Select Page
Largest Series A in Hungarian Startup History

Largest Series A in Hungarian Startup History

The Story of SEON’s €10M Series A Funding

SEON secured its first significant round of venture capital financing, thanks to the team at Creandum.

The venture capital firm is known for backing the biggest Euro tech success stories such as SpotifyKlarna, and Bolt. Angels joining Series A also include founders of N26SumUpTideOnfido, and ComplyAdvantage as well as the ex-CPO of iZettle and ex-CFO of Revolut.

Largest Series A in Hungarian Startup History

Setting a new record for Hungarian companies, this €10M Series A proves that CEE startups are gaining visibility on the world stage. Companies like UIPath, Brainly, and Vinted are also brandishing the flag for the region, demonstrating that it’s possible to attract international attention even when your headquarters aren’t based in a traditional startup hub.

But of course, it all starts with the quality of the product.

Strong Risk Tech as a Cornerstone

From its earliest incarnation, SEON was always about strong technology. When Tamas and Bence couldn’t find a good risk startup to protect their crypto exchange from fraudsters, they decided to build it themselves.

The products, in short, were designed as an antidote to legacy risk companies, whose expensive integrations and outdated data analysis tools did not meet the needs of small businesses. They wanted more agile tools, with better results and faster implementation.

It turns out SEON and its early adopters weren’t the only ones interested. Innovative anti-fraud technology is increasingly valued by big companies too. Air France, Avis, and Patreon are now all big fans

Focusing on the Next Steps

Closing a funding round feels both like a victory and a challenge. The stakes get higher. Business decisions become more impactful. Luckily, SEON is already a sustainable startup. But it doesn’t mean they plan on resting on our laurels.

SEON has a long-term game plan and a big mission: to eradicate online fraud.

This is only possible thanks to all the people at the startup who work hard every day to make it happen. Growing the team, enabling their growth and that of their products to benefit customers is exactly what this investment is all about.

Glovo raises €450M in Series F funding round led by Lugard Road Capital and Luxor Capital Group

Glovo raises €450M in Series F funding round led by Lugard Road Capital and Luxor Capital Group

Glovo, one of the world’s leading multi-category delivery players, today announced that it has raised €450M ($530M) in its Series F funding round led by New York-based investment managers Lugard Road Capital and the Luxor Capital Group.

The round also saw participation from returning investors including Delivery Hero, Drake Enterprises, and GP Bullhound, and reflects both the significant growth potential in the online delivery sector and the strong demand from existing shareholders to invest in the company.

“We’re thrilled to have the continued backing of Luxor Capital Group and all of our existing investors. Over the last few months, we’ve moved very, very quickly but our vision remains unchanged. This investment will allow us to double-down in our core markets, accelerate our leadership position in places where we are already very strong, and continue to expand our excellent Q-Commerce division, as well as bring new innovations to our unique multi-category offering to extend more choice to our customers.” Said, Oscar Pierre, Co-founder, and CEO of Glovo.

Following this latest funding round, the largest in history for a Spanish startup, Glovo will invest in expanding its footprint in the 20 markets in which it currently operates. The company will also focus on growing its newly-launched Q-Commerce division, which forms a significant part of its strategic commitment to multi-category deliveries in these markets.

Earlier this year Glovo announced a €100M partnership with Swiss-based real estate firm Stoneweg to grow its network of dark stores and the hiring of new CTO, Narek Verdian, who recently served as vice-president of engineering at American Express. Verdian will oversee the expansion of the engineering team from 300 to 500 at Glovo’s Barcelona headquarters and its tech hubs in Madrid and Warsaw.

Q-Commerce division excels in “ultra-fast” delivery

The focus of the funding for Glovo will center around its Q-Commerce division and deepening its unique multi-category offerings in all the markets in which it operates. The company, which has a strong base of more than 10 million users and a marketplace of premier partners, is paying particular attention to growing its groceries and retail categories through key local partnerships. In its biggest cities, it’s already able to provide ultra-fast last-mile delivery within 10 minutes through its network of dark stores, as the company anticipates a permanent shift in consumer habits towards same-day and instant delivery.

More focus on groceries and partnerships with leading retailers

To spur on the growth of its groceries category, Glovo will continue to seek strategic partnerships similar to its deals with supermarkets such as Carrefour, Continente, and Kaufland, while also investing in its own infrastructure and fulfillment centers. The company currently operates dark stores in cities including Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon and Milan, and will be opening similar stores in Valencia, Rome, Porto, and Bucharest, among others. The company aims to have 200 dark stores by the end of 2021.

Jonathan Green, Founder and Portfolio Manager at Lugard Road Capital, said: “Our investment in Glovo reflects our commitment to a company and leadership team that continues to innovate and disrupt in the on-demand delivery space.  As a long-term investor in Glovo, we are excited to watch the company continue to delight its customers through its unique multi-category offering, amidst an enormous market opportunity in both existing and new geographies.”

About Glovo 

Glovo is a pioneering multi-category delivery app and one of the world’s leading delivery platforms. Founded in Barcelona in 2015, it operates in Southern Europe and EEMEA. The app connects users with restaurants, grocery chains, pharmacies, and retail stores, and also includes an “anything” category that allows users to order whatever they want in their city.

About Lugard Road Capital

Lugard Road Capital is a multi-billion dollar global investment fund primarily focused on public and private companies in the Internet, software, consumer, and technology sectors.

About Luxor Capital Group

Luxor Capital Group, LP (“Luxor”) is a multi-billion dollar investment fund that was founded in 2002.  Applying a bottom-up, fundamental approach, Luxor takes a long-term view towards investing and often works closely with the management teams of their portfolio companies.

Digital-First Tylko Raises €22 Million in Series C as Part of Its Commitment to Set New Standards in the Furniture Industry

Digital-First Tylko Raises €22 Million in Series C as Part of Its Commitment to Set New Standards in the Furniture Industry

Including Series C funding, the innovative start-up has raised €33 million since its inception in 2015. The company will more than double its 140-strong team of parametric designers, developers, researchers, production specialists, and marketing experts to continue to push the boundaries of furniture design and technology.

Tylko, the Polish digital-first furniture company, announced today the close of a €22 million Series C round of funding led by Israel-based Pitango Ventures and Finnish Evli Growth Partners. Since its creation in 2015, Tylko has served almost 60,000 satisfied customers and shows no signs of slowing down. The €22m investment follows a strong year for Tylko, with its unique approach to furniture design generating a 132% increase in sales in 2020 in comparison to previous years.

The new investment shows confidence in Tylko’s offering of premium design coupled with a user experience that puts the customer in control. The brand’s unique business model is premised on its belief that through investment in innovation and cutting-edge technology, the furniture industry can be swayed from ‘fast furniture’ towards durable, user-first products. By embedding conscious consumption in everything it makes, Tylko incorporates sustainability into high-quality and well-designed products. 

Angel investors in this Series C round include Brian Walker, former CEO of furniture giant Herman Miller, who had been advising Tylko prior to his investment, and Mark Williamson, COO of renowned US-based online classes platform MasterClass. As part of this investment, Rami Kalish from Pitango Ventures, Mikko Kuitunen from Evli Growth Partners and Brian Walker will join the company’s Supervisory Board. 

A future-proof business model

Tylko has seen sales during the pandemic rise by 132%, as its future-proof business model adopts an online-only, direct-to-consumer (D2C) and made-to-order approach. Individually designed by the customer from home, based on the principles of parametric design, each item is an individual solution. From each order Tylko’s unique proprietary software automates the manufacturing process for its production partners: a directly scalable process.

These advantages have driven the €33 million in funding which Tylko has raised to date. 

Tylko will use the Series C capital to find the next generation of creators and talent who will help to drive the company’s mission and vision to make ever-better products through industry-leading technology and a personalised approach to design.

Mikko Kuitunen, Growth Partner at Evli Growth Partners, Founder and CEO of Vincit. “We are impressed by Tylko’s exceptional growth and ability to scale the company as a market leader, offering new, customized solutions within the furniture market. Tylko’s strong impact-driven vision and made-to-order business model drives the market’s transition towards more sustainable solutions. By optimizing material use, production efficiency and offering customers unique, long-lasting design we believe Tylko is positioned at the forefront of such a transition.”

€36m in sales for Tylko during the pandemic

The successful Series C funding round comes off the back of a strong year for Tylko. With the pandemic transforming homes into workplaces, schools and beyond, our interiors have never been more important. Tylko’s unique offering – environmentally conscious, customizable, premium design – has struck a chord with taste-conscious and environmentally minded consumers alike.

In 2020, during the first lockdown, the company saw a 40% MOM growth in trade, with sales from June to August tripling compared to the same time period in 2019. Last year alone, Tylko served over 30,000 satisfied customers.

The furniture market is one of the largest consumer categories. Its online penetration was experiencing a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 14% before the Covid-19 pandemic, creating market potential in the future. The total furniture market size in Europe and US in 2020 was €341.1 bn. Tylko’s sales have doubled every year since 2015, with 2020 seeing €36m revenue and profitability in Q4.

Rami Kalish, Managing Partner and Co-Founder at Pitango “Tylko has a huge vision to disrupt the furniture industry that has “frozen in time” with its outstanding technology and unwavering commitment to protect Mother Earth. We believe in Tylko because its outstanding founding team excels in all the business parameters of scale, growth and customer satisfaction, while maintaining excellence in executing an inspiring ESG and sustainability vision.”

Create customer value where sustainability and durability are a norm

Tylko is committed to developing contemporary products that positively influence people’s lives whilst preventing negative effects on the planet. The furniture industry contributes heavily to the climate crisis: it is responsible for over a billion trees falling every year, alongside 670 thousand tonnes of landfill in the UK and 10 million tons in the US. Despite the increasing importance of climate, this trend continues to accelerate.

Jacek Majewski, Co-Founder, Co-CEO Tylko, commented on the planned expansion: “Tylko’s vision has always been about putting the user experience first, in order to create a product that is perfectly designed, high-quality and sustainable. We believe that driving sustainability into this huge industry can only be done by creating highly desirable products that will win over customers by their features rather than certificates.”

Constant product rotations and disposable furniture have become the norm across the entire industry, with badly sourced materials compounding the issue. Tylko wants to transform this behaviour with a product that is perfectly adjusted to the individual’s space and needs, is easy to assemble and disassemble, and provides a hassle-free product experience. Every item is a durable, individual solution, thereby requiring less consumption and so helping the planet.

As part of the €22 million investment, Tylko will continue to invest in:

  • Its supply chain, to develop and create new sustainable and durable materials suitable for the furniture industry.
  • Improved delivery, packaging and logistics processes to ensure the most efficient supply chain optimisation.
  • An expanded network of collaborators (artists, designers, brands) to reach more people.
  • Technologies that improve Tylko’s customer experience (AR, Space Recognition, Parametric Design tools).

Tylko’s ambitious investment in people 

From its founding in 2015, Tylko began to put together a workplace where employees have the freedom to create, develop and contribute towards the industry. 2021 offers an enormous opportunity to rapidly expand its team which already includes 140 specialists, investing in the best talent in the industry. 

Mikołaj Molenda, Co-Founder, Co-CEO Tylko, added: “Right now, we need to invest in the best people in the industry to work with us and achieve Tylko’s mission – to help us build the value for customers and shape the future of the furniture industry. To change our outlook on our home and interior decisions we make. What we offer is a freedom to think, do, change and evolve. Come and join us as we work on innovative solutions for people and the planet.”

Global expansion and new products 

Additionally, the new funding will support Tylko’s further expansion into markets beyond Europe as well as the launch of new product categories. Currently, Tylko’s portfolio consists of the original Type01 in Plywood and Veneer and its successor the Type02, two product families in which customers can configure anything from a bookcase to a shoe rack to a TV stand. 

In late 2020, Tylko introduced a new product category, with a new version of the configurator and extra features. This illustrates how easily Tylko can expand its product portfolio: simply with further software upgrades, a whole new product family can be made. Further product development in this way is planned for 2021.

Help Fellow Travelers

Help Fellow Travelers

Entrepreneurs often have so many things to do for their company, that it may seem counter-intuitive to help out or even mentor another startup. However, mentoring could be useful and should be encouraged. In this post, Jeff Wald shares the reasons why he decided to mentor another startup founder who was younger.

Jeff Wald is Co-Founder and President of Work Market, the leading enterprise-class platform for the management of contract and freelance talent. The article “Why I Mentor” originally appeared on The Huffington Post. It has been republished below with permission.

A startup founder recently asked me a simple, yet startling, question during our monthly meetings. We have been working together for nearly two years, and as with all startups she has had her ups and downs.

We have had all manner of conversations over the years and yet, in this one instance, her simple question floored me – “When I asked if you would be my mentor, why did you say yes?”

The first thing that surprised me was that she said “mentor” and not “adviser.” I have the pleasure of advising many companies. This means that I meet with them every now and again to offer some thoughts on a discrete problem, or I make an introduction or two. However, my relationship here was different. I was more than an adviser. I was a mentor to her. We meet once a month, and I know a tremendous amount about her business, where she has been and where she hopes to go. I am proud to be her mentor, so I wanted to provide an honest answer.

After collecting myself, I explained that there were three reasons why I said yes‎, in no particular order of importance:

She was the first to ask.
Mentoring helps reinforce the lessons I’m learning from my company. I believe we have an obligation to help fellow travelers.

1. She Was The First To Ask. 
She and I met at The Founders Institute (FI), an organization where I have been teaching for some years. The FI is the world’s largest entrepreneur training and startup launch program with chapters across 50 countries. In each chapter “experienced” founders teach a series of classes to aspiring founders.
Many of the students I have taught over the years will email and ask if they can discuss their businesses. I am always happy to help, so‎ I’ll meet with them and offer candid feedback on their ideas. These aspiring founders frequently end our time together by asking to return when their plans have progressed. I would always say yes, but few have ever returned. Some never make any progress; some don’t like the very direct feedback I am prone to give; some presumably just forget to follow up. So when asked why I agreed to mentor her, part of the answer was simply that she asked. I had time, and she asked, so I said yes. If someone had asked before her, then I really would not have had the time.

2. Mentoring Helps Reinforce The Lessons I am Learning at My Own Company. 

I have learned great many things on my entrepreneurial journey at Work Market: mistakes I hopefully won’t repeat, important lessons to refer back to and valuable insights from colleagues. Mentoring this founder and hearing about her own struggles and breakthroughs has forced me to reflect on when we were at a similar stage as a company. Offering her advice and describing the opportunities we missed (we all miss many) helps to codify these hard-won lessons and prepares me for my next adventure.

3. We Have An Obligation To Help Fellow Travelers. 

I have walked this tumultuous, crazy, startup path three times. It’s one of the hardest journeys you will ever take. It will test limits you never knew you had and then demand you to push beyond them. So, when the journey ends, regardless of the outcome, you have gained invaluable experience. Pass it along. I can promise you this: whatever outcome you had, you didn’t get there alone. You had co-founders, colleagues, investors, mentors, advisers, customers, and, of course, friends and family that all helped in sometimes small, but many times, immeasurable ways. You owe it to them, as well as to yourself, to help others who are embarking upon that similar difficult path. No one can make it alone.

If you have made it to the end of a startup journey, and if you have the time, stretch out your hand and help the next traveler. They will be grateful, and you will greatly benefit as well. And in the meantime, check out what Beatriz and her team at DADA have built.