions, has successfully secured over €18.3 million in a seed funding round led by Index Ventures. Other participants in the funding round included ICONIQ Capital, Motier Ventures, Databricks Ventures, IRIS, HuggingFund by Factorial, and several prominent angel investors.

The company's mission is to empower enterprises worldwide to leverage constantly improving generative models, enabling them to deliver more intuitive experiences that positively impact key business metrics. Adaptive ML has already released the initial version of its enterprise platform and plans to utilize the funding to further its research, enhance product development, and expand its team in Paris and New York.

Julien Launay, CEO of Adaptive ML, emphasized the company's commitment to enhancing user experiences and business outcomes through more intuitive genAI applications. He highlighted their vision of continuously learning models that can personalize experiences for each user.

There is a significant demand among enterprises to utilize large language models (LLMs); however, there exists a substantial gap between adopting a generic model and customizing it for specific production use cases. Adaptive aims to bridge this gap by making highly technical and specialized techniques more accessible to enterprises. Their platform abstracts the complexities of fine-tuning and reinforcement learning, thereby reducing time-to-release for LLM-based products. This innovative approach to engineering, data, and deployment sets Adaptive apart in the market.

Bryan Offutt, Partner at Index Ventures, expressed excitement about partnering with Adaptive ML to bring alignment to enterprises using large language models. He emphasized that while pre-training teaches a model how to think, alignment teaches it how to communicate effectively, enabling businesses to build models tailored to their specific needs.

Greenlyte Carbon Technologies raised €10.5m pre-Series A funding during March

Greenlyte Carbon Technologies has successfully completed a €10.5 million pre-Series A funding round, bringing its total funding to over €20 million. The round was led by Earlybird Venture Capital, Green Generation Fund, Carbon Removal Partners, Board member Dr. Udo Jung, and Partech, highlighting the strong investor confidence in the German startup.

The funding round comes on the heels of significant commercial success for Greenlyte, including key partnerships and high-value offtake agreements. The company has also secured two grants from the European Fund for Regional Developments, further solidifying its position in the market.

Founded in 2022 by Florian Hildebrand, Dr. Niklas Friederichsen, and Dr. Peter Behr, Greenlyte specializes in direct air capture technology, which efficiently removes CO2 from the atmosphere using a liquid-sorbent solution. This process produces hydrogen as a byproduct and can be seamlessly integrated with renewable energy sources, offering a sustainable solution to carbon removal.

With the new funding, Greenlyte plans to expand its team from 30 to 50 members, enabling the company to accelerate its technology development and deployment. The funding will also support the company's go-to-market strategy, driving down costs and accelerating its scaling efforts.

Dr. Hendrik Brandis, Co-Founder and Partner at Earlybird, commended Greenlyte's rapid progress and market trust, expressing confidence in the company's DAC technology. Janna Ensthaler, Co-Founder and Partner at Green Generation Fund, praised Greenlyte's team and its groundbreaking technology, highlighting their scientific expertise and operational excellence.

Germany-based energy storage startup Phelas raised €4.1m during March 2024

Phelas, a company established in 2020, is pioneering the development of Aurora, an innovative energy storage system. Aurora utilizes a proprietary air liquefaction and thermal management process, offering a modular and scalable solution for sustainable and cost-effective energy storage.

The company has already made strides in energy storage deployment through Catalyst, its strategic energy asset planning solution. Catalyst assists in assessing project risk and profitability, providing valuable insights for customers.

CEO Justin Scholz emphasizes Phelas' core vision of making global renewable energy adoption a seamless transition. The company aims to enable customers to build the renewable energy system of the future, where renewables paired with storage become the most economical, sustainable, and reliable power source globally.

E44 Ventures, headquartered in Tel Aviv, focuses on investing in companies addressing critical climate challenges. Their investment in Phelas reflects a strong belief in the potential of long-term energy storage. Sharon Shacham, Co-founder and Managing Partner at E44 Ventures, expresses excitement about partnering with Phelas, highlighting the company's dedication to developing innovative, scalable, and sustainable energy storage solutions. The collaboration aligns with E44 Ventures' mission to invest in transformative technologies that combat climate change, furthering their commitment to reducing CO2 emissions.

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