Amadeus Capital Partners, a UK-based venture capital firm, has made its first investment in Brazil by leading a series B round of funding for Bidu Holdings, an online insurance price comparison and brokerage business.
Other investors in the $8.9 million round include venture capital firms Monashees Capital and Otto Capital Partners and media business Bertelsmann. The capital will be used to “strike new partnerships, diversify the company’s products and build market share”, according to a statement.
Bidu was established in 2012 with funding from a group of investors including Monashees. As well as insurance products, Bidu also provides financial products such as credit cards.
The investment in Bidu is the first transaction Amadeus has made from its Amadeus IV Digital Prosperity Fund, which held a $75 million first close last July.
The vehicle will invest in businesses that are developing online and mobile applications and services targeted at the emerging middle class in 19 developing markets, which span Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and Southeast Asia. However, the fund’s geographical focus will be dictated by demand, which means it can invest in companies anywhere in the world.
The cornerstone investor in the fund is MTN Group, a global telecoms provider based in South Africa. MTN had originally approached the firm about an Africa-focused fund, but were persuaded by Amadeus to increase the scope of the vehicle, Anne Glover, managing partner at Amadeus told PEI last year.
“We said: 'That's great – but to attract the leading companies globally and scout technology globally, it needs to be bigger than that'.” Bringing in other institutional investors would also help to create the “scale and independence [needed] to attract the best entrepreneurs,” she said.