VC firm Accel raises $650 mln to invest in AI, cybersecurity startups | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #ransomware

STOCKHOLM, May 14 (Reuters) – Venture capital firm Accel
said on Tuesday it has raised a $650 million fund to invest in
early-stage companies in Europe and Israel with a focus on
artificial intelligence and cybersecurity.

The new fund will be Accel’s eighth since opening its London
office in 2000. Accel has so far backed more than 200 companies
across 20 countries in the region and still has investments in
more than 100 companies.

“It takes about three years to invest the fund and then the
life of a fund is typically around 12 years,” Harry Nelis, a
partner at Accel, told Reuters, adding that Accel will invest in
25 to 30 new companies.

Accel, known for early investments in companies such as Meta
and Dropbox, had also invested in major
European companies such as Deliveroo, Spotify
and Supercell.

The European and Israeli VC market has been growing fast,
with investments of $66 billion in 2023 compared to $150 billion
in the United States, according to data from Dealroom. In
comparison, the investments amounted to just $1.1 billion in
2003 versus $17 billion in the U.S.

“AI is going to be a big platform shift that will probably
run for the next 10 years and we expect to place a good number
of bets in AI companies,” Nelis said.

While AI companies of interest can emerge anywhere in
Europe, London and Paris have become hubs for AI development, he
said. “London because of DeepMind and Paris because of Facebook
AI Research (FAIR).”

London-based DeepMind is an AI research laboratory which is
now owned by Alphabet. Meta opened FAIR in Paris in
2015 and it has become its hub for AI advancements.
(Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Stockholm;
Editing by Alison Williams)


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