It's been a hot, yet immeasurably valuable month of July for us all, undoubtedly due to the relaxing effect of the summer sun which recharges our internal batteries after a long winter. However, for venture capital firm ACTIVE Venture Partners, last month has been more than just recharging batteries. In fact, its been all about breaching corporate milestones and expanding as a company: to culminate their most active month in their history as a VC firm, ACTIVE has appointed two new members to its team, Sebastian Blum and Georg Stockinger.
The announcement comes after a month of heavy investing, during which Active Venture Partners has led funding rounds for Spanish startups Traity ($4.7 million) and Percentil ($1 million) as well as Swedish app for anglers, Fishbrain ($2.4 million).
Now it seems the time has come for ACTIVE to expand its workforce capacity, which has doubled in three years from five to ten team members. With new blood coming in to support the existing company structure, the company shows no sings of slowing down one bit.
So who are the two new guys worthy of a tactical coffee offer?
Blum, a silicon valley schooled entrepreneur, has held positions that makes up a convincing CV for the man who’ll be focusing his skills in expanding ACTIVE’s influence in Berlin and other German speaking startup hubs. Most notably, Blum held senior positions at Deutsche Telekom’s VC arm, T-Venture, in which he most recently worked as Managing Director of its San Francisco office.
Blum came to ACTIVE from his previous position in California-based app developer Cooliris, where he was the VP of Business Development.
“There had to be a compelling reason for me to return from the US to Europe, and I found it in ACTIVE,” said Sebastian Blum. “This is such an exciting opportunity; to work with a phenomenal and passionate team of entrepreneurially-minded professionals dedicated to helping other entrepreneurs succeed. I fully embrace the enlightened, fresh and disruptive approach that ACTIVE brings to venture capital in Europe, with a true focus on the people inside startups supporting them to realize their ambitions.”
Stockinger was Managing Director at Rocket Internet LatAm, which has helped to launch and support companies such as Groupon, eDarling and Zalando. Previously, he gained experience in management consulting with McKinsey & Company and was part of the founding team of the German e-commerce start-up Casacanda, which was successfully exited.
Commenting on his new role at ACTIVE, Georg Stockinger, said: “ACTIVE has strongly held values relating to the long-term development of people and naturally diverse teams, and I share these. It is offering much more to its portfolio companies than simply capital and to enable this, it employs experts who can advise on a wide range of skills from marketing and strategy through to internationalization and operational excellence. We are developing a unique support platform and my role is to ensure it is successfully used across our portfolio.”
ACTIVE also adds that their skills will greatly add to the company's existing international pool of languages, while the two newcomers will also bring in fresh perspectives:
“Sebastian and Georg add immensely to the rich diversity of the ACTIVE team that is now composed of 7 nationalities and speaks 10 languages,” said Ricard Söderberg, Founding Partner at ACTIVE Venture Partners. “They are committed to helping us to challenge and change our traditional sector through our new approach to venture capital. They bring their experience and networks from the US, Latin America and Asia to our portfolio entrepreneurs and can add great value through their operational start-up expertise. Sebastian and Georg will greatly enhance our support and partnership with the entrepreneurial teams that work with us.”
To date, the VC firm’s portfolio includes 23 companies across Europe and a total of €74 million invested through two funds. ACTIVE has presence in Spain and Germany. In Scandinavia, the company has offices in Stockholm.