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Creating and growing a startup as well as entering a new market for IT products requires investment support. In today's article we’ll share some useful sites for finding startup investment, look into some of the features of fundraising, and share where and how best to find an investor.
We talk to startups and investors, you get the value.
Investors are obsessed with TAM (Total Addressable Market). They want to invest in startups that can grow, and an important part of that is a large market where they can gain market share from competitors, as well as a fast-growing market where they can attract new customers, or ideally both. It is necessary to clearly communicate such data when talking to an investor.
The main thing an investor wants to understand is how much the startup has spent to get to where it is today, and where it can get tomorrow with more investment.
Creating digital startups stands at the intersection of fundamental industry knowledge and technologies. It requires not only experience and knowledge of the technical aspects of development, but also the involvement of niche professionals in the creation of such startups. Thanks to the industry focus of accelerators, they not only provide an opportunity to conduct a Proof Of Concept of a startup in collaboration with global corporations, but also help to acquire useful connections among investors. Besides, accelerators mean consulting hours with leading industry experts, demo days and meetups.
On average, startup accelerators open 1 or 2 calls to take part in the program. You submit an application on the website and then go through the selection stages.
HEALTH HUB VIENNA is a platform for open innovation in healthcare, where top pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers, private and public players, healthcare providers and investment funds together develop бывают new, holistic and patient-centered solutions.
Startupbootcamp Digital Health Berlin is a 3-month program, whose activities are supported by leading health organizations, including Sanofi, Munich Re, Berlin Institute of Health, Vilua and Deutsche Apotheker.
Warszawski Akcelerator Technologiczny focuses on startups in the life sciences, energy and Internet of things. The program lasts 5 months. The first step is Sprint Workshop for all teams. The next stage is Matchmaking, during which each company individually selects mentors according to their business needs.
Warsaw Booster is a support program for young startups (no more than 3 years old) working in the field of AI, IoT, AR and Big Data. One of the strengths of the program is attracting corporations, which can be useful when growing a startup.
MIT Enterprise Forum CEE is an acceleration program for startups from Central and Eastern Europe (including outside of it) that have innovative solutions in one of the following areas: FinTech, InsurTech, Energy, Smart Buildings, Industry 4.0, HealthTech, MedTech, Digital Health, MarTech, Sustainability and Waste Management. During the program, startups can take advantage of useful opportunities: workshops; cooperation with mentors; collaboration with program partners for pilot implementation and validating solutions; access to partners and investors from the USA.
#space3ac is an accelerator based in Gdansk that connects innovative startups with large companies looking for solutions in the areas of Smart Cities, bioeconomy and the space sector. Program participants have the opportunity to receive non-refundable financial support of up to PLN 200,000.
Huge Thing Accelerator is an acceleration program organized in partnership with Google for Startups aimed at startups from Central and Eastern Europe with MVPs in education, medicine, and sustainable development. The goal of the program is to test business ideas and prepare startups for their first investment round.
Accelpoint is an accelerator that has been operating in Central and Eastern Europe since 2018, collaborating with top business mentors and helping in the search for venture capital financing in Poland and abroad. Accelpoint focuses primarily on projects from FinTech, MedTech and CleanTech.
BRINC is a 3-month intensive acceleration program, which ends with a demo day, during which startups present their projects to investors. The accelerator focuses on projects from InsurTech, PropTech, Smart Cities, FinTech, MedTech and CleanTech.
Arkley is an acceleration program for projects from Connected Hardware, Drones & Robotics, FoodTech, Energy & Industrial, IoT. A useful feature of the accelerator is the partner network in China, which allows you to provide top sales and distribution channels for your startups. Startups have the opportunity to receive from $ 50,000 to $ 150,000 in investments.
EIT Digital is an accelerator that focuses on projects in the areas of Smart Cities, Digital Wellbeing, MedTech and FinTech and helps in finding investments in the amount of € 2 — € 20 million.
edulab.io is an EdTec accelerator that provides mentoring and investment assistance to startups.
hub:raum is a Deutsche Telekom’s technology accelerator, bringing together early stage startups and leading European telecommunications companies. Startups benefit from seed investments, co-innovation programs, and the knowledge and expertise of a telecommunications company.
The Family is a 6-week acceleration program for startups from MedTech, FinTech and EdTech, helping in finding investments.
Axel Springer Plug and Play is a 100-day acceleration program that provides startups with funding and mentoring support. Even after the 100-day program, the accelerator continues to support startups and help entrepreneurs grow their companies.
Startup Hub Poland is an acceleration program that attracts innovative projects to Poland. This is an initiative of the city of Warsaw, which decided to become the first city in Poland to create a municipal accelerator intended not only for Polish projects, but also for projects from all over Central and Eastern Europe.
Buildit is a Baltic region accelerator specializing in HardWare and IoT projects. This platform offers a 3-month product and business development program, as well as a follow-up one-to-one mentoring program for up to 2 years.
Startup Wise Guys is an acceleration program for early stage SaaS, FinTech and Cybersecurity startups.
WINNO is a tech accelerator in Russia that offers an acceleration program for projects in MedTech, BioTech, IoT, VR and AI.
A corporate accelerator is a business accelerator run by a large company. Corporate accelerators can be external and internal. In external ones teams from the open market are attracted to participate in external corporate accelerators, and in the second case, employees of a corporate company participate in the accelerator to develop and search for useful ideas within the company.
Thanks to corporate accelerators, startups can understand how business processes function within the company, as well as what startups lack for growth and development. In the accelerator, they can get professional consulting support and industry expertise, acquire new connections in the market, and leverage useful and top technologies of the corporation itself.
The principle is the same as in a regular startup accelerator: submit an application on the accelerator website → go through an interview with an accelerator representative → pitch at the face-to-face selection.
Campus Europe Accelerator — Google for Startups is a program that helps startups with a growing team (more than 15 people) and an existing product or service develop. The program aims to build a sustainable startup community in Central and Eastern Europe. The third campus of the accelerator is located in Warsaw.
G4A is a German acceleration program led by pharmaceutical giant Bayer that was launched in Berlin in 2013 to fund mobile healthcare applications. G4A is committed to helping digital health startups seeking funding and partnerships. The Bayer G4A program has created an extensive digital health partnership network with more than 150 companies.
JLABS is a corporate accelerator of Johnson & Johnson Innovation, an innovative ecosystem that enables startups from different healthcare niches, including pharmaceuticals, medical devices and medical technology to create technology products and accelerate the search for life-saving and beneficial solutions for patients. The JLABS Accelerator provides an optimal environment for growing startups by streamlining research, development, and new therapies for vital healthcare industries.
mAccelerator.vc is a corporate accelerator based on mBank, the world’s leading digital bank with over 5 million customers, focused primarily on Late Seed and Series A investments in fintech startups with cutting edge technology solutions that can have a powerful impact on the digital economy. mAccelerator.vc provides access to smart money, imparting experience and insight to entrepreneurs in innovation, market analysis, business development, marketing and branding.
MTS StartUp Hub is a corporate accelerator based on MTS for startups with a focus on 5G, FinTech, AI, Computer Vision and environmental innovations.
The Investors Club is an association of private investors and business angels who invest in early stage startups. Often, in investor clubs, several investors invest in a startup at once.
Online platforms such as websites and social media pages are increasingly becoming active networking platforms for finding private investors and business angels, where one can submit an application or text founders in social media (for example, Angel Investment Network).
Here are a few sites:
Yellow Rockets is one of the largest investor clubs focusing on startups at the Pre-seed and Seed stages, working in the field of industrial automation and robotization in such technological areas as AI, Big Data, SaaS, 5G.
InvestClub.vc is an investor club focusing on software startups in Eastern Europe at the Pre-seed and Seed stage with a global market and focus on GameDev, ChatBot, Marketplace, FinTech, MedTech, EdTech, SaaS, AI.
Ainot is a network of business angels, which was created to support the youngest companies at an early stage of investment and during their dynamic growth. Ainot invests up to € 200,000 in one project.
ceeban (Central & Eastern Europe Business Angel Network) is the largest business angel network in Central and Eastern Europe investing in early stage startups with a focus on FinTech, BioTech and a working MVP model. A typical investment in one trade is € 50,000 — € 1 million.
COBIN Angels is a club of individual investors (business angels), founded in Warsaw in 2015, which is included in the top Poland BUSINESS ANGEL OF THE YEAR 2020. COBIN Angels is engaged in developing companies with high growth potential, with a particular focus on projects from the tech sector. Since 2020, the first specialized investor community has been created within the Warsaw Innovation Campus in cooperation with the Cambridge Innovation Center.
Venture funding is considered to be the most popular source of funding for startups and the top choice of founders. In the venture capital market, there is a huge number of industry funds specializing in a specific niche, which is useful for startups in terms of greater chances of getting the fund interested in their decision. Besides, the industry fund often has a community of experts, which then gives the startup mentoring assistance and expertise.
The first thing that you have to do is send a pitch and a cover letter to the mail indicated on the foundation’s website, or fill out an application in the form on the website. Second, using the specified contact information on the website, find fund managers in social networks and formulate information about the startup and the necessary funding for them very clearly and concisely.
Below is a list of the sites of the most popular venture capital funds:
RST Ventures for Earth is a fund investing in IoT, AI, robotics and solutions for a cleaner environment at Pre-seed and Seed stages with an average investment check of € 250,000 — € 1 million.
Alfabeat is a Pre-seed and Seed stages fund for enterprise software companies from Central and Eastern Europe.
Arkley offers startups up to $ 1 million with a focus on DeepTech in Europe.
Black Swan is a venture capital fund investing in high-tech startups in the areas of FinTech, ICT, e-Commerce, EdTech, FashionTech, MedTech and BioTech.
BVALUE is a fund of Pre-seed and Seed stages in the areas of e-Commerce, IoT, Things, Marketing and SaaS.
CorvusVentures is a venture capital fund investing in the Pre-seed and Seed stages, targeting startups from Central and Eastern Europe.
Data Ventures is an early stage venture capital firm specializing in data mining technologies for b2b. The fund focuses on FinTech, DevTools, SaaS, AI, blockchain and Big Data technologies.
EEC Ventures is a fund investing in startups specializing in IoT, AI, blockchain and Big Data technologies from Central and Eastern Europe.
Experior Venture Fund is a venture capital fund investing in startups at an early stage and at the stage of growth in Poland. EVF invests between € 200,000 — € 3 million in fast-growing innovative companies that drive transformational change in their industries.
KnowledgeHub is a venture capital fund that invests in modern technological solutions in the early stages of development. KnowledgeHub investment areas include MarTech, FinTech, MedTech and Industry 4.0.
Kogito Ventures is a venture fund focused on startups from Central and Eastern Europe and investing in rounds ranging from Pre-seed to Series A.
MOC (Market One Capital) is a venture capital fund investing in marketplace startups with an average investment check of € 250,000 — € 1.5 million.
Montis Capital is a fund specializing in industry 4.0, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, biomedical technologies with an investment check of € 1.5 — € 5 million
SMOK Ventures is a Polish-American venture fund focused on GameDev and investing up to $ 1 million.
Next Road is a Pre-seed and Seed stage venture fund specializing in startups from Central and Eastern Europe with a focus on ICT, Big Data, SaaS, FinTech, Industry 4.0 with an average investment check of up to € 1 million.
PIBiR is a Pre-seed and Seed stages fund specializing in ICT, Big Data, AI and robotics.
Starfinder Seed Fund is a venture fund specializing in innovative technology startups from Poland, Central and Eastern Europe and the USA with a focus on BioTech, MedTech and ICT.
Tar Heel Capital Pathfinder is a Venture fund for Pre-seed, Seed and round A, specializing in startups from Central and Eastern Europe with a focus on Big Data, FinTech and SaaS.
TDJ Pitango Ventures is a venture fund specializing in startups in Big Data, AI, Medical Devices, Digital Health, SaaS, Mobile Technology, Digital Media, IoT. Average investment checks are $ 100,000 — $ 1 million.
ValueTech Seed invests in projects aimed at the market at the Pre-seed and Seed stages. Main niches are ICT, IoT, BioTech and MedTech.
BLDG Venture is a venture fund specializing in R&D startups at the stage of industrial research.
Cherry VC is a Pre-seed and Seed stages fund with an average investment check of € 300,000 — € 3 million.
Evig Alfa is a Polish venture fund specializing in FinTech, MedTech and CleanTech projects at the Pre-seed and Seed stages.
Lemonade Stand is a venture capital fund investing in early stage technology startups in the Baltic and Eastern European countries. Average investment is € 25,000 — € 300,000.
Tera Ventures is an Estonian venture capital firm investing in global digital startups at an early stage.
Polish Venture Fund is a Polish venture capital fund investing in R&D projects in the field of medical technology.
SATUS Starter is a Polish venture capital fund investing in high-tech startups in the areas of AI, Big Data, SaaS, AR, VR, Industry 4.0, FinTech, Blockchain, Cybersecurity and Marketplace.
Revo Capital is a venture fund investing b2b and b2c startups in Turkey, Eastern Europe and the Baltic countries in the areas of AI, Big Data, FinTech, MedTech.
LT CAPITAL is a venture fund investing in high-tech startups in the areas of ICT, IoT, AI, Big Data, Marketplace and SaaS.
Black Pearls VC is a pre-seed and Seed stages fund investing in leading technology startups from Northern and Central Europe.