It’s no secret that raising money for high-growth ventures in Spain is a monumental task, especially at the seed level. Whether from the lack of experienced angel investors or the competition from the explosion of new startups in a down economy, getting that crucial angel investment can sometimes seem like mission impossible. That’s why Barcelona startup Treeveo decided to change their approach and successfully (and quickly) closed a €150k All Saints Round.
Treeveo, a web-based strategy execution software, was founded by Jeroen Kemperman and Paulo Martins and was accepted into the Wayra Barcelona class of 2013 back in March. In August, they chose an alternative method of fundraising, one that hadn’t been tried yet in Spain. The All Saints Round works by seeking a larger number of investors that will buy smaller chunks of equity or “tickets”. The main advantages of the All Saints Round are speed and diversity as the smaller tickets allow for a standardized shareholder agreement and offer the opportunity of investment to a wider range of angels, thus providing a stronger and more dynamic network of shareholders. Read more
Innovation does not often occur by an individual acting on their own. You need a team effort to push an idea through the innovation funnel and turn it into an implemented product or service. The team does not necessarily have to be the same throughout the entire process, but a good balance in technological, business and user-experience skills are key.
Team up to innovate and stimulate business growth
Today’s innovators and entrepreneurs are increasingly part of a growing community that is networked and connected in the on- and offline world to share knowledge, best practices and stories, as well as to meet potential employees, investors and clients. Having access to a local and global network is an important asset: it will help you to test assumptions, open doors and raise awareness for the change you have in store.
The importance of the team can also be witnessed in investor’s criteria. Just to quote a few:
- “Early stage funding is even more about the team than the idea. A team needs to have what it takes to succeed, whether they understand their proposed customer, and whether they can pivot towards a scalable business model worthy of a follow-on investment. (Innosight)”
- “A superior technical team. (Techfarm)”
- “Track record and professional background of the team. (Active Venture Partners)”
- “Experienced management team with a thorough and credible execution plan. Ensure that your team includes people who are leaders in their field, have a customer focus and understand the specific sub-segments of your target market. (MaRS)”
- “We look for teams of high-quality entrepreneurs with a track record of leadership and performance – either in the company’s specific industry or in prior entrepreneurial ventures. We also look at your team’s passion for and commitment to the new business idea, and your ability to inspire confidence among future stakeholders, including employees, potential customers, and investors. (Cambridge Angels)”
You have detected a serious challenge and need solutions to solve it? Now what? Read more
For the second time in as many years, Foundum Unplugged will be playing matchmaker in Barcelona on November 26th & 27th as they unite Europe’s most promising startups with top VCs and investors managing more than €5 billion in funds.
Foundum is the global startup ecosystem platform that connects entrepreneurs with all relevant stakeholders they need to create valuable relationships and grow their business. The Foundum platform promotes the entrepreneurial ecosystems by offering startups easy access to resources, knowledge, expertise & experienced professionals throughout the entire startup lifecycle.
This year, Foundum has upped the ante by inviting Europe’s most esteemed venture capital firms and private investors to Barcelona for two full days of startup matchmaking and workshops. Read more
“Good to start, bad to grow.” That’s becoming the unfortunate modus operandi of Spain, at least when it comes to building companies. Barcelona startup Teambox, a cloud-based collaboration and communications company, just closed a $5 million Series A round, and in the process moved their headquarters from Spain to the United States. As of this week, Teambox is officially a Delaware corporation.
The new round was led by Avalon Ventures (US-based), with the Data Collective Fund (US-based) also participating, and builds on previous angel funding since the company was launched in 2008. The $5 million Series A round brings the total company funds raised to $7 million, which also includes original investments from angel investors from Spain (Seedrocket and Keiretsu) and the United States (several individual executives from US tech firms).
While the move shouldn’t come as a surprise, it should serve as another painful reminder that dramatic changes have to be made if Spain plans on really harnessing the long-term economic power of entrepreneurship. Speaking off the cuff, the government needs to implement real, tangible incentives for companies to keep (or move) their headquarters in Spain. I’m talking corporate tax breaks and deferral options for startups, access to work visas to recruit talent, corporate-friendly hiring/firing practices to stay lean, and bankruptcy laws that don’t lead to permanent exile or worse. Fortunately, there is some recent movement on this front that will be rolled out in 2014 (hopefully).
The world of startups is fast-paced, unpredictable and constantly evolving. The same goes for my choice in breakfast cereal. This is not the case for large corporations where dramatic and unpredictable shifts are much less frequent. So why enforce and advocate the use of institutional financial modeling to startups? It makes no sense I tell you.
A large corporation that has been around for as long as horses, is able to produce much more realistic projections due to it’s substantial operational history and because large corporations deal with less uncertainty on a day-to-day basis. When it comes down to it, projections are projections, so some amount of guesswork comes into play even if you are at the reins of a blue chip, but to compare the two is pure folly. While Wall Street analysts come within a hairs breadth of predicating Apple’s third quarter earnings, how close do you think they’d come to guessing the performance of imastartup.com next year?
WHY DO STARTUPS USE THE SAME MODEL? Read more
Right now in Barcelona, there are several programs focused on creating the right ecosystem for business, technology, education and consequently innovation and economic growth. Just to name a few: Barcelona Growth, Barcelona Global and Barcelona KEY.
The first one, Growth, wants to promote economic growth by making Barcelona the ideal environment for businesses. How? By strengthening the ‘Barcelona brand’ and supporting entrepreneurs. The second one, Global, involves the private community in “making it happen”. Increasing the cities competitiveness by uniting stakeholders both multinationals and research institutes as entrepreneurial advisors and individuals to create an attractive city that will attract business and talent from all over the world. Today we shine a spotlight on Barcelona KEY (Knowledge Economy Yard) after having a talk with its director Miquel Barceló. Read more
ReviewPro, the leading customer intelligence tool for hotels, has received a €3 million venture capital investment from Barcelona’s ACTIVE Venture Partners. Founded in Barcelona in 2008, ReviewPro allows hotels to increase their guest satisfaction ratings by monitoring online reviews and actively managing their online reputation. Headquarted in Barcelona, ReviewPro already has offices in the United States and Latin America and will use the new funds to further expand internationally.
“ReviewPro is a prime example of the type of company that ACTIVE wants to work with in its international growth. Although still young, ReviewPro has established the Global Review Index ™ as an industry standard and is among the leaders in a field of activity that is experiencing extraordinary growth. Read more
Being member country of the European Union has long list of benefits. Of course, we all know about the ease of traveling between EU countries and the ability to pay with our shared currency, but part of the deal is that we can also choose to work from the city that offers us the most opportunity or just happens to be the hometown of our international love. However, it’s not perfect yet, as challenges still exist when dealing with the national legislation (like acquiring your NIE), but the fact remains that we must start working from a more unified perspective in order to compete with the Tigers and BRIC’s of the world in the economic food chain. We need to be smart, “green” and integrated. The European Commission is stimulating this effort through various programs. Lately, a lot of attention is given to the EU’s Horizon 2020 program for research and innovation, and with a budget of €80 billion, there is a lot of potential for the private sector get involved. Read more
CL3VER, the Barcelona startup dedicated to real-time 3D technology for mobile and web design, has closed a €625k seed round investment with Wayra, Caixa Capital Risc and a group of Business Angels including Jordi Priu, Robert Vilaseca, 101 Startups,
John Mark, and Narcis Griful, and Jordi Clavell.
Part of Wayra’s summer 2012 startup class, CL3VER aims to democratize the creation of ‘real-time 3D’ and ‘3D rendering’ through their all-in-one cloud platform. Originally founded under the name Bevelity in October 2011 by Viktor Nordstrom and Daniel Iborra, CL3VER enables designers, architects, and artists to make their content instantly available without requiring any plugins, allowing faster time to market at a lower production cost.
CL3VER’s proprietary platform gives 3D professionals the power of HMTL5 without having to learn any programming skills. This allows for the faster, cheaper and more collaborative creation and sharing of content through any device or social media platform. Read more
Last night, 400 of Barcelona’s most committed professionals gathered at the Palauet Albéniz on Montjuic for an “inspiring cocktail” to not only celebrate what this city has to offer, but more importantly, to identify Barcelona’s biggest weaknesses and set a course to improve them. The Barcel-Hola event was presented by Barcelona Global, the independent, not-for-profit civil society designed to “make Barcelona one of the most attractive cities in the world for business and talent.”
In addition to welcoming Barcelona’s international community and unifying all of the various groups and industries under the Barcelona Global beacon, the event also showcased the results of the International Professional Talent Monitor 2013 survey that was conducted over the last 2 months. The anonymous survey was completed by 326 respondents, all of whom were born outside of Spain. The objective was to rate the city of Barcelona based on the experiences we have been through in the subjects of Work, Business, and Life since arriving here.
Not surprisingly, Barcelona ranked extremely well in the subjects Read more