Singular, a Parisian VC Firm, Secures $435M for its Second Fund

For a VC firm, the second fund is a make-or-break moment. First, after raising €225 million for its initial fund ($245 million at today’s exchange rate), Singular managed to raise €400 million for the second fund. Second, all the investors who participated in the first fund are back as limited partners in the second fund — this is a good signal. This wasn’t an obvious outcome for the VC firm, as it’s been a wild ride over the past two or three years in venture capital. Building a big European VC fundUnlike many VC firms based in Paris, Singular has been investing in European startups from day one.

When it comes to a VC firm, the second fund is a pivotal moment that can make or break their success. Unlike the initial fund, where money is raised based on an investment thesis without any track record or return on investment, the second fund is a different story.

For Paris-based VC firm Singular, co-founded by Raffi Kamber and Jérémy Uzan and investing across Europe, the second fund proved to be a significant uptick. With their initial fund raising €225 million (equivalent to $245 million in today’s exchange rate), Singular successfully raised €400 million for their second fund. And even more impressive, all investors from the first fund returned as limited partners for the second fund, a strong signal of confidence.

This outcome was far from certain, as the past two to three years have been a wild ride in venture capital. After the investment frenzy of 2021 and early 2022 that led to extremely high valuations, the market has since calmed down significantly.

According to Atomico’s State of European Tech report, European startups are on track to raise $45 billion this year, a far cry from the $85 billion raised in 2022. This sudden shift has left many VC firms in a precarious position.

“There were a lot of companies raising funds at a fairly rapid cycles, and raising the top end of what they could raise. And so, statistically, the average check had gone up and the pace of deployment had accelerated a bit,” Jérémy Uzan shared.

As a result, Singular had to make a decision- should they continue to engage in this volatile market or step back? After consulting with their limited partners, they chose to stay in the game.

Now, with many startups raising rounds at flat or even lower valuations than their previous round, how has Singular’s performance been impacted? While the firm isn’t sharing specific metrics on their first fund’s financial performance, Uzan assured that it has been good.

And once again, all existing limited partners have returned for the second fund, a clear indication that the VC investment frenzy hasn’t deterred their confidence.

With a focus on raising a large European VC fund, Singular has set their sights on competing with the likes of well-known firms such as Index Ventures, Accel, Balderton, Atomico, and EQT.

“There are lots of small funds springing up, very often built around individuals, either with a solo GP approach, or a seed fund approach with a particular vertical, or focused on a particular geography,” Uzan explained. “But a generalist VC firm on a European scale, with no vertical, no geography, just competing with the few brand names that naturally come to mind, I’m not sure if there were many new ones.”

While other VC firms in Paris tend to focus mainly on French startups, Singular has been investing in European startups since its inception. And in many ways, they aim to become a top-tier VC firm, rivaling the well-established names in the industry.

“Some of Singular’s portfolio companies that we’ve covered before on TechCrunch include cancer care software startup Resilience, corporate mental health service, data monitoring platform Soda, and automated accounting startup for freelancers Indy.” Uzan listed a few examples of their diverse portfolio.

Singular invests in series A rounds and beyond, with a focus on deep pockets to support startups requiring significant initial investments. However, they also consider very early- stage startups with exceptional teams and potential, as well as series B rounds with high upside potential.

“We still have this approach – it’s a bit of a cliché, but it’s real – which is to look for the best teams. We consider that the teams will lead us to projects with a high potential,” Uzan shared.

And once Singular identifies a promising investment opportunity, they try to lead the round, ensuring active involvement with their portfolio companies and CEOs. “Raffi says we think we’ve done a good job if we’re one of the ten names on the speed dial list on your iPhone,” Uzan added.

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Kira Kim

Kira Kim is a science journalist with a background in biology and a passion for environmental issues. She is known for her clear and concise writing, as well as her ability to bring complex scientific concepts to life for a general audience.

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