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OMERS to commit $340 million to European startups

Ontario Municipal Employees' Retirement System, Toronto, announced Monday plans to commit €300 million ($340 million) to European startup companies through its venture capital arm, OMERS Ventures.

The venture capital fund will invest in companies in first and second funding rounds, including Series A- to B-stage companies, and will typically invest €5 million to €10 million a round, OMERS Ventures, which has C$800 million ($600 million) in assets, said in a news release.

"We have seen the European tech sector reach escape velocity over the past couple of years, producing more and more companies of worldwide renown," Damien Steel, managing partner and head of ventures, said in the release.

The operation will be run out of the public fund's London office. In January, OMERS Ventures also opened a new office in California's Silicon Valley.

"As the next step in our global expansion strategy, we are now committing dedicated capital to the Continent's most innovative startups because we believe the best is yet to come," Mr. Steel said.

Ontario Municipal Employees' Retirement System has C$95 billion ($71.2 billion) in assets.