Decoding the DNA of a Successful Startup Founder
,,It's not enough for a startup founder to know his or her field. They must have perfect business instincts and a mature personality" says Michal Ciffra, Partner at DEPO Ventures.
DEPO insider: Jan Pecník and his ride toward a bike business
The Netherlands and bicycles simply belong together. There are about one and a half times more bicycles than people in the land of tulips, and the infrastructure is extensive. Cities are welcoming to cyclists; therefore, everyone sees bicycles as a natural means of transport. But many people who come to the country for the first time (and not only them) find it difficult to find a suitable machine. Moreover, bikes are stolen quite a lot. Jan Pecník, who came to the Netherlands a few years ago as a student, also encountered exactly these problems. He wanted to put things in order. First, he started building a database of bikes and their owners. The aim was to easily identify the owner of a stolen bike. Or a badly parked bicycle that the technical services had taken to a ‘salvage’ parking lot. Later, he built an online marketplace around the database, where you can sell a bike at the click of a button.
DEPO Ventures invests in data automation. Swedish-Czech startup Forloop raised 875k euros.
No successful company today can do without rapid adaptation to the constantly changing market conditions. Finding out the behavior of the target group, new trends, and competitors, all of this can be crucial for the further development of a company. The problem with data is that its processing is often very slow, difficult, and most importantly manual. In addition, many companies do not use this additional data at all and rely only on their internal data. To handle this problem, the Czech-Swedish startup Forloop.ai has created a platform to automate work with external data, which has been proven to speed up the work of data analysts while generally saving time and resources. The startup has now raised around 875 thousand EUR from Czech and foreign investors, including the angel fund DEPO Ventures. The funding will be used to improve the product, grow the number of users and expand into the US.
The Bunch app helps you become a better leader. Investing in it was a no-brainer.
Companies are spending billions of euros on training their employees. However, numerous classes and workshops often tend to be inefficient for many professionals. Bunch is a new tool, helping employees in a way that in-person classes and workshops could from a certain perspective never match. The app is an AI-powered pocket coach, which helps people to become better members of their respective workspace every single day. Its main specialty is to create new leaders and upgrade the skills of the already leading. This unique startup as of now managed to acquire 2.2 million euros. The most recent investment round was backed by the forefront of the European investment funds, among them the angel investor company DEPO Ventures.
The construction industry is yesterday’s news. DEPO invested in its digitization.
When a building is being designed, a massive pile of data is an inevitable outcome. Only the gathering and analysis of this data takes an extensive amount of time. Czech startup Digital Transformation Systems (DTS) aims to make this tedious process easier for their customers working in industries such as construction and engineering. The way how DTS accomplishes this is by shifting to the building’s digital information system based on the BIM (Building Information Modeling), which in a short amount of time is going to be mandatory to use in the European Union. So far, BIM managed to get a hold of 14 million crowns from the investment funds DEPO Ventures, StartGuide, Lighthouse Ventures, and Czech Founders Fund. This funding is going to be used primarily for foreign expansion.
How not to fall victim to your own success
Managers in their fifties should not throw the towel in yet; startups are not just for young people. We are entering a period of fluid relations, headhunter Michal Vajskebr and startup investor Petr Šíma both agree.
Czech institutions should support Investor's education more. There is a huge potential
While in the Baltics it is quite obvious that the local investment environment is supported by the Chamber of Commerce and other important institutions, in the Czech Republic we can only dream about it. Why should not only our Chamber of Commerce, but also various unions or associations of small and medium-sized enterprises actively participate in the startup business?
Investing in tourist start-ups in the covid era: a dangerous lottery or a genius move?
When the first quarantine was announced I honestly expected that the company within our portfolio of companies - the SmartGuide travel platform - would go bankrupt within three weeks. But that didn't happen and during the fall we doubled our profits every month. What is happening in tourism and does it make sense to invest in it now? Read the interview with Michal Ciffra, partner DEPO Ventures.
From Czechia to Silicon Valley - the successful story of TATUM
Tatum, which aims to make it easier for companies to develop blockchain applications, celebrates a major Czech success in the mecca of startups. At the end of 2020, the company was accepted into the prestigious SkyDeck accelerator in Silicon Valley.
INTERVIEW: How to invest in startups during the COVID-19 era?
Grouport has invested in London's Beem, betting on mixed reality technology. An guess how? Full remotely. Read the Interview with Michal Ciffra, partner of the Grouport angel fund about how it went and some investors tips.