A potted history of the London Co-investment Fund (LCIF)
One day in the spring of 2013 a person called John Spindler sent Maggie a LinkedIn connection request. They had similar ideas, different skill sets and one steep mountain to climb!
The London Co-investment Fund came into existence on the 4th of December 2014. Shortly after, Puneet joined as its fund manager and set into practice THE PLAN. LCIF closed its first investment on 7 January 2015 and has made investments in 147 companies as on 31 March 2019
We have had the privilege to invest £22.6m alongside 14 co-investment partners in 147 London-based startups. The total funding raised by those rounds is £185m. Our partners, selected over three competitive rounds, represent the finest knowledge and expertise in London’s early stage investor scene.
John Spindler’s team at Capital Enterprise were instrumental in enabling 60% of the investments through an introduction, mentoring and support. Our collaboration with John and his team has been an excellent example of cooperation for the benefit of the eco-system as a whole. Many of our co-investment partners will agree the Green Light Programme has set the benchmark for how an investor readiness programme should be run.
LCIF has invested in London based seed stage businesses across the breadth of digital, science and technology sectors. The subsector distribution includes areas of economic and social priorities ranging from automated or streamlined business services to improve productivity using advanced technologies including artificial intelligence, to novel solutions in education, health and environment.
The investment activities of the fund have already helped create 2,000 jobs of the future in London. LCIF was reported by Pitchbook. as the fifth most active VC investor in London between 2010-2017 and as the third most active VC investor in London in 2018
It is difficult to believe that LCIF, in its current form, has come to the end of its investment period. However, we do not think the story will end here. We are working with the GLA to put forward a proposal to the LEAP to recycle the returns of the fund. We will know more in June.
In the meantime, we have initiated exploratory discussions with the GLA with a view to identifying possible sources of funding to allow the investment activity to resume in short to medium term.
The business case for continuing the LCIF is strong. The recently concluded Independent Evaluation Report, highlighted the positive impact that it has had on the eco-system and the real additional economic benefit that it has enabled in London; with a recommendation that this activity is continued. This will not be lost on the LEAP or the GLA as they consider our proposals. We know many of you contributed to the evaluation, and we are thankful.
In the meantime
Despite the uncertainty and challenges ahead, the achievements of the London Co-investment Fund are worthy of celebration. To mark the end of this “initial” phase of investment we are holding a celebration event on the evening of Thursday 2nd May. Invites will follow in the next few days. Please hold the date!
Ahead of the event, we will be publishing a “report” on the achievements of the fund.