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NEWS January 9, 2018

Sting co-founds the new venture fund Luminar Ventures together with successful business angels

Jacob Key, Founding Partner of Luminar Ventures together with Pär Hedberg, CEO of Sting.

Luminar Ventures today announces a 500 MSEK fund focusing on seed stage technology companies in Sweden. Luminar Ventures has been initiated and co-founded by Sting and and the successful angel investors Magnus Bergman and Jacob Key, who will be the fund’s General Partners.

Luminars’s core investment focus is on scalable digital seed stage companies from Sweden, founded by highly motivated and talented entrepreneurs with a vision to disrupt or transform major industries. The fund is looking to lead larger seed rounds through an average investment of around 10 MSEK, but will also do pre-seed and series A investments.

Founding partners, Magnus Bergman and Jacob Key are both former serial entrepreneurs and active angel investors. Over the last 10 years, Magnus Bergman made over 30 seed investments with a handful of great exits, making Magnus one of the most experienced and successful tech angel investors in Sweden. “With a long background in working with startups we understand the challenges of building global companies. We founded Luminar to share our experience and bridge the gap between the angel and A-round with both financing and active professional support”, said Magnus Bergman, Founding Partner of Luminar Ventures, in a comment to the launch of the fund.

Before founding Luminar Ventures, Jacob Key made close to 20 early stage investments, with 3 successful exits to date. “We are delighted to get started with Luminar Ventures and are already in closed dialogue with a number of promising startups across Sweden. As former entrepreneurs and angel investors, our aim is to be more hands-on in the early growth stage than the general VC and to work closely with the founders of our portfolio companies”, comments Jacob Key, Founding Partner of Luminar Ventures.

Joining the team are also Linda Höglund and Daniel Karsberg. Linda has a background as global CFO at fast scaling unicorns, including Klarna in Europe and Grab in South East Asia. Daniel joins Luminar from his most recent role as Investment Manager at Creathor Venture, where he led Creathor’s Nordic operations.

Sting, the leading startup ecosystem builder in Sweden and operator of one of the most established accelerator programs in the Nordics, is one of the co-founders of Luminar Ventures.

“The initiative to start Luminar Ventures is part of our mission to contribute to a world class eco system for technology startups in Stockholm and Sweden”, comments Pär Hedberg, CEO of Sting. “Luminar is a potential investor in the Sting companies, as well as a potential follow-on investor to the portfolio companies in our Propel Capital. It is however important to note that Sting does not have any exclusivity with the fund and we will of course, as always, encourage the Sting companies to evaluate all relevant financing options, Pär Hedberg continues.

The fund also has a strategic partnership with KTH Holding, which is the holding company of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology – one of the leading technical and engineering universities in Europe. Sting and KTH Holding are both minority owners of the holding company of the fund. They support the fund with a strong deal flow and access to their respective innovation systems and networks. Luminar Ventures has also built an active network of partners throughout Sweden and within several industry verticals to ensure a high and qualitative flow of investment opportunities.

Major investors in Luminar Ventures are the European Investment Fund, through the Strategic Venture Initiative, Saminvest and a number of professional private investors and institutions.

About Sting
Since 2002, Sting has supported entrepreneurs to develop their business ideas into successful growth companies. Sting offers selected tech startups financing (via Propel Capital and the Sting Business Angels network), business development support, recruitment support and provides access to world-class networks as well as office space at co-working spaces like SUP46 and THINGS. Sting has supported over 200 startups since the start, of which 68 percent continue to grow today.

About Luminar
Luminar is a Swedish based venture capital fund focused on early stage startups with global scale and ambitions. Founded by experienced entrepreneurs and angel investors Magnus Bergman and Jacob Key, Luminar provides early stage capital, network and hands-on company-building support to leading startup teams throughout Sweden helping them build the next global success stories.

About The Swedish Venture Initiative
The Swedish Venture Initiative is an initiative created by cooperation between Sweden and the European Investment Fund and financed under European Structural and Investment Funds.

About Saminvest AB

Saminvest AB is a Swedish government owned company that invests in privately operated venture capital funds, with a focus on Swedish based investments.

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