The Founders Fund was established in 2013 – And it works through the StartupLab community. Photo: StartupLab
As the startup scene in Norway is speeding up things in multiple levels, we’re getting more and more news coming in. Today, we’re happy to share the news that Founders Fund Norway – the most active angel fund in Norway – has announced five new investments in early stage startups with scalable products and global ambition.
Getting started and finding the funding and required support very early for your new project is not always easy. Who better to help you on your way going where you want to go than someone who has been down that road already. That’s why it’s super-important that we have ever-growing army of angel investors, persons who possess the industry knowledge and vast contact networks, not to mention their willingness to put their personal money where their mouth is. When you’re looking for smart money (that you should almost always do), which comes not just in a form of cash but also in a form of guidance and opening doors, I recommend to look and ask around for the experienced people from your industry who have jumped into angel investing. If you are able to get more than one angel joining in your pre-seed or seed round, your chances of success will increase dramatically. Angels really are a gift from the skies for the startup community, and we should treat them accordingly.
And remember – always – when you take external money in from an investor, it’s a promise to sell your company one day. Or at least a promise to allow the investors sell their shares at some point so they are able to get return on their investment. Hopefully they will invest the profits back to new startup projects. So be kind to your angels, you might end up being one yourself one day.
Founders Fund Norway
Founders Fund was established in 2013 by a group of successful Norwegian entrepreneurs who wanted to make the hard life of starting a business slightly easier. The founding partners include names such as Jon Von Tetzchner (Opera Software), Geir Førre (Chipcon & Energy Micro), Eilert Hanoa (Mamut & Kahoot), Erik Bakkejord (Stepstone & Intility), Karl Christian Agerup (Hugin, Northzone) among others. Their mission is to help ambitious talents to build successful global Norwegian startups, and their investments are made in scalable tech startups with a global market potential solving specific needs.
“When we started, the professional early stage investment community in Norway was non-existent. Since then we have had a very strong and growing deal flow in Norway, evaluating over 600 startups and ending up with investing into 17 very talented teams with ambitions to succeed on a global arena,” says Tor Bækkelund, partner at StartupLab, the managing company of Founders Fund.
Founders Fund also partners with the Nordic investment community as well as providing access to the top tier international venture capital firms. Photo: StartupLab
“Our fund size is 30 MNOK (3,5 MUSD) and we invest in the range of USD 100K to 300K, typically taking 5-15% equity in the company. The approach is early entry and early exit, usually at seed or series A round. Our focus is primarily on technology and research related projects.” Bækkelund continues.
Here are the five new investments made by Founders Fund:
Sharemy3D allows you to share your 3D models online in high quality without any plug-ins and at low cost. They already work with the Viking Ship Museum and are in negotiations with other global players. Check out their demo gallery to get the idea. You can embed the creations on your website.
Reach Savings develops a low cost, hassle free way to save money. Their solution allows families to focus on savings in their daily life.
Byline.me develops a marketplace for content in the B2B market connecting publishers and journalists. They are currently in beta and aim to launch 2016.
Fronteer Solutions (in Norwegian only) has built a powerful and versatile portfolio optimization algorithm to solve complex mathematical problems. The company offers a quantitative and disciplined investment process that delivers improved and consistent returns at significantly lower costs than any competitors.
Haug (website not yet open) is developing exciting new electronic consumer product, a user-friendly digital notebook, set to launch in the second half of 2016.
The startups are all located at StartupLab in Oslo Science Park. We’ll need to visit there soon to check out what else is cooking under their wings.