Investment firm Middlegame Ventures has announced a €10 million investment from Enterprise Ireland to create a pool of funding of up to €20 million for Irish fintech companies.
Middlegame, which has been actively targeting Irish start-ups over the last year or so, recently established an office in the Republic. The Washington-headquartered firm held a fintech-focused accelerator, known as NadiFin, in Dublin and Luxembourg for the first time in 2019. It is due to hold a follow-up event shortly.
The investment firm late last year announced a first close of a new €150 million fund. Enterprise Ireland’s investment comes ahead of a final close, which is scheduled for late 2020.
Anchor investors in the fund include the Luxembourg Future Fund (LFF), the European Investment Fund (EIF) and S&P Global.
Middlegame said it is looking to back fintechs at the Series A stage, which typically involve investments of between $2 million to $15 million
"We are delighted to begin a long-term partnership with Enterprise Ireland to support great, transformational businesses in Ireland with our highly focused fund," said Middlegame co-founder Patrick Pinschmidt.
“We are excited to put our platform to work on behalf of Irish innovators solving difficult problems and rearchitecting the financial services industry,” he added.
Middlegame partners have invested more than $300 million in early-stage financial services companies over the past decade including Ripple, Tandem Bank, SimpleSurance, Coverhound and CompareAsia.
Mr Pinschmidt said the Irish fintech landscape complements the core investment focus areas of its fund across Europe and the US. He said “the team sees significant opportunities to partner with the Government, investors and market incumbents to accelerate ecosystem building efforts to help start-ups scale and grow by broadening commercial and investor touch points”.
Minister for Business Heather Humphreys said the introduction of the fund marks a "significant increase in the availability of capital for start-ups in fintech".