Announcing our $10m raise to amplify our impact on the country's best technology startups

Icehouse Ventures

Icehouse Ventures ‘VCs itself’ with $10m equity raise 

Icehouse Ventures CEO, Robbie Paul

Auckland, Nov 30: Icehouse Ventures, New Zealand’s most active venture capital firm, has raised $10m in equity capital to amplify its impact on the country’s best technology companies. 

By contrast to the $95m Icehouse Ventures has raised for its funds this year, including Growth Fund II which is nearing close, the $10m investment is specifically for new people, technology, and resources to help Kiwi entrepreneurs achieve more. 

The raise was supported by business leaders and family offices across New Zealand, as well as further afield in Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, and the United States.  

Among the investors were numerous entrepreneurs including Brooke Roberts (Sharesies), Philip Fierlinger (Upstock). Sean Molloy (Ternary Kinetics), Milot Zeqiri and Brittany Gribben (ArchiPro), Mike Carden (Joyous), Scott McPhee (Torque Bio), Anne Fulton (Fuel50), Jamie Beaton (Crimson Education), Guy Horrocks (Carnival & Solve), Will Barker (Mint Innovation), Derek Handley (Aera), Shaun Quincey (Simfuni), Andrew McPhee (Seene), and Tim Norton (90 Seconds).  

Serial entrepreneur and investor, Guy Horrocks, said “Investing in Icehouse Ventures is like buying a stake in the long-term success of New Zealand’s startup ecosystem. I am extremely passionate about and bullish on the direction it is heading.” 

Icehouse Ventures CEO Robbie Paul says the interest from all parts of the community reflects the community’s buy-in to the firm’s mission to make technology New Zealand’s largest export.  

“Even the investors who declined this opportunity shared an optimism for the bright future ahead for New Zealand’s startup community,” said Paul. 

Four years after establishing itself as an independent company and raising $5m in equity capital, Icehouse Ventures has tripled its staff to 24, increased funds under management by fivefold, built a proprietary technology platform, and grown its valuation from $18m to $50m. 

In recent years the firm has complemented its early stage investing with later stage funds. Growth Fund I backed 32 companies including some of New Zealand’s fastest growing companies like Hnry, Tracksuit, Halter, and Crimson Education. The 32 companies generated more than $360m in aggregate revenue in the last year, an increase of $100m since last year.  

As well as traditional venture capital investment, the firm has partnered with Outset Ventures (the birthplace of Rocket Lab and Lanzatech) and added more alternative models such as its Brand Fund, in collaboration with Previously Unavailable.  

Paul says the funding will go toward long-term, higher risk initiatives that help Icehouse Ventures find, invest in, and support more Kiwi companies from pre-seed to pre-IPO.  

“The entire VC industry exists to enable businesses to grow faster and aim higher. Since our first capital raise in 2019, we have proven that equity capital can help us do the same and be a better partner to the most ambitious founders.”  

The infusion of capital will aid Icehouse Ventures in building more in-house capability to assist their portfolio companies, from legal, communications, and HR, through to finance. 

It will also strengthen the technology platform of Icehouse Ventures, a proposition that was enabled by the firm’s first capital raise. The investor portal, set up three years ago with CTO Peter Thomson at the helm, has facilitated >$265k in investments per day into New Zealand startups since the start of 2021.  

The addition of data science to this technology stack will mean greater insights for portfolio companies and will improve the precision with which Icehouse Ventures performs due diligence. 

Icehouse Ventures will also double down on community building for which it has become known. They have hosted more than one event per week over the last two years including the annual Showcase event, the First Cut challenge, Careers of the Future, their Women Founders Retreat, and portfolio company bus tours that connect investors with Kiwi startups. 

“With 1,500 investors in our funds and 320 portfolio companies, we have proven that a large, diverse, and aligned network can provide unmatched support to founders. This capital raise- and in particular the great individuals providing the capital- help us build upon our network-led model.”  

For entrepreneur and 90 Seconds founder Tim Norton, his backing is a chance to reinvest in the future of Aotearoa’s startup ecosystem. 

"Icehouse Ventures has been a great investor in my company over the last seven years. I am excited to partner with them to back the next generation of Kiwi startups,” said Norton. 


Tags: Startups, Founders, CEO, Portfolio

Icehouse Ventures

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