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A European early-stage investor who backed 3 buzzy unicorns going public this year says a Silicon Valley rolodex is key to picking future winners

Mount Equity Group Tokyo, Japan > News > Markets > A European early-stage investor who backed 3 buzzy unicorns going public this year says a Silicon Valley rolodex is key to picking future winners

Hoxton’s Hussein Kanji (centre) said that contacts in Silicon Valley are crucial for picking top-tier startups in Europe.

Hoxton Ventures wrote early checks for three European unicorns that will go public this year. Partner Hussein Kanji believes being able to pick up the phone to Silicon Valley is crucial in Europe. A record €45.3 billion ($54.7 billion) was invested into European startups by VCs in 2020. See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A rolodex of Silicon Valley contacts is key to picking top European startups, according to an early-stage investor who backed three unicorns going public this year.

Hussein Kanji is a partner at London-based venture capital firm Hoxton Ventures, which was founded in 2013 and wrote early checks for food-delivery firm Deliveroo, cybersecurity company Darktrace, and health-tech startup Babylon.

It’s a potential return that bigger operators in Europe could be proud of. Deliveroo and Darktrace completed multibillion-dollar IPOs in London this year, while Babylon has unveiled its intention to list through a $4.2 billion SPAC deal in the US.

Europe’s burgeoning tech sector has attracted increasing levels of venture capital investment in recent years,