R3i Ventures has decided to make Luxembourg its entry point to the European market for start-ups, especially those in health and more advanced technologies, and brings the most promising into the ecosystem by providing them with its expertise.
Until now, a start-up started in the country of residence of its founders, developed its product by widening its circle to find financing, before becoming interested in entering a much larger market, be it the United States on one side or China on the other.
R3i Ventures is betting on reversing the dynamic: its kind of one-stop shop for incubation and start-up growth is directly located on three continents, in Singapore, Luxembourg and Silicon Valley. And on three verticals: the marketing of the product or service of the start-up, access to capital, and R&D and legislation. These orientations are materialized in two "House of" as there are already many in Luxembourg: a House of Deeptech and a House of Medtech. In each of the two new houses, cohorts of start-ups will have three months of incubation and six months of acceleration. The next one is scheduled for the spring .
Three years after their arrival in Luxembourg, Leesa Soulodre and her teams no longer want to go under the radar. “We are not coming to take the place of someone in Luxembourg but to add what is missing to help the development of certain start-ups. We therefore took the time to study the market and make contacts,” explains this young woman with an impressive CV.
Four start-ups already arrived
Ministry of the Economy, Luxinnovation, Technoport, Foundry, Luxembourg Space Agency: everywhere, the "navigators", as they called themselves, showed their credentials, "the time to set up a fund to say that we ourselves came with the intention of bringing business here”.
“R3i's vision is to be the inclusive investor investing $1 billion in leading edge technology companies that are helping build a net zero economy by 2031. We connect visionaries with the talent, know-how and access to capital to scale breakthrough innovation for impact,” comments Ms. Soulodre. “And we want to make an impact in the area of gender equality.”
“Our role is to help bridge our founders' funding gap in deeptech/medtech seed investments and land and scale them safely in the European Union; to provide an alternative investment option for family offices and funds of funds in the deeptech asset class with a focus on smart city, net zero and gender lens, and to contribute to the development of the Luxembourg's deeptech/medtech fabric as a smart city and to its economic development – through job creation, supply chain and consumer effects,” she explains.
The company completed its “market tests” in 2021 with 60 companies and is now officially landing via an investment fund and an incubator platform in 2022. So last year, R3i invited four start-ups to set up their European operational or research and development center in Luxembourg, such as:
– Meracle Health, which wants to improve the way drugs are used to treat asthma and certain respiratory diseases;
– ViewMind ( arrival in the Fit4Start program in 2019 ), which is able, with its glasses, to detect dementia and Alzheimer's disease well in advance, which allows both to better support the treatment, but also to reduce more than seven times the cost of these treatments;
– Siga OT , which has made the detection of industrial electrical signals the heart of its solution to fight against cybercrime in an industrial environment or critical sites;
Others following the same movement: incubation, acceleration and financing, all with the keys to the European market. As a sign of its ambition, R3i will organize its “unicorn cup” on February 23, bringing together the 10 most promising projects in its network and a global network of investors.