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Polish Radix Ventures With a First Close at €41M to Invest in DeepTech

Pawel Bochniarz, Radix
Image credit: Pawel Bochniarz, Radix
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In a Nutshell

 

  • Yesterday, Polish Radix Ventures announced the first close of their fund, at €41M. 
  • They will invest in deep tech entrepreneurs across CEE, with a goal to raise at least €60M to support 16-20 startups. The focus is the late seed stage with tickets of approximately €1-2M.
  • The investors in the first close include the European Investment Fund (EIF), PFR Ventures GreenHub, and a number of tech professionals from across CEE and beyond. 

 

Their Background Story

 

Radix Ventures is a VC fund, established by investors and tech entrepreneurs, including Paweł Bochniarz, Wojciech Ratymirski, and Michał Urbanowski.

The fund has a strong presence in Poland, while the strategy extends across CEE, including collaborations in Romania, Bulgaria, and Hungary. 

As Bochniarz mentioned in a previous interview for The Recursive, they “teamed up with people across the region who can provide us with access to deal flow.” Take a look at their current focus and challenges that they have faced since 2021, when they began fundraising. 

 

R:What challenges did you face during the fundraising process?

Paweł Bochniarz: To say that the fundraising environment is not particularly friendly at this point is probably an understatement. Potential LPs are extremely selective and there are also many very competent GP teams out there competing for the money. It was challenging to get a significant anchor investor on board to make sure that the size of the fund is aligned with our strategy. Many GP teams get stuck nowadays with small first closes and find it difficult to move up from that point. We did not want to be in that position. 

Our fundraising strategy was focused on that so once we confirmed the backing of the EIF, things went much smoother. Still, many LPs who previously invested in VCs were not willing to commit again, some for being disappointed with the historical returns (although VCs are generally a very well performing asset class), others because they had preference for less risky assets.

Read more:  Flashpoint launches a $200m secondary fund to support more SaaS startups from the CEE ecosystem

 

R: What makes the CEE region particularly promising for deep tech investments?

B: The abundance of talent and lack of adequate funding make it possible for a deep tech fund like ours to be extremely selective and focus on the very best teams.

Also, the fact that research teams in the public and private sectors have been opening up to international cooperation and are more able to produce world class research is a major factor. 

Last but not least the AI revolution unraveling before our  eyes calls on strong competencies in computer science and math, and these, as we all know, are our areas of strength across CEE.

 

R: Could you share more on the criteria you use to evaluate potential startups?

B: We always look for ambitious teams solving huge problems. 

The name Radix stems from Radical, and we are looking for radical, disruptive innovators. These are some of the first things we are looking at. That also means that we probably pay more attention than your average VC to issues related to IP strategy, as you need to be able to protect your competitive edge and build moats. 

Last but not least, we look for a strong positive impact on the environment – so we work at the crossroads of deeptech and greentech.

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https://therecursive.com/author/teodoraatanasova/

Teodora Atanasova is a News Editor at The Recursive. She covers everything around funding rounds, exits, startups expanding to international markets, big tech opening R&D in CEE, meaningful for the ecosystem partnerships.