SparkLabs Global Ventures launches new $30 million seed-stage fund to help great startups go global
Former Facebook executive, Net Jacobsson; former Horizons Ventures Board director for Summly, Spotify and Siri, Frank Meehan; and SparkLabs (Korea) co-founder, Bernard Moon, will invest across Asia, Europe, Israel and the US.
SparkLabs Global Ventures is launching a new $30 million seed-stage fund that will invest in early-stage companies looking to rapidly scale their innovations. The fund’s worldwide network of experienced partners identified strong demand from the best startups for on-the-ground regional support for partnerships and expansion opportunities to drive their growth.
The founding partners are Bernard Moon, Net Jacobsson, Frank Meehan, Jimmy Kim, John Lee, and Jay McCarthy. Bernard, Net and Frank will be the primary operating partners.
Net Jacobsson was Facebook’s first international executive and led their initial mobile business development efforts. He has been a highly successful active angel investor and advisor to companies such as Openfeint, Crowdstar, and King.com.
“Throughout my entire career, I’ve always been Mr. International, helping companies entering new markets or taking them global. Now, I finally have an opportunity to really be able to assist entrepreneurs in a more meaningful way both as an investor as well as an entrepreneur together with my talented partners,” said Net Jacobsson.
Frank Meehan was part of Li Ka-Shing’s Horizons Ventures team, representing Horizons on the boards of Spotify, Siri, Summly, Affectiva, Bitcasa, DoubleTwist, Fixmo, TOM.com, and others. Prior to that he was the global director for the mobile operator Three’s handset business, and pioneered early mobile and internet communications integration with the Mobile World Congress award-winning devices, INQ1 and 3 Skypephone.
“Entrepreneurs are no longer satisfied with just being a hit in their home market. They are hungry to bring their amazing products to the world, and are looking for experienced seed investors that can actively support them. For example, Asia-based startups now have the management teams that can globalize, and they are poised for explosive growth. The investors in SparkLabs Global Ventures are very excited about being able to support our entrepreneurs’ expansion plans more effectively than other funds,” explained Frank Meehan, who was named to Wired UK’s Top 100 (2012) and selected in Vanity Fair’s “The Next Establishment” list (2010).
YourStory catches up with Bernard Moon, as he was about to hop on another flight to Bay Area.How did the idea of SparkLabs Global Ventures originate?
SparkLabs Global Ventures was founded on our strong momentum from our SparkLabs accelerator in South Korea, where we have already invested in 16 fantastic startups. Jimmy Kim, John Lee, Jay McCarthy and I were planning to launch an angel fund covering Asia and the U.S. When the opportunity came to partner with Frank and Net on an angel fund, it was a no-brainer. We immediately found our combined network and entrepreneurial experiences for many entrepreneurs an exciting value proposition.
Is SparkLabs Global Ventures among the first few angel funds with a global vision?
The way we are unique is that each of our partners have experience and extensive network in various parts of the world and that’s what makes us unique. Many other funds are either focused on Asia or a combination of Asia and the US. We will invest in Asia, USA, Israel, and Europe.
Do you have any particular focus on key sectors?
We are looking to invest primarily in finance, social, consumer wellness, e-commerce, gaming, education and wearable tech.
Are you planning to invest in Indian startups too?
Yes. We are planning to invest in many startups. We are roughly going to allocate 1/3 of our fund to Asia, and split rest of the investments across Europe, Israel and the US in equal proportions.
You can learn more SparkLabs here.
About SparkLabs Global Ventures
SparkLabs Global Ventures is a new seed-stage investment fund. We believe business is now truly global, but most investors are not. Exceptional entrepreneurs that are building strong, category-defining companies can be found anywhere. SparkLabs Global is a team of highly experienced entrepreneurs and operators based in London, Tel Aviv, Seoul, Singapore and Palo Alto, CA, that will focus on helping our entrepreneurs to develop, grow, network, and scale into other markets throughout the world. For more information, please visit www.sparklabsglobal.com