Antler is an early-stage enterprise capital agency which might additionally be described as a “firm builder.”It helps founders construct complementary co-founding groups, offers help with deep enterprise mannequin validation and a worldwide platform for scaling their companies. Up to now, Antler has invested in and helped construct over 250 corporations. Of those corporations, 40% have no less than one feminine co-founder, and the founders signify greater than 70 nationalities.
Based in 2017 by serial entrepreneur, Marcus Grimeland, and a staff of skilled entrepreneurs, traders, and firm builders worldwide, Antler has raised greater than $75 million to assist entrepreneurs unfold throughout 9 of the world’s main entrepreneurial hubs. They embrace Amsterdam, Berlin, London, Nairobi, New York, Oslo, Singapore, Stockholm and Sydney.
Antler’s solely workplace in Africa is in Nairobi, and it’s run and led by ladies.
Marie Nielsen,founding father of a paper recycling firm in Ethiopia referred to as Penda Paper Recycling, is a accomplice on the agency. She was an affiliate accomplice at Mckinsey & Firm liable for opening their Addis Ababa workplace.Melalite Ayenewis the agency’s tech accomplice. Her prior expertise contains Oracle, Bain & Firm, and Princeton Consultants.Selam Kebede is the agency’s director and leads operations. Earlier than becoming a member of Antler, she labored for a few VCs and entrepreneurship help organizations.
Turning professionals to founders
Just like different places around the globe, Antler East Africa runs two cohorts in a yr. The agency is specific about adopting a people-first strategy, and so they deliver collectively professionals with, on common, 10 years of expertise of their respective industries. These professionals who grow to be founders ideate, iterate and create options usually primarily based on insights they’ve gathered or issues noticed through the course of their previous skilled expertise of their respective industries. After six months of incubation, the agency invests within the groups they may also help additional. Sometimes within the pre-seed stage, Antler cuts $100,000 checks for a 20% fairness in every chosen staff.
“Our course of could be very hands-on; by working with the co-founders over a number of months, we get the chance to assist form the enterprise fashions and carry out intensive due diligence earlier than investing,” Nielsen mentioned to TechCrunch.
The due diligence Nielsen talks about is supported by the worldwide Antler platform, the place they pull upon its community of greater than 400 specialists throughout applied sciences and industries. After the pre-seed investments, Antler East Africa claims to proceed to help the groups as they hit the bottom operating and begin elevating funds from follow-on traders.
Ayenew provides that the agency can also be exploring the chance to put money into pre-existing, early-stage startups developed outdoors its program, however early sufficient for them to come back in and nonetheless present worth as well as to the financial funding.
On condition that Nairobi is Antler’s solely workplace in Africa, the staff seems to be out for founders engaged on pan-African issues and options. It has attracted founders from greater than 15 African international locations, which performs a big position in sustaining its cohorts’ outlook to be organically pan-African.
Up to now, Antler East Africa has invested in a broad vary of expertise corporations within the B2B, B2C and direct-to-consumer house, starting from rising sectors like robotics and AI to sectors reminiscent of well being tech, fintech, and proptech. From its final two cohorts, Antler East Africa has invested in six startups. They embrace:
Cooked, a subscription-based meal equipment supplier, helps shoppers seek for, store, and prepare dinner meals at house higher. Cooked operates with weekly and month-to-month subscriptions and delivers merchandise house to its prospects on pre-agreed days of the week. The founders have greater than 20 years of expertise in finance, meals, and eating places industries between themselves.
UNCOVER claims to be constructing the continent’s most trusted skincare model and content material platform by partnering with prime skincare labs in Korea. The corporate carried out a skincare survey with responses from 1,000 Kenyan ladies and claims the info obtained will assist develop viral information platforms and efficient custom-made merchandise.
Having spent its early days in FMCG, and notably with small merchants,ChapChapGo recognized that the shortage of easy and inexpensive instruments tailor-made to the native context was a significant problem for Kenyan companies to undertake e-commerce. ChapChapGo permits companies to transact on-line in a couple of minutes with easy invoicing, automated reconciliation, and quicker M-PESA checkouts.
Anyi Well being needs to enhance entry to monetary help for major healthcare seekers. In Nigeria and lots of different African international locations, sufferers unable to pay their hospital payments are detained within the hospital or left untreated. Anyi Well being goals to unravel this by means of a mobile-based point-of-need credit score facility, the place sufferers can apply for credit score instantly on the hospital. The corporate simply began its MVP pilot with three hospitals in Lagos, Nigeria and is seeking to elevate a $300okay seed spherical primarily based on pilot proof of idea.
AIFluence is an AI-driven influencer advertising platform. Based by promoting veterans, AIfluence permits manufacturers in Africa to make a greater resolution when launching, managing and evaluating their influencer advertising campaigns. The corporate has signed buyer contracts value greater than $600,000 with main worldwide and African corporations, together with Sony and Safaricom.
Digiduka positions itself because the digital service answer for Kenya’s money financial system. Its thesis is that cost options in Africa have two issues shutting out hundreds of thousands of potential customers. One is excessive transaction charges, ranging as excessive as 9% per transaction, and the opposite, inconvenient cost modes. With the CEO and CTO having between themselves over 15 years of expertise working with main African telcos and as a technical lead for numerous startups, they goal to construct the unified digital providers answer of selection for each shoppers and smaller retailers in Kenya.
Antler East Africa’s subsequent cohort is in April, and Kebede says by bringing good and skilled folks collectively to create excellent companies in Africa, they hope that Antler “will assist foster organizations that change the way in which folks assume, are sustainable and revolutionary in addition to encourage different folks to understand their very own enterprise objectives.”