EQT Ventures, the Stockholm-headquartered venture capital firm that invests in Europe and the U.S ., is losing founding collaborator Hjalmar Winbladh, TechCrunch has learned.
Rumours that he was leaving the” multistage, sector-agnostic” VC fund that he cured propel in 2016, begin circulating within the European startup ecosystem last week, with numerous sources telling TechCrunch that Winbladh has his center set on starting something new.
A serial inventor, in the real sense, Winbladh is a seven-time founder, having previously built and organized world-wide technology business such as Wrapp, Rebtel and Sendit. Described as the world’s firstly portable internet companionship, Sendit was acquired by Microsoft in 1999.
He attached EQT a decade ago to help establish its gues arm, when Europe just had a venture capital ecosystem and was dwarfed by the U.S. in terms of available uppercase. In late 2019, EQT Ventures heightened its second fund, with commitments totaling EUR6 60 million, realise it one of the largest VC stores in Europe.
One of the firm’s investments, Small Giant Games, was acquired by Zynga in 2018 in a transaction valued at $ 700 million. Other portfolio companies include 3D Hubs, Varjo, Natural Cycles, Permutive, Codacy, Peakon and Tinyclues.
Confirming Winbladh’s departure, EQT’s Head of Communications, Nina Nornholm, rendered the following statement 😛 TAGEND
Hjalmar has been with EQT for almost 10 years and has played an instrumental role on our digital change journey. Over the last five years, he has also built and conducted the Ventures team into a very successful business and with a strong portfolio and dedicated team. He is now longing to get back to his entrepreneurial beginnings and has decided to leave his character within EQT Ventures. He remains on the boards of EQT Ventures’ portfolio companionships Banking Circle, Wolt and Peltarion so we are not separating routes entirely.
In a brief call with Winbladh — ending his trip , no less — he said he was roused to take some time to figure out what’s next, although he stressed that it was too early to go into any detail and that he was leaving EQT Ventures in very good hands.
Painting expansive cover strokes, Winbladh told me he wants to continue rendering back to the European ecosystem but that the challenges it faces today are very different to 10 years ago. With the tech terrain more competitive than ever, he wants to create a way for seasoned financiers and investors like himself to better support the next generation of founders, inkling at something earlier stage than EQT Ventures’ Series A, B and C focus. However, he said he wasn’t currently promoting a money of his own.
As always, watch this space.
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