Eyrir Sprotar completes first round of financing
Eyrir Invest’s seed and growth fund, Eyrir Sprotar slhf., has completed its first round of financing with contributions from institutional investors. Eyrir Sprotar is already invested in a number of promising startups and is reviewing a number of new projects.
Eyrir Sprotar is run by Eyrir Invest in cooperation with Arion banki, who are the two largest owners of the fund. Arion bank has been an active supporter of the Icelandic startup community in recent years. Its involvement in the sector includes running the startup accelerator
Startup Reykjavik and directly supporting startup founders. Other investors are pension funds and private investors. At the end of the first financing round, Eyrir Sprotar amounts to ISK 2.5 billion (c. €16.7 million). The fund is still in discussions with a few interested investors regarding their involvement and a second round of financing is expected to be concluded shortly. Arctica Finance was the financial advisor to Eyrir Sprotar. Örn Valdimarsson, managing director of Eyrir Sprotar: “We are very happy to have concluded this financing milestone. We have been involved in a number of promising projects during the recent months and this financing round enables us to further support those projects. Furthermore, we expect to be able to announce new investments very soon.”
Thordur Magnusson, chairman of Eyrir Sprotar’s investment committee, says the Icelandic startup environment is both fertile and promising. “The environment which has been fostered in Iceland over the recent years to support startups provides excellent foundation upon which technical know-how can be built. However, there has been a lack of financing and capability to grow sales and distribution networks overseas. This financing round and other startup funds will satisfy the need to support the further growth of the companies of the future.”
“Arion banki has put great emphasis on supporting Icelandic startups, including through the Startup Reykjavik and Startup Energy Reykjavik projects. Through these projects, Arion banki has invested in over 50 startups. We have felt there was a need for financing options for startups and therefore we are especially pleased to be a partner in Eyrir Sprotar. We believe this investment will prove to be a profitable one.” says Arion bank CEO, Höskuldur Ólafsson.
Experienced Investment Committee
The Investment Committee of Eyrir Sprotar is comprised of Thordur Magnusson, Hilmar Bragi Janusson, Kristin Gudmundsdottir and Magnus Ingi Oskarsson. Janusson is the dean of the University of Iceland’s department of Engineering and Natural Sciences and former director of Product, Research and Development of Ossur. Gudmundsdottir is the former CEO and CFO of Skipti and CFO of Grandi. Oskarsson is one of the founders of Calidris which was acquired by Sabre Airline Solutions in 2010. Magnusson is the chairman of the board of Eyrir Invest and has been involved in the growth of a number of startups.
In addition, Eyrir Sprotar has built up a network of individuals who will provide support and oversight for Eyrir Sprotar’s portfolio companies. These individuals have extensive operational know-how which can be applied to the technical development and the growth of sales and distribution networks of these companies. “We expect quick results. The startup community is full of promising opportunities which we at Eyrir Sprotar are excited to explore.” says Magnusson.