Microsoft opens European hub for its venture fund M12, invests in SuperAwesome

Microsoft announced today the opening of the European office for its corporate venture fund M12. The launching is part of the software giant's plans to look for opportunities to invest in companies providing services in big data, analytics, business software as a service, cloud infrastructure, machine learning, artificial intelligence, productivity, and security.

The focus of M12 will be on companies in the Series A through C funding stages. As part of that effort, M12 has made an investment in SuperAwesome, a UK-based provider of platform for ensuring kids are safe on the web. The firm claims some notable clients such as LEGO, NBC Universal, and Hasbro. These companies use SuperAwesome's platform to deliver safe content to children.

It's not clear how much M12 has invested in SuperAwesome. Nonetheless, Dylan Collins, SuperAwesome CEO, wrote in a blog post that the move marks a significant milestone, thus:

"Last week’s enactment of the Age Appropriate Design Code in the UK is a preview of how the internet will look in five years. Laws will not just protect kids’ digital privacy (as with COPPA today) but they will also ensure that any general audience service supports kids as one of their main user types. Making the internet safer for kids is a sector-agnostic mission. As increasing numbers of companies outside of the core kids sector realise that children cannot be ignored, we’ve begun to shift our horizons to the wider internet."

SuperAwesome's new backing from M12 comes as companies in Europe have to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation. The venture fund also backed other European firms before including Beamery, Comtravo, Hazy, Kahoot!, Pickit, TwentyBN, and Unbabel.

The latest investment marks its first since opening an office in the region. M12 also has offices in San Francisco, Seattle, Tel Aviv, and Bengaluru.

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