The investment branch of Sweden’s SEB Group has been investing in what it calls “deep technology” startups for over 20 years.
Since 1995, it has been investing in a wide range of startups through SEB Venture Capital, including management app Tink and post-trade securities startup Information Mosaic. In 2010, CA Technologies purchased SEB investment Arcot for $200m, and in 2014, Cisco purchased SEB investment Tail-f for $175m.
But when it came to backing its first bitcoin business, the team of nine investors with an allocation of about $250m (2bn SEK) from SEB Group didn’t want to rush the process.
Head of SEB Venture Capital, David Sonnek, acknowledged the investment is “purely financial”, but stressed the addition of digital currency processor Coinify to its portfolio is about more than an exit strategy.
He told CoinDesk:
“This kind of platform really unleashes the innovation of us all, and that may be the most important aspect.”
That said, SEB will also be taking a bigger role at the startup as part of the $4m investment, also participated in by SEED Invest Denmark
SEB’s investment manager Stefan Olofsson will serve on Coinify’s board of directors, and Filip Petersson is