History of Passion Capital
Passion Capital, the venture capital firm was launched in March 2011 as a private-public hybrid fund with an initial fund of $60 million, of which $40 million was from the United Kingdom government. The fund partners are Stefan Glaenzer, Eileen Burbidge and Robert Dighero. The firm announced, at the end of May 2015, that they raised their second fund in the sum of $69 million.
Transparency initiatives of Passion Capital
Passion Capital has pioneered a number of transparency initiatives with relation both to company operation and to investment. In June 2013, they announced that they would have a “plain English term sheet” eschewing the use of legal jargon, and put up their sample term sheet online. Passion Capital also publishes information annually on the status of its current and past investments, as well as its average salaries and other expenses.
Stefan Glaenzer was named the best angel investor in Europe by readers and editors of TechCrunch Europe, and was the first investor and executive chairman of Last.fm, seeing that company through to its sale to CBS (2007 USD $270 million). Prior to that Stefan was co-founder of Ricardo.de, one of the first European online auction and classified sites, sold to QXL. (@stefanglaenzer)
Eileen Burbidge was ranked #11 in The 100 most influential technology investors in Europe according to “online social capital” by the Telegraph. She was investment director for private early stage VC firm Ambient Sound Investments, founded by the Skype founding engineers. Prior to that, Eileen was products director for both Yahoo! Answers and Skype. (@eileentso)
Robert Dighero, recently profiled by the Financial Times, was the former CFO of QXL/Tradus plc, sold to Naspers (2008 £1 billion) having guided the company from its founding to listing on four public exchanges, and personally managing more than 15 M&A transactions. Prior to that, Robert was CFO and founding executive of AOL Europe. (@robertdighero)
The firm was awarded its ECF mandate in December 2010 and closed all of its investor commitments in fewer than 3 months for what was the largest ECF in the programme’s history.
Passion Capital LP is managed by Passion Capital Investments LLP, registered in England and Wales under number OC361157. Caledonia Capital Managers Limited is authorised and regulated by the FSA and is registered in Scotland under number 218683. Caledonia was appointed interim operator of the fund, with all non-regulated activities being carried out by Passion Capital Investments until it has been regulated by the FSA after which it took over full operation and management of Passion Capital LP.
All About The Fund Incubator
The Fund Incubator Limited provides services to fund managers who are either in the start-up phase and are not yet regulated or where they need to be structured as advisers to a regulated management company.
The company was originally set up in 2001 to help exploit investment ideas generated by leading Scottish Universities and was named Caledonia Capital Managers Limited. In 2011 it took on its first regulatory umbrella mandate – the £37m Passion Capital fund and has thrived since. It has now helped and mentored numerous funds and fund managers to navigate the fund raising, fund management and regulatory processes.
In 2016 Caledonia was the subject of an MBO led by Stephen Geddes and Barry Lawson, two highly experienced private equity professionals who had worked closely with Caledonia for many years and developed a deep understanding of the business and the opportunity that a flexible, responsive regulatory umbrella could create.