Lunar Ventures, a new, tech-oriented VC fund aimed at early-stage deeptech startups, is now announcing the closure of its €40M first fund.
Lunar was founded in Berlin in 2019 by Dr. Elad Verbin, a computer science researcher; Mick Hulseband, a CTO and software architect; and Luis Shematov, a former entrepreneur.
The launch is timely: Deeptech investment in Europe has nearly tripled over the past five years, to close to €10B in 2020. This accounts for about a quarter of the total VC investment in the continent.
Verbin told Lunar Ventures, “Technology startup founders in Europe have a big problem. They struggle to find investors who really understand what they are building. Most VCs in Europe are technical or scientific. backgrounds, and they struggle to evaluate the underlying technology, failing to invest in promising science-based moonshots. Personally, I too, this is my experience.
Verbin continued: “We are a team of scientists and engineers and we created Lunar Ventures to solve this problem. We find the best startups building the future, our team to evaluate their true potential. rigorous technical precautions, and then we lead their funding round.”
The fund will invest up to €1M in early-stage deeptech startups that are software-focused, aiming to thesis frontiers computer science, machine learning, cryptography, new cloud infrastructure and next-generation databases.
So far it has invested in Zama which is a Paris-based startup building end-to-end encryption for machine learning models; Berlin-based Deepset enables computers to understand simple 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 European Investment Fund.