High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF), a German state and corporate-backed seed investor, has added two limited partners to take its second fund to more than €300m ($400m). The latest commitments from local retailer Metro Group and Media + More Venture, a consortium of three German-language publishers, takes HTGF’s second fund to €301.5m. The fund has 17 corporate limited partners that have committed an aggregate €41.5m with the remainder provided in a public-private partnership with the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology and the KFW Banking Group. The other corporate investors are Altana, BASF, B Braun, Robert Bosch, CEWE Color, Daimler, Deutsche Post DHL, Deutsche Telekom, Evonik, Qiagen, RWE Innogy, SAP, Tengelmann and Carl Zeiss. Media + More brings together three publishers: Badisches Pressehaus, publisher of Badische Zeitung, the Druck & Medien Heilbronn and Rhein Main, which produces Allgemeine Zeitung. The consortium committed €3m. Tilmann Distelbarth, publisher of the Heilbronner Stimme, said: “While the reach of our print products is largely stable, we need to redouble our efforts in the area of cross media in order to be able to offer our customers our content digitally on their smartphones or tablets, and not only in printed formats. “Other digital services, for example online advertising or other retail sales platforms offer business opportunities which are of increasing importance to maintaining the competitiveness of the publishing industry. With our investment in HTGF II, we are securing direct access to exactly these sort of innovations.” Alexander von Frankenberg, managing director of HTGF, said: “The Heilbronner Stimme has been involved with Kimeta, one of the companies held in our investment portfolio, and has used this relationship to open itself up to new, strategic business opportunities. “The consortium’s investment in High-Tech Gruenderfonds II will now provide all its members with access to a variety of disruptive technologies and with that a host of new possibilities in a variety of areas such as the digital world. By bringing together these established publishers with young high-tech start-ups, we are confident that synergies will be created to the benefit all the involved parties.” Metro committed an undisclosed amount and its partnership with HTGF is expected to help its portfolio companies expand internationally. Von Frankenberg added: “We are confident that this relationship will facilitate productive cooperation between Metro Group and the companies in our portfolio. While those young firms active in the areas of online business and advertising stand to benefit from our partner’s extensive and varied experience in these areas, we see…

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