Orange separated its venture capital division into a standalone company allocating it €350 million, with the new business set to focus on investments related to its parent’s core proposition and adjacent sectors deemed high-growth.
In a statement, Orange claimed the newly separated Orange Ventures was one of the top ten venture capital funds in Europe.
The business is charged with controlling an existing portfolio built since the formation of the operator’s investment arm in 2015 and seeking out new opportunities.
Current interests are centred on areas related to mobile and communications including cybersecurity, digital enterprise and mobile financial services. Moving forward, Orange noted the fund would also look to new high-growth sectors, citing e-health as an example.
Its portfolio varies from seed-stage start-ups in MEA to mature companies in Europe and the US. Investments made so far were at a maximum of €20 million per funding round.
Orange Ventures president and managing partner Jerome Berger emphasised there would still be strong links with the operator group, despite the unit being a legally separate entity.
The two businesses will “closely support each start-up post-investment” to contribute to Orange Ventures’ development and ease “direct and structured access to the Orange ecosystem whenever it is relevant”, Berger explained.