Lawson Conner, the investment manager platform, said its beens awarded the coveted EuVECA designation from the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). This effectively means UK venture capital funds that use its platform can now have unfettered access to European-based investors.
The EuVECA regulation allows venture capitalists to market their funds to investors across the EU through a voluntary EU-wide passport, without having to meet all the demands of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers’ Directive (AFIM) .
“We are extremely excited to be one of the very first UK platforms to win a EuVECA designation,” says Andrew Frost, the director of investment management solutions at Lawson Conner in London.
“We can now help those VC funds that want to market their funds to European investors meet all the necessary compliance obligations, without having to do it in house,” he said.
According to Invest Europe, venture capital fund raising grew to a post-crisis record of 6.4 bln eur in 2016; these VC funds collectively invested 4.3 bln eur in over 3,000 companies.
“Taking advantage of the EuVECA designation will allow UK VC funds to tap into a huge pool of institutional capital,”added Frost.
Lawson Conner said it is in the process of helping its VC clients, such as Firstminute Capital, take advantage of its EuVECA designation. Firstminute, a new 85 mln usd VC seed fund has appointed Lawson Conner to act for it.
“We aspire to be the most helpful seed fund in Europe,” saidSpencer Crawley, head of investments and general partner at Firstminute Capital in London. He added, “It is important for us to be able to market our business to European investors quickly. By appointing Lawson Conner we have saved having to undertake the regulatory process in-house. This means it has been a much speedier and cost-effective process.”