AXA Venture Partners announced a new €1.5 billion ($1.6 billion) late-stage fund to invest in European and North American tech startups, targeting companies that expect to go public within three to four years.
French insurance company AXA SA, AVP’s biggest source of capital, plans to make a €750 million anchor investment, the fund said in a statement Wednesday. The first closing is expected in the first quarter of 2024, with a final close expected the next year, it said.
The fund comes as the market for initial public offerings in both the US and Europe remains challenging as investors worry about inflation, the war in Ukraine and negotiations in Washington over the debt ceiling. Venture capital funding for startups has plummeted amid a slowdown in the tech industry.
“The strength of AXA’s balance sheet allows us to make such commitment and to benefit from technology tailwinds, which are clearly long-term trends,” AXA Group Chief Investment Officer Jean-Baptiste Tricot said in the statement. “We also believe that the recent correction in valuation in the tech sector will provide opportunities in the years to come.”
The new fund will extend the range of existing AVP funds that cover the venture, growth and funds of funds stages, and could potentially remain invested after any IPOs, the company said. It will keep AVP’s current focus on software, fintech, insurtech, digital health and consumer technologies.
AVP has made about 60 investments since it was launched in 2016. With this new fund, it aims to invest in about a dozen new startups, writing checks of as much as €150 million, with two-thirds of the investments planned in Europe.
Photograph: A French national flag and a flag displaying the AXA SA logo fly outside the insurance company’s headquarters in Paris, France, on Tuesday, March 6, 2018. Photo credit: Christophe Morin/Bloomberg
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