Splitting ops between Helsinki and London, former Seedcamp investment team member and head of HTC’s $100 million Vive X fund Dave Haynes and the Nordic XR Startups accelerator’s Petri Rajahalme have taken the wraps off their new specialist VC fund FOV, and are coming out charging with a respectable first close of €16.5 million of a targeted €25 million.
FOV will be targeting approximately 25 European startups working in, on, over, and around the Metaverse with pre-seed and seed-stage investments slated to range from €250,000 to €500,000. More specifically, according to Haynes and Rajahalme, they’re particularly interested in the Metaverse-related areas of identity, avatars, commerce, entertainment and social, the future of work, and creator tools and infrastructure.
Understand it or not, want it or not, need it or not, the Metaverse is coming. Meta is in, Microsoft, Epic, and Nvidia are setting the sails and heading out into the oceans research, development, and execute, and Bloomberg predicts, “The global Metaverse revenue opportunity could approach $800 billion in 2024 vs. about $500 billion in 2020.”
While FOV might not quite have the firepower that video gaming and metaverse technologies-focused Hiro Captial has, that’s exactly the point. By launching a smaller fund with a razor-sharp focus on an emerging industry, FOV aims to pan for gold within Europe, spotlighting the potential billion-dollar companies of tomorrow that might have otherwise gone overlooked with backing and support at the earliest of stages.
“We believe the Metaverse represents a trillion-dollar opportunity over the next decade, fundamentally changing the way we play, socialize and shop, but also the way we work and collaborate. We’ll also need new tools for creators to build this new reality. As with previous evolutions on the Internet, we believe the Metaverse will unleash a new generation of billion-dollar companies. Our mission is to identify, fund, and support those companies,” explains Haynes.
Not only is FOV tapping into the growing trend of smaller, more finely focused VC firms, but they’re also joining the crowdsourcing approach when it comes to deal flow. Names of recent where this approach has been highlighted includ Backed VC and Flashpoint, with FOV’s variant titled an ‘Edge Network’. Essentially, the duo has assembled a global network (presumably from industry contacts that share a mutual goal) that is on tap to support portfolio companies in the future but also help scout for new ones.
If this process is anything like the others, scouts will then have first dibs on investment opportunities of their own, with due diligence already having been done.