Sky has announced plans to increase the reach and scale of its start-up investment and commercial partnership activity with the opening of a new office in Berlin as well as a $4 million (€3.4m) commitment to Israeli venture capital fund, Remagine Ventures.
Sky says the the office will give them a local presence in Berlin’s ever growing start-up eco-system, enabling the team to better build relationships with investors in the region and to find the most promising entrepreneurs to invest in and partner with. In addition, the team’s remit will extend to scouting for the most relevant companies across Germany and also the Nordics.
Remagine Ventures, a newly launched fund based in Tel Aviv, is managed by Kevin Baxpehler (former investor at ProSiebenSat1.Media) and Eze Vidra (former Partner at Google Ventures Europe). The VC fund will specifically focus on technology start-ups within tech, entertainment, data and commerce. Partnering with Remagine will give Sky more access into Israel’s dynamic and fast growing technology companies, which includes a strong pool of talent in computer vision and machine learning.
Having first established its start-up focused team out of London in 2012, Sky subsequently opened a San Francisco office in 2014. Sky has invested in over 20 companies over the period across the US, UK and France, including investments in Roku, 1Mainstream, Elemental, The Rights Xchange and Drone Racing League. This next leg of growth will expand Sky’s access to the most relevant and exciting start-ups from across Central Europe, Northern Europe and Israel.
Emma Lloyd, Group Director of Business Development and Partnerships at Sky comments: “Six years on from our first investment, we’re expanding our start-up activity across Europe and Israel. Spending time in both Berlin and Tel Aviv has left us hugely impressed with the energy, dynamism and talent of both tech scenes. This is an exciting new chapter for us and we can’t wait to get started and uncover new, innovative start-ups across the regions and beyond.”
Carsten Schmidt, CEO of Sky Deutschland comments: “I’m very pleased to be expanding Sky’s activity with the establishment of a new Berlin base for our venture activity. I continue to be impressed by the strength of tech talent in Berlin, and ever growing pool of start-ups bringing new and innovative ideas to the German market and beyond. I look forward to us establishing more partnerships with early stage companies by setting up our Berlin based office this year.”