News Briefs: Venture fund gets family backing; Greece and family offices, etc…

German venture firm secures funding with family enterprise backers

A Berlin venture firm backed by family enterprises and high profile entrepreneurs has secured €50 million to invest in the next generation of European B2B startups, according to reports. 

The long term vision for La Famiglia, according to its founders, is to encourage collaboration between its next-gen startups and their established multi-generational backers in order to stimulate business innovation across the sectors.

Co-founded in 2016 by German aristocrat Jeannette zu Fürstenberg, La Famiglia backers include the Qatari royal family, who acquired Italian fashion label Valentino through their private investment company, Mayhoola in 2012. Genevan family-run private bank and providers of family office services, Pictet, are also part of its network, as are the family behind the Austrian luxury retail brand, Swarovski.

The firm also counts internationally successful homegrown family businesses as investors including Dr Oetker, a fourth-generation food and baking business based in Bielefeld, and Bad Waldsee based motorhome company, Hymer.

The Mittal family, a third-generation Indian steel dynasty, are one of the firm’s biggest family funders. 

Individual investors backing the venture firm include Skype co-founder, Niklas Zennström who is also the CEO of Atomico, a venture capital firm that has invested in ‘buy now, pay later’ service, Klarna. 

Alexander Chesterman, the serial entrepreneur behind property listings site, Zoopla and DVD and streaming video service business, LoveFilm is also a backer.

This latest round brings the total funding raised by La Famiglia to more than €85 million.

Greece invites the world’s family offices to stay

Greece wants family offices to re-locate to its shores. 

Currently, the Greek legal system doesn’t make provision for family offices, but the government is trying to change this by offering new incentives for them to move, according to government officials.

One idea discussed to improve access is to use existing shipping laws as a template to create a similar legal framework for family offices.

The government is also keen to emphasise the general economic benefit family offices will bring to Greece beyond tax income, including new business for advisory groups such as law firms. 

Digital wealth manager bags South-African family office executive

A UK wealth manager has hired a fund research professional from a South-African single-family office.

Wealthify, a digital investment service based in Wales, has hired Kyle Cox, previously head of research at Marr Holdings, a family office with a focus on real estate and private equity, according to its website, based in Cape Town.

Launched in 2016, Wealthify is a fintech company that, according to Crunchbase, provides customers with “transparent” and “affordable” digital investment services. In his new role, Cox will focus on select funds with an ethical and sustainable focus.

The Carlyle Group and a family office cross paths in Indian pharmaceuticals

The family office of pharma entrepreneur, Arun Kumar, has agreed to buy a stake in Strides Pharma Science, an R&D led pharmaceutical company based in Bangalore, India, according to reports in the Indian press. 

SeQuent Scientific, a firm that describes itself as the largest animal healthcare company in India, is selling 3.31 million shares in Strides Pharma Science to Kumar, who is the co-founder of SeQuent Scientific and a promoter of Strides Pharma Science Ltd as well as another pharmaceuticals company, Solara Active Pharma Sciences Ltd.

According to reports, the proceeds generated from the sale of shares will be used to extend its existing interests in Turkey.

The news comes three months after Washington DC-based private equity firm, The Carlyle Group, co-founded by David Rubenstein decided to acquire a majority stake in SeQuent Scientific. 


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