Advent raises £300m in five months

Venture capital group Advent Ventures Partners has closed the largest UK-based technology fund, seeing investment opportunities that are 'better than ever'.

Advent Venture Partners has raised £300m (E474m) for its Advent Private Equity Fund III in just five months.

Commenting on the timing of the fund, Sir David Cooksey, chairman of Advent, said: “The quality and range of new opportunities is better than ever before and valuations are returning to more sensible levels.”

The fund will mainly focus on investments in the UK but will also look at continental Europe and the US. It will mainly target emerging growth companies in the information technology, communications and life sciences sectors. The fund is the largest UK-based technology focused fund.

UK investors contributed half the total commitments. They included Abbey National, NatWest Pension Fund, Pantheon Ventures and its clients and the government sponsored UK High Technology Fund. Continental European investors have pledged 28 per cent and the balance has come from US investors, including funds managed by Bessemer Trust and Frank Russell Capital. Half of the investments came from previous Advent investors.

Four investments have already been made from the new fund.