Welcome Orchest – the latest Open Source company to emerge from Seedcamp


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

Orchest cofounders Yannick Perrenet and Rick Lamers

Earlier this year, we invested in Rick and Yannick, founders of Orchest, a new open source tool for creating data science pipelines. The new wave of open source companies is something we’ve been following closely at Seedcamp and is a subject area we recently delved into over on the podcast. Kyran, from our Investment team, adds:

“From e-commerce through to financial services, healthcare and logistics, data science is becoming ever more mission-critical for businesses. Yet data scientists spend much of their time and energy on repetitive, largely infrastructure-related engineering tasks as opposed to what should be their core focus: training models and deriving valuable insights from them.

When we first met Rick and Yannick, we were massively excited by their mission to unburden data scientists from these tasks. As data scientists and engineers themselves, they had great empathy for the particular pain points here; what’s more, in their previous projects like Grid Studio, they showed a canny ability to foster early developer interest around what they were building. This convinced us they were a particularly well-equipped team when it came to open source strategy, and we’re delighted to support them on their journey.”

We sat down with CEO and co-founder, Rick Lamers, to explore more about Orchest; from ideation to what the future of data science looks like and why they decided open source was key in developing this new tool. Over to you Rick!

Where did the inspiration for Orchest come from and what specific problems are you trying to solve?

The ideas for Orchest developed while we were still in University. We were taking Computer Science courses about machine learning, distributed systems, and statistics, while at the same time applying these topics as part-time data scientists for large companies.

We noticed how many distracting engineering challenges came up while trying to do real-world data projects, such as training predictive models and making results and data available to data scientist colleagues and clients.

Ultimately, we concluded that much of data scientists’ workload should be offloaded by tools that take care of the standard, mundane and technical tasks, which they currently have to do themselves. Today, data scientists are often left reinventing the wheel, and from what we observed in practice these weren’t the best wheels either.

Can you walk us through your backstory and how you met?

In August 2019 I open-sourced a project that I had been working on over the previous summer called Grid Studio. A browser based spreadsheet application with the ability to easily make use of the Python programming language. To my surprise the project grew in popularity rapidly, gaining over 5000 GitHub stars in the first 21 days. The growth prompted interest from investors such a16z, Redpoint Ventures, and other prominent technology investors about what was next with the project, even though behind the scenes I was already working on a new and different project which would form the basis of Orchest.

I then visited the Bay Area and spoke to multiple investors, including angel investor Anthony Goldbloom (founder of Kaggle) about our new plans to start Orchest. After getting many supportive and encouraging reactions, Yannick and I decided it was the right time to drop out of the 2nd year of our master’s to start working on Orchest full time.

We come from different backgrounds but ended up meeting at TU Delft. Yannick got his BSc. in Mathematics from TU Delft. However, he always had a knack for programming as he was teaching Python to company employees during his undergrad already.  Before coming to Delft, I studied at Erasmus University in Rotterdam. There I pursued a master’s in Entrepreneurship & New Business Venturing. I had been programming since age 14, and I knew I always wanted to deepen my CS fundamentals. After getting a University master degree I saw the opportunity to do a master in CS at TU Delft, at which I ended up getting accepted after having to plead my case for admittance due to coming from a, from their perspective, rather unusual background.

At TU Delft, Yannick and I often talked about math, CS, software, and startups. During our usual canteen lunch break we chatted about things we were up to, opportunities we saw and we generally started identifying areas of interest around software and starting a company.

Can you tell us more about your decision to open source the product and technology

If you look at the landscape of data science tools today, it’s predominantly open source. We believe that’s for a very good reason. Data science is firmly rooted in the scientific communities around the world. With the open mindset of academia and its proponents it makes sense that many great tools, libraries, and frameworks are made available open source. Many projects get their start in publicly funded research labs that are working on state of the art techniques. Take for example the terrific scikit-learn package. It was created by researchers in France working at Inria, a French research institute.

With Orchest, we wanted to respect the tradition of open source and we had great examples of companies that showed that you could combine open source software with a for-profit company. Influential examples are companies like Hashicorp, GitLab, Elastic, and Confluent. In addition, we are big fans of open source ourselves. From a developer perspective, it’s awesome to be able to quickly download and play with a piece of software to understand its use cases, design decisions and applicability. That’s the kind of experience we want to give to our users and customers too.

How have you geared up to officially launch Orchest to the world?

We prepared by first deciding which elements were critical to make sure we could launch. In the end, we figured that we’d need at least a website that would show professionalism and communicate the key features of the MVP. In addition, we needed to have these key features working in the MVP that when combined would already provide a useful tool to the early users of the product.

Looking back we think this worked out well because a few weeks ago we launched Orchest on the infamous Hacker News platform and received some great initial reactions. We even found out that someone had hunted us on Product Hunt unexpectedly and that we had reached the front page on there too.

Although the launch was really helpful in getting some early feedback from potential users and finding companies that are interested in being pilot users of the managed cloud version, we very much feel like we’re just getting started. The open-source MVP is starting to take shape, and more and more valuable use cases are being unlocked every time we commit our latest changes to the GitHub repository.

What is next on the horizon for Orchest?

We are looking for awesome people to join us on our mission to build the world’s best tools for data scientists and their teams. At the same time, we want to engage companies that are looking to leverage data and the PyData/R stack to accelerate our product development in exactly the right direction. They will benefit from feature development directly aimed at their needs, while we learn which valuable use cases are most prevalent and how we can support those even better with Orchest. If you are interested in trying out the managed cloud version you can sign up for early access through this Typeform.

What do you think the future of data science looks like?

Data science will move from laptops to the cloud. No company wants their sensitive data stored directly on employees laptops. Cloud computing is just a vastly superior mode of operation, due to its removal of non-core activities from companies and inherently more secure and scalable properties.

Furthermore, we believe we will continue to see a lot of innovation happening in open source tools & frameworks, and data science teams need to be able to leverage the collective innovation that is being spearheaded by great initiatives such as Apache Arrow/Kafka/Cassandra/Hadoop/Spark, PyTorch/Tensorflow, PyData/R ecosystem, etc.

In addition, we are big believers in the power of interactive computing and the direct feedback model that enables an experimental workflow that leads to great discoveries in data and solutions that actually contribute to the bottom line. The phenomenal success of projects like Jupyter and their interactive notebooks reaffirm this. Hence, we decided to make notebooks first class citizens in Orchest’s data science pipelines, and we will continue to develop features that make building and running data pipelines simpler for data scientists.

What brought you to Seedcamp?

Seedcamp has been a leading seed investor in Europe for quite a while now. You were on my radar many many years before we ever had any contact. I just checked my inbox and saw I subscribed to Seedcamp’s newsletter back in April 2015. I’ve always looked at the companies, events, and blog posts from a distance. Trying to understand startups and venture capital and generally just observing all the awesome technology companies they are investing in. Understanding what these companies are doing, and playing with their cool products of course.

Serendipitously, we connected during our recent fundraise through a great introduction that was made by another investor who saw a potential match. Our initial call with Kyran was great, he asked all the right questions and really got what we were trying to do with Orchest.

Any advice for founders starting their business now?

Keep believing in what you’re doing. For years on end, you and perhaps a handful of others are the only ones that are seeing the opportunity and have the belief in what you’re trying to do. It’s critical to not get discouraged. Over time, people will start seeing merit once you’ve had time to develop your ideas and implement them in one form or another.

Try to find the balance between your own convictions and what the market is telling you. They won’t be able to tell you what to build or how to build your product. But they surely will tell you whether they like it or not, and whether it solves their problems for them. That being said, it’s really critical to ‘find your crowd’. Identify the communities that are most interested in what you’re doing because they care deeply about the topics involved. They can be great evangelists, early users, customers, etc. A great marketing perspective on this comes from Seth Godin talking about the concept of Otaku and the value of making something remarkable.

Lastly, look for people that can help you. Building a scalable company is incredibly difficult. It requires skill, patience, luck, capital, and a small army of phenomenal individuals. Even when you have all of that, things can still go wrong. There’s no reason not to accept all the help you can get, as people have been in similar situations before and their advice can help a lot. It’s also great to have people rooting for you when times are tough.

Just do it!

Riff raises $1.5M to revolutionise remote team communication through voice-first chat tool


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

Riff Co-Founders Isabel Bescos (CEO) and Matthew Scheybeler (CTO)

As the movement towards remote work, greatly accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, becomes more widely adopted, the need for solutions that support team communication and collaboration are more important than ever, especially as many companies announce plans to now retain a fully distributed structure.

That’s why we’re excited to back Isabel and Matthew, the brains behind Riff – the voice-first chat tool set to revolutionise how teams communicate when working remotely – as part of a $1.5M seed round led by our friends at Balderton and with participation from angels including Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas, COO of GoCardless, Nicolas Brusson, CEO of BlaBlaCar and Tim Sadler, CEO of Tessian.

Set up by CEO Isabel Bescos (former head of corporate strategy at BlaBlaCar, and previously part of Balderton’s investment team), with CTO Matthew Scheybeler, (co-founder of Silicon Valley’s pioneering video search tool, blinkx), Riff is positioned as the answer to the everyday pain points felt by teams trying to communicate from different locations.

On why the need for Riff is more important now than ever, CEO and co-founder, Isabel Bescos, comments:

“Distributed teams require new tools to allow them to communicate as efficiently as when they were sat next to each other. Instant messaging tools can be distracting, jammed with notifications and hard-to-follow threads, and on the other hand, video conferencing tools often require additional software and tend to be used for pre-scheduled, formal meetings.
What is lacking is something that enables effortless and spontaneously collaboration throughout the day. The remote equivalent of turning to ask a colleague a quick question, or to discuss the project you are working on.

We are looking to replicate that ease and spontaneity with Riff in creating a totally new voice tool for teams. With Riff, users can instantly speak to any team member while collaborating on a piece of work. For example, Riff is particularly helpful whenever several members of a team need to work together on an urgent problem, such as solving a technical bug which could take several hours. Riff allows you to be connected to your team for long periods of time without the intensity of being on camera for hours on end. People can also drop in and out as needed without the need for scheduled calls.”

Isabel adds, “We wanted to take the speed and fluidity with which online gamers converse whilst gaming, and transpose it into the enterprise. Rather than inundating users with notifications, Riff hopes to simplify interactions. Speaking on Riff is less distracting than Slack or Email, but faster than scheduling and waiting for a video call.

“For years, companies have been searching for ways to make office communications faster. Not just for when team members are working from home, but between teams on different floors, different offices or across time zones. None have quite managed to combine speed and efficiency with security and minimal disruption until now. Plus, the potential of Riff is huge. We’re only just scratching the surface of what such a communication tool can do and offer to companies and it’s an exciting road to be on.”

On why we invested our Managing Partner, Carlos, comments:

“The need to communicate with team members, many of which are distributed around the world in times like these, is more important than ever. We are very excited to back Isabel, Matthew and their vision for Riff to reduce the pain that teams have in making communications more spontaneous and more relevant

Riff is currently in private beta and plans to launch publicly in 2021. The funding will be used to build out the engineering team and to develop Riff’s full feature suite.

Founder Q&A with Michal Meiri – CEO of Health Tech company, Agamon


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

In our latest Q&A we sat down with Michal Meiri, Co-founder of Agamon, an Israeli health tech company who have developed a comprehensive NLP and AI platform that enables medical teams to leverage data for better patient care, reduced risk and improved outcomes.  

Michal Meiri – Cofounder of Agamon

We recently participated in Agamon’s $3M round, led by MMC. On the investment, our Managing Partner, Reshma Sohoni, comments: “We have been an incredibly active investor in health tech over the past decade and one of the biggest, unsolved issues is the endless document problem in health systems. Agamon’s cutting edge platform will be highly impactful to transform clinical text into usable data to help improve patient care – saving money, time, and more importantly, improving patient outcomes.”

We’re incredibly excited to have Michal and the Agamon team as new additions to the Seedcamp Nation. And, on that note, over to Michal to tell us more about what they’re building and why it’s needed now more than ever.

What led you to create Agamon and why is there a specific need for it now? 

There is an urgent and unmet need for healthcare organizations to improve quality and reduce the cost of care. The United States, for example, ranks highest in percentage of GDP spent on healthcare, but only ranks 15th in terms of quality. I always believed that data holds the key to transformation in the way healthcare is delivered; data can unlock opportunities for cost reduction, care improvement, and so much more.

Coming from the fintech world, I was intrigued by the potential to use data to transform traditional industries. Bringing this potential from financial institutions to healthcare, I quickly found that the problem is that in healthcare around 80% of data is textual, which essentially means that this data cannot be used to automate processes. 

Agamon offers a solution to this exact problem–we apply our NLP and AI technology to make sense of these textual narratives, allowing healthcare organizations to automate urgent and time-consuming processes. This need obviously existed before the pandemic, but the massive volume of free text on patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 only strengthened the case for structuring these datasets and many others. 

Can you tell me more about your background and how you met your co-founders? 

Before establishing Agamon, I was a product manager in the FinTech industry at both Wonga and Checkout, where I built B2B products that leveraged mass volumes of data to make smarter decisions about our lives, which no doubt gave me the skills and experience necessary to do what I’m doing today at Agamon. In terms of my academic background, I hold an MPhil in Nanotechnology from Cambridge University and a BSc in Computer Science and Chemistry from Tel Aviv University. 

I met my co-founder Omri, Agamon’s CTO, while consulting for an Israeli FinTech startup, where he was previously the CTO. I truly enjoyed working with Omri and was impressed by his ability to manage and teach developers with different backgrounds and levels while instilling a sense of enjoyment and fun. Omri is a unique CTO in the sense that he’s a proper co-founder that understands not only the technology side of the business but the strategic side as well and that, in my opinion, is  quite unique. I knew I would enjoy building a business with him and that we would both bring a completely different set of skills to the table. 

You’re currently working mainly across Israel and the US. Have you noticed any major differences when it comes to operating and selling across the two different countries? 

For sure. Israelis are much more direct and blunt, so doing business in the US is different in every possible way. In Israel, everything moves significantly faster, relatively speaking. In addition to the cultural differences, there are differences inherent to a private vs. public market. Israel relies on a public healthcare system incentivized mostly towards improving care, conducting research and reducing costs. In spite of the transition to value-based care in the US, the financials of their healthcare system are still very much based on fee-for-service. This means that Agamon’s use cases and value proposition needs to be adjusted to align appropriately with each market and we adjust our story accordingly.

What do you think the current climate means for the health tech industry?

While the current climate has been devastating in so many ways, I think it’s probably the best thing that could have happened to the healthtech industry. It has brought light to the urgent need to improve efficiency and automate processes both in hospitals and other care delivery settings. Not doing so has already resulted in so many lost lives, malpractice claims, and wasted resources. It is now clearer than ever that healthcare must make the leap and join the 21st century, and fortunately, many organizations are embracing this and are even excited about the possibilities and potential brought in by technology and innovation.

How did you first hear about Seedcamp? 

Seedcamp is a well-known brand; I heard about it often when I lived and worked in the tech industry in London. I always knew that it is one of the best funds for seed companies. When MMC, our lead investor, suggested connecting us with SC, it was a no brainer. The partners were really curious about the product itself and asked some really interesting questions about the features and product roadmap. Having been a product manager, that hooked me immediately!

How have you found the experience of being a Seedcamp founder so far? 

We had a founders’ bootcamp a few months ago, which I really enjoyed. What’s great about Seedcamp is that companies all join at a very early stage, so you join a community of founders in similar situations–the networking and dialogue are invaluable. Also, it feels like the partners are really keen to support founders, whether directly or through the platform they provide. 

Any words of advice for anyone thinking about starting their own business? 

It’s a tough journey so make sure you do something that you truly enjoy doing and feel passionate about, and if you find it, just keep pushing. 

Founder Q&A with Michal Meiri – CEO of Health Tech company, Agamon


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

In our latest Q&A we sat down with Michal Meiri, Co-founder of Agamon, an Israeli health tech company who have developed a comprehensive NLP and AI platform that enables medical teams to leverage data for better patient care, reduced risk and improved outcomes.  

Michal Meiri – Cofounder of Agamon

We recently participated in Agamon’s $3M round, led by MMC. On the investment, our Managing Partner, Reshma Sohoni, comments: “We have been an incredibly active investor in health tech over the past decade and one of the biggest, unsolved issues is the endless document problem in health systems. Agamon’s cutting edge platform will be highly impactful to transform clinical text into usable data to help improve patient care – saving money, time, and more importantly, improving patient outcomes.”

We’re incredibly excited to have Michal and the Agamon team as new additions to the Seedcamp Nation. And, on that note, over to Michal to tell us more about what they’re building and why it’s needed now more than ever.

What led you to create Agamon and why is there a specific need for it now? 

There is an urgent and unmet need for healthcare organizations to improve quality and reduce the cost of care. The United States, for example, ranks highest in percentage of GDP spent on healthcare, but only ranks 15th in terms of quality. I always believed that data holds the key to transformation in the way healthcare is delivered; data can unlock opportunities for cost reduction, care improvement, and so much more.

Coming from the fintech world, I was intrigued by the potential to use data to transform traditional industries. Bringing this potential from financial institutions to healthcare, I quickly found that the problem is that in healthcare around 80% of data is textual, which essentially means that this data cannot be used to automate processes. 

Agamon offers a solution to this exact problem–we apply our NLP and AI technology to make sense of these textual narratives, allowing healthcare organizations to automate urgent and time-consuming processes. This need obviously existed before the pandemic, but the massive volume of free text on patients who were hospitalized with COVID-19 only strengthened the case for structuring these datasets and many others. 

Can you tell me more about your background and how you met your co-founders? 

Before establishing Agamon, I was a product manager in the FinTech industry at both Wonga and Checkout, where I built B2B products that leveraged mass volumes of data to make smarter decisions about our lives, which no doubt gave me the skills and experience necessary to do what I’m doing today at Agamon. In terms of my academic background, I hold an MPhil in Nanotechnology from Cambridge University and a BSc in Computer Science and Chemistry from Tel Aviv University. 

I met my co-founder Omri, Agamon’s CTO, while consulting for an Israeli FinTech startup, where he was previously the CTO. I truly enjoyed working with Omri and was impressed by his ability to manage and teach developers with different backgrounds and levels while instilling a sense of enjoyment and fun. Omri is a unique CTO in the sense that he’s a proper co-founder that understands not only the technology side of the business but the strategic side as well and that, in my opinion, is  quite unique. I knew I would enjoy building a business with him and that we would both bring a completely different set of skills to the table. 

You’re currently working mainly across Israel and the US. Have you noticed any major differences when it comes to operating and selling across the two different countries? 

For sure. Israelis are much more direct and blunt, so doing business in the US is different in every possible way. In Israel, everything moves significantly faster, relatively speaking. In addition to the cultural differences, there are differences inherent to a private vs. public market. Israel relies on a public healthcare system incentivized mostly towards improving care, conducting research and reducing costs. In spite of the transition to value-based care in the US, the financials of their healthcare system are still very much based on fee-for-service. This means that Agamon’s use cases and value proposition needs to be adjusted to align appropriately with each market and we adjust our story accordingly.

What do you think the current climate means for the health tech industry?

While the current climate has been devastating in so many ways, I think it’s probably the best thing that could have happened to the healthtech industry. It has brought light to the urgent need to improve efficiency and automate processes both in hospitals and other care delivery settings. Not doing so has already resulted in so many lost lives, malpractice claims, and wasted resources. It is now clearer than ever that healthcare must make the leap and join the 21st century, and fortunately, many organizations are embracing this and are even excited about the possibilities and potential brought in by technology and innovation.

How did you first hear about Seedcamp? 

Seedcamp is a well-known brand; I heard about it often when I lived and worked in the tech industry in London. I always knew that it is one of the best funds for seed companies. When MMC, our lead investor, suggested connecting us with SC, it was a no brainer. The partners were really curious about the product itself and asked some really interesting questions about the features and product roadmap. Having been a product manager, that hooked me immediately!

How have you found the experience of being a Seedcamp founder so far? 

We had a founders’ bootcamp a few months ago, which I really enjoyed. What’s great about Seedcamp is that companies all join at a very early stage, so you join a community of founders in similar situations–the networking and dialogue are invaluable. Also, it feels like the partners are really keen to support founders, whether directly or through the platform they provide. 

Any words of advice for anyone thinking about starting their own business? 

It’s a tough journey so make sure you do something that you truly enjoy doing and feel passionate about, and if you find it, just keep pushing. 

Why we led pre-seed into travel tech startup Tickitto


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

The events and experiences category represents the third-largest travel segment worldwide and is growing faster than the overall travel market. Despite that, the space is made up of suppliers or reservation platforms that often focus their efforts on specific genre and/or geographies. That’s why we’re excited to back Dana and the team at Tickitto, a travel tech company that aims to help travel retailers access tickets to events and travel-related experiences through one single connection.

Tickitto Founder and CEO, Dana Latouff

While travel and experiences have been temporarily hit, we believe the problem Tickitto is out to address is one that’s deeply felt across the industry where a lack of unification in how travel experiences can be surfaced and booked creates frustration for developers and customers alike.

Tickitto plans to carry out a lot of the heavy-lifting experienced by travel retailers by standardizing the infrastructure and offering configurable front-end interfaces. With a few lines of code, any developer can tap into the ticket supply and start building a fantastic ticket buying experience on their platform. 

“The API environment in this space is still in its infancy, and there is a huge opportunity for innovation in this multi-billion dollar industry,” says Dana Lattouf, Founder and CEO. 

Travel retailers will not only limit what can be large up-front development costs but will be able to earn additional revenue through commission on those tickets. With COVID-19 hitting the travel space significantly, travel retailers are inevitably focused on their recovery plans, which includes how supporting ancillary revenue streams can help drive future revenues. 

Dana adds:

“Tickets for theatre, music, sport and the arts can be easily overlooked during the trip but are essential to our enjoyment. In fact, it is those events and activities that motivate us to pack our bags and go. 

One would naturally think that acquiring ticket supply is relatively straightforward and made available by plugging into an API. We realised this is not the case, and that many platforms still run on legacy infrastructure, making the integration work labour-intensive.

Our aim is to work with major ticketing platforms, sports rights holders, event organisers and experience suppliers to modernise the infrastructure and build external collaboration capabilities to scale their reach. This will enable us to find new ways to serve today’s modern traveller and make it simpler to deliver a connected trip experience via their preferred travel retailer’s platform. So that when you are booking your flights to LA in April, you can also buy tickets to an event at Staples Center or an LA Galaxy home game from the same platform”.

On the investment our Partner, Tom Wilson, comments:

“When we first met Dana and the Tickitto team, we were amazed by their deep understanding of this space and passion for solving the problems they saw in the market. Spending more time with the team, it is clear they have the founder-market fit that we look for. We are excited to lead their pre-seed round and support them on their mission to transform the infrastructure that underpins how tickets to events and experiences are sold and distributed.”

We’re excited to have met Dana through our relationship with Google for Startups, as one of the fantastic companies selected to participate in their Female Founders programme.

For more information visit: https://tickitto.com/

Why we led pre-seed into travel tech startup Tickitto


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

The events and experiences category represents the third-largest travel segment worldwide and is growing faster than the overall travel market. Despite that, the space is made up of suppliers or reservation platforms that often focus their efforts on specific genre and/or geographies. That’s why we’re excited to back Dana and the team at Tickitto, a travel tech company that aims to help travel retailers access tickets to events and travel-related experiences through one single connection.

Tickitto Founder and CEO, Dana Latouff

While travel and experiences have been temporarily hit, we believe the problem Tickitto is out to address is one that’s deeply felt across the industry where a lack of unification in how travel experiences can be surfaced and booked creates frustration for developers and customers alike.

Tickitto plans to carry out a lot of the heavy-lifting experienced by travel retailers by standardizing the infrastructure and offering configurable front-end interfaces. With a few lines of code, any developer can tap into the ticket supply and start building a fantastic ticket buying experience on their platform. 

“The API environment in this space is still in its infancy, and there is a huge opportunity for innovation in this multi-billion dollar industry,” says Dana Lattouf, Founder and CEO. 

Travel retailers will not only limit what can be large up-front development costs but will be able to earn additional revenue through commission on those tickets. With COVID-19 hitting the travel space significantly, travel retailers are inevitably focused on their recovery plans, which includes how supporting ancillary revenue streams can help drive future revenues. 

Dana adds:

“Tickets for theatre, music, sport and the arts can be easily overlooked during the trip but are essential to our enjoyment. In fact, it is those events and activities that motivate us to pack our bags and go. 

One would naturally think that acquiring ticket supply is relatively straightforward and made available by plugging into an API. We realised this is not the case, and that many platforms still run on legacy infrastructure, making the integration work labour-intensive.

Our aim is to work with major ticketing platforms, sports rights holders, event organisers and experience suppliers to modernise the infrastructure and build external collaboration capabilities to scale their reach. This will enable us to find new ways to serve today’s modern traveller and make it simpler to deliver a connected trip experience via their preferred travel retailer’s platform. So that when you are booking your flights to LA in April, you can also buy tickets to an event at Staples Center or an LA Galaxy home game from the same platform”.

On the investment our Partner, Tom Wilson, comments:

“When we first met Dana and the Tickitto team, we were amazed by their deep understanding of this space and passion for solving the problems they saw in the market. Spending more time with the team, it is clear they have the founder-market fit that we look for. We are excited to lead their pre-seed round and support them on their mission to transform the infrastructure that underpins how tickets to events and experiences are sold and distributed.”

We’re excited to have met Dana through our relationship with Google for Startups, as one of the fantastic companies selected to participate in their Female Founders programme.

For more information visit: https://tickitto.com/

MedAll launches with a world-first virtual medical conference brought to life on Hopin


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

The importance of global and equitable access to healthcare has never been more acute, yet standards and accessibility vary hugely across the world. That’s why we’re incredibly excited to announce our investment in MedAll.

On the investment, our partner, Tom Wilson, comments: “What the MedAll team is building has the potential to be truly transformational to the training of healthcare professionals and to connecting the global community. They’re exactly the sort of passionate mission-driven team that we love to back and we feel privileged to have the opportunity to lead their pre-seed round”.

We sat down with founder, Dr. Phil McElnay, off-the-back of MedAll’s recent, and world-first, online health conference attended by over 300 delegates from across the world and brought to life using portfolio company, Hopin, to discuss what they’re building in more detail.

MedAll founder and CEO, Dr. Phil McElnay

What led you to create MedAll and why do you think there’s a specific need for it now?

Healthcare training is inequitable around the world. Ultimately that means care is inequitable too. We were compelled that we needed to make excellent healthcare training more accessible, more fair and within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world. We are otherwise careering towards a global healthcare catastrophe. The World Health Organisation forecasts that we will need an additional 18 million healthcare professionals by 2030. To provide high quality training at that scale – in addition to managing the glaring crisis we otherwise face-  the world needs a paradigm shift in how medical education is delivered. We plan to make the best-in-class medical training technology within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world.

[Background: In high income countries a significant amount of money is spent on digital technology that healthcare professionals use to regularly demonstrate and evidence their competencies throughout their training and professional practice. It means patients can trust those who are treating them, and they receive comparable care across. It’s at the cornerstone of most medical training programmes in high income countries. However, if the costs of administering this software could be reduced we could channel more of our precious healthcare resources back to frontline care.

In low and many middle income countries the sort of technology is challenging to implement- some of the countries can’t afford to deploy the bespoke systems used in high income countries. It means the best in class training technology is not available where it is often needed most. We have built a tool that makes it possible for every healthcare organisation to build and implement that technology themselves- without touching a line of code. It means it is accessible, it means healthcare professionals get high quality training and it means patients around the world are a step closer to equitable care.

What were you doing before you started MedAll?

I am a medic by training. Prior to jumping into startup life, I was a National Institute for Health Research Academic Clinical Fellow in Cardiothoracic surgery – or in non-medical lingo – a doctor in heart and lung surgery. I was a proud member of the Association of Surgeons in Training Executive and subsequently a medical director in the Rare Disease Unit at GlaxoSmithKline where I got to work with world experts on finding therapies for rare diseases. Whilst getting MedAll off the ground I was fortunate enough to maintain part-time clinical practice as a General Practice Registrar in Northern Ireland.

MedAll was recently hailed for launching a world-first in medical conferences. Can you tell us where the idea came from and how you went about turning it into a reality>?

Medics disseminate their latest research findings at medical conferences. As coronavirus took hold in early March 2020, we watched as conference after conference was cancelled. This was undoubtedly the right thing to do but was going to have a huge impact on rapid research dissemination. Now, more than ever, we needed to sharing, debating and discussing the latest medical research, but we needed to think creatively and responsibly. We sprung into action and put out a rallying call to the medical community. In under 6 weeks a small team of 20 medics from the MedAll community organised the “MedAll International Virtual Medical Conference” – an online medical conference on a scale that was hailed as a “world-first.” 

On 23rd May 2020, alongside our friends at Hopin, we hosted 200+ presenters, speakers, workshop leads and keynote speakers at an all-day virtual conference with a main stage and 18 virtual breakout rooms. There were 50+ oral research presentations across every medical specialty, 100+ virtual research poster presentations, four wonderful keynote speakers including the Director of Public Health for the New Zealand Ministry of Health, Time Magazine and Forbes featured surgeon Prof Shafi Ahmed, Medical Advisor to Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Associate Dean for Anaesthesia for Scotland. Over 300 delegates joined from every continent, other than Antarctica.

What brought you to Seedcamp? 

I was impressed with the mission that Seedcamp held in helping founders solve big, global problems. The diversity of the startups you had backed – in both their company domains and founder experience – also opened up a diverse network of talented people on the same journey. Within the healthcare portfolio, I could see talented people doing incredible things in a whole range of settings around the world- like Elephant Healthcare, Viz.ai and doctorly.

Any portfolio companies you’re already using/a customer of?

Where do I start? We’re big users of multiple companies across the Seedcamp portfolio and have already benefited from using Transferwise, SeedLegals, Hopin and Stotles, all of which are incredible. We used Hopin as the platform for our medical conference.

What’s next on the horizon?

We are radically focused on improving global medical training. The MedAll community of healthcare professionals is central to that and we plan to support our colleagues in healthcare in two ways over the next number of months.

Firstly, we’ll be running another – even more exciting – MedAll IVMC (International Virtual Medical Conference) in September and will be making some big announcements over the next few weeks – check out MedAll.org/conference or our twitter feed @MedAllApp for more details.

Secondly, we are excited to be working with some of the world’s largest medical NGOs to build out the organisational functionality on MedAll that will see the true transformation of medical training in many countries around the world. 

Anything you’d like to add about the healthcare space and where innovation is needed? 

Historically implementation has been slow in healthcare. Quite rightly the space has to be regulated and great care has to be taken to ensure safe introduction of new technologies. However, what we are seeing right now is the acceleration of innovation in healthcare at a pace that we could never have imagined- and much of it being done safely and with patients at the centre.

Outside of all of the technological innovations happening in healthcare right now- VR, AR, AI, big data, nanotech- one of the biggest global challenges to healthcare is actually less technological and more sociological- we need to help our healthcare professionals to keep the current pace of innovation. We need to see the introduction of systems that support our healthcare professionals to use their clinical understanding to problem-solve, design, innovate, test and implement innovations. 

Healthcare is a community. And when that community collectively strives for better we truly achieve incredible things.

MedAll launches with a world-first virtual medical conference brought to life on Hopin


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

The importance of global and equitable access to healthcare has never been more acute, yet standards and accessibility vary hugely across the world. That’s why we’re incredibly excited to announce our investment in MedAll.

On the investment, our partner, Tom Wilson, comments: “What the MedAll team is building has the potential to be truly transformational to the training of healthcare professionals and to connecting the global community. They’re exactly the sort of passionate mission-driven team that we love to back and we feel privileged to have the opportunity to lead their pre-seed round”.

We sat down with founder, Dr. Phil McElnay, off-the-back of MedAll’s recent, and world-first, online health conference attended by over 300 delegates from across the world and brought to life using portfolio company, Hopin, to discuss what they’re building in more detail.

MedAll founder and CEO, Dr. Phil McElnay

What led you to create MedAll and why do you think there’s a specific need for it now?

Healthcare training is inequitable around the world. Ultimately that means care is inequitable too. We were compelled that we needed to make excellent healthcare training more accessible, more fair and within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world. We are otherwise careering towards a global healthcare catastrophe. The World Health Organisation forecasts that we will need an additional 18 million healthcare professionals by 2030. To provide high quality training at that scale – in addition to managing the glaring crisis we otherwise face-  the world needs a paradigm shift in how medical education is delivered. We plan to make the best-in-class medical training technology within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world.

[Background: In high income countries a significant amount of money is spent on digital technology that healthcare professionals use to regularly demonstrate and evidence their competencies throughout their training and professional practice. It means patients can trust those who are treating them, and they receive comparable care across. It’s at the cornerstone of most medical training programmes in high income countries. However, if the costs of administering this software could be reduced we could channel more of our precious healthcare resources back to frontline care.

In low and many middle income countries the sort of technology is challenging to implement- some of the countries can’t afford to deploy the bespoke systems used in high income countries. It means the best in class training technology is not available where it is often needed most. We have built a tool that makes it possible for every healthcare organisation to build and implement that technology themselves- without touching a line of code. It means it is accessible, it means healthcare professionals get high quality training and it means patients around the world are a step closer to equitable care.

What were you doing before you started MedAll?

I am a medic by training. Prior to jumping into startup life, I was a National Institute for Health Research Academic Clinical Fellow in Cardiothoracic surgery – or in non-medical lingo – a doctor in heart and lung surgery. I was a proud member of the Association of Surgeons in Training Executive and subsequently a medical director in the Rare Disease Unit at GlaxoSmithKline where I got to work with world experts on finding therapies for rare diseases. Whilst getting MedAll off the ground I was fortunate enough to maintain part-time clinical practice as a General Practice Registrar in Northern Ireland.

MedAll was recently hailed for launching a world-first in medical conferences. Can you tell us where the idea came from and how you went about turning it into a reality>?

Medics disseminate their latest research findings at medical conferences. As coronavirus took hold in early March 2020, we watched as conference after conference was cancelled. This was undoubtedly the right thing to do but was going to have a huge impact on rapid research dissemination. Now, more than ever, we needed to sharing, debating and discussing the latest medical research, but we needed to think creatively and responsibly. We sprung into action and put out a rallying call to the medical community. In under 6 weeks a small team of 20 medics from the MedAll community organised the “MedAll International Virtual Medical Conference” – an online medical conference on a scale that was hailed as a “world-first.” 

On 23rd May 2020, alongside our friends at Hopin, we hosted 200+ presenters, speakers, workshop leads and keynote speakers at an all-day virtual conference with a main stage and 18 virtual breakout rooms. There were 50+ oral research presentations across every medical specialty, 100+ virtual research poster presentations, four wonderful keynote speakers including the Director of Public Health for the New Zealand Ministry of Health, Time Magazine and Forbes featured surgeon Prof Shafi Ahmed, Medical Advisor to Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Associate Dean for Anaesthesia for Scotland. Over 300 delegates joined from every continent, other than Antarctica.

What brought you to Seedcamp? 

I was impressed with the mission that Seedcamp held in helping founders solve big, global problems. The diversity of the startups you had backed – in both their company domains and founder experience – also opened up a diverse network of talented people on the same journey. Within the healthcare portfolio, I could see talented people doing incredible things in a whole range of settings around the world- like Elephant Healthcare, Viz.ai and doctorly.

Any portfolio companies you’re already using/a customer of?

Where do I start? We’re big users of multiple companies across the Seedcamp portfolio and have already benefited from using Transferwise, SeedLegals, Hopin and Stotles, all of which are incredible. We used Hopin as the platform for our medical conference.

What’s next on the horizon?

We are radically focused on improving global medical training. The MedAll community of healthcare professionals is central to that and we plan to support our colleagues in healthcare in two ways over the next number of months.

Firstly, we’ll be running another – even more exciting – MedAll IVMC (International Virtual Medical Conference) in September and will be making some big announcements over the next few weeks – check out MedAll.org/conference or our twitter feed @MedAllApp for more details.

Secondly, we are excited to be working with some of the world’s largest medical NGOs to build out the organisational functionality on MedAll that will see the true transformation of medical training in many countries around the world. 

Anything you’d like to add about the healthcare space and where innovation is needed? 

Historically implementation has been slow in healthcare. Quite rightly the space has to be regulated and great care has to be taken to ensure safe introduction of new technologies. However, what we are seeing right now is the acceleration of innovation in healthcare at a pace that we could never have imagined- and much of it being done safely and with patients at the centre.

Outside of all of the technological innovations happening in healthcare right now- VR, AR, AI, big data, nanotech- one of the biggest global challenges to healthcare is actually less technological and more sociological- we need to help our healthcare professionals to keep the current pace of innovation. We need to see the introduction of systems that support our healthcare professionals to use their clinical understanding to problem-solve, design, innovate, test and implement innovations. 

Healthcare is a community. And when that community collectively strives for better we truly achieve incredible things.

MedAll launches with a world-first virtual medical conference brought to life on Hopin


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

The importance of global and equitable access to healthcare has never been more acute, yet standards and accessibility vary hugely across the world. That’s why we’re incredibly excited to announce our investment in MedAll.

On the investment, our partner, Tom Wilson, comments: “What the MedAll team is building has the potential to be truly transformational to the training of healthcare professionals and to connecting the global community. They’re exactly the sort of passionate mission-driven team that we love to back and we feel privileged to have the opportunity to lead their pre-seed round”.

We sat down with founder, Dr. Phil McElnay, off-the-back of MedAll’s recent, and world-first, online health conference attended by over 300 delegates from across the world and brought to life using portfolio company, Hopin, to discuss what they’re building in more detail.

MedAll founder and CEO, Dr. Phil McElnay

What led you to create MedAll and why do you think there’s a specific need for it now?

Healthcare training is inequitable around the world. Ultimately that means care is inequitable too. We were compelled that we needed to make excellent healthcare training more accessible, more fair and within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world. We are otherwise careering towards a global healthcare catastrophe. The World Health Organisation forecasts that we will need an additional 18 million healthcare professionals by 2030. To provide high quality training at that scale – in addition to managing the glaring crisis we otherwise face-  the world needs a paradigm shift in how medical education is delivered. We plan to make the best-in-class medical training technology within reach of every healthcare organisation around the world.

[Background: In high income countries a significant amount of money is spent on digital technology that healthcare professionals use to regularly demonstrate and evidence their competencies throughout their training and professional practice. It means patients can trust those who are treating them, and they receive comparable care across. It’s at the cornerstone of most medical training programmes in high income countries. However, if the costs of administering this software could be reduced we could channel more of our precious healthcare resources back to frontline care.

In low and many middle income countries the sort of technology is challenging to implement- some of the countries can’t afford to deploy the bespoke systems used in high income countries. It means the best in class training technology is not available where it is often needed most. We have built a tool that makes it possible for every healthcare organisation to build and implement that technology themselves- without touching a line of code. It means it is accessible, it means healthcare professionals get high quality training and it means patients around the world are a step closer to equitable care.

What were you doing before you started MedAll?

I am a medic by training. Prior to jumping into startup life, I was a National Institute for Health Research Academic Clinical Fellow in Cardiothoracic surgery – or in non-medical lingo – a doctor in heart and lung surgery. I was a proud member of the Association of Surgeons in Training Executive and subsequently a medical director in the Rare Disease Unit at GlaxoSmithKline where I got to work with world experts on finding therapies for rare diseases. Whilst getting MedAll off the ground I was fortunate enough to maintain part-time clinical practice as a General Practice Registrar in Northern Ireland.

MedAll was recently hailed for launching a world-first in medical conferences. Can you tell us where the idea came from and how you went about turning it into a reality>?

Medics disseminate their latest research findings at medical conferences. As coronavirus took hold in early March 2020, we watched as conference after conference was cancelled. This was undoubtedly the right thing to do but was going to have a huge impact on rapid research dissemination. Now, more than ever, we needed to sharing, debating and discussing the latest medical research, but we needed to think creatively and responsibly. We sprung into action and put out a rallying call to the medical community. In under 6 weeks a small team of 20 medics from the MedAll community organised the “MedAll International Virtual Medical Conference” – an online medical conference on a scale that was hailed as a “world-first.” 

On 23rd May 2020, alongside our friends at Hopin, we hosted 200+ presenters, speakers, workshop leads and keynote speakers at an all-day virtual conference with a main stage and 18 virtual breakout rooms. There were 50+ oral research presentations across every medical specialty, 100+ virtual research poster presentations, four wonderful keynote speakers including the Director of Public Health for the New Zealand Ministry of Health, Time Magazine and Forbes featured surgeon Prof Shafi Ahmed, Medical Advisor to Medecins Sans Frontieres and the Associate Dean for Anaesthesia for Scotland. Over 300 delegates joined from every continent, other than Antarctica.

What brought you to Seedcamp? 

I was impressed with the mission that Seedcamp held in helping founders solve big, global problems. The diversity of the startups you had backed – in both their company domains and founder experience – also opened up a diverse network of talented people on the same journey. Within the healthcare portfolio, I could see talented people doing incredible things in a whole range of settings around the world- like Elephant Healthcare, Viz.ai and doctorly.

Any portfolio companies you’re already using/a customer of?

Where do I start? We’re big users of multiple companies across the Seedcamp portfolio and have already benefited from using Transferwise, SeedLegals, Hopin and Stotles, all of which are incredible. We used Hopin as the platform for our medical conference.

What’s next on the horizon?

We are radically focused on improving global medical training. The MedAll community of healthcare professionals is central to that and we plan to support our colleagues in healthcare in two ways over the next number of months.

Firstly, we’ll be running another – even more exciting – MedAll IVMC (International Virtual Medical Conference) in September and will be making some big announcements over the next few weeks – check out MedAll.org/conference or our twitter feed @MedAllApp for more details.

Secondly, we are excited to be working with some of the world’s largest medical NGOs to build out the organisational functionality on MedAll that will see the true transformation of medical training in many countries around the world. 

Anything you’d like to add about the healthcare space and where innovation is needed? 

Historically implementation has been slow in healthcare. Quite rightly the space has to be regulated and great care has to be taken to ensure safe introduction of new technologies. However, what we are seeing right now is the acceleration of innovation in healthcare at a pace that we could never have imagined- and much of it being done safely and with patients at the centre.

Outside of all of the technological innovations happening in healthcare right now- VR, AR, AI, big data, nanotech- one of the biggest global challenges to healthcare is actually less technological and more sociological- we need to help our healthcare professionals to keep the current pace of innovation. We need to see the introduction of systems that support our healthcare professionals to use their clinical understanding to problem-solve, design, innovate, test and implement innovations. 

Healthcare is a community. And when that community collectively strives for better we truly achieve incredible things.

Kitch launches to bring our favourite restaurants to our home with €1M pre-seed


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

Last year when we met Rui Bento and Nuno Rodrigues – two former executives of Uber in Southern Europe who launched the ridesharing and food delivery company in Portugal – they told us about their mission to enable everyone in the city to enjoy dishes from their favourite restaurants, at home. While the concept of food delivery is well-known thanks to the likes of Uber Eats, Deliveroo etc, Rui and Nuno were truly thinking ‘delivery-first’, something traditional restaurants aren’t set up for.

Seeing the potential of these two highly impressive operators and the poor infrastructure many restaurants have in place, which prevents them from delivering to consumers, it was an easy decision for us to lead this €1M pre-seed round alongside Lisbon-based Mustard Seed MAZE which has also attracted a number of industry-specific angels including João Cepeda, Founder and President at Time Out Market Lisbon

“Food delivery and takeaway are a growing part of our routines and will become even more prevalent in the context of the current pandemic. It’s easy, convenient, and there are more and more restaurants available. However, not everything is perfect. Many of our favourite restaurants still don’t make it to our dining tables. And most restaurants haven’t conceived their food to travel across town inside a backpack, on a motorbike”, shares Rui.

Every element of the Kitch experience is designed from scratch — from the ingredients to the packaging – and the team is committed to leaving no trail behind its deliveries, be it by reducing non-reusable plastic packaging, implementing technology-based solutions to reduce food waste, or improving the energy efficiency of food production and delivery.

On the investment, our Partner, Sia Houchangnia, comments:

“The way people eat is changing, fast, and Kitch provides the infrastructure that will allow restaurants to adapt and thrive in this new environment while at the same time building a brand that will be recognized for best-in-class operations. There is a massive opportunity here to be one of the few businesses that define the future of food which is an extremely complex market to navigate. Therefore, it is essential to have an execution driven team that knows the space inside out. With Rui and Nuno, we know we have found one. They are exceptional, execution-driven founders, and what they’ve achieved in only a few months reinforce our belief that they can expand fast and be one of the few winners in this highly competitive market.”

The team will use the capital raised from this round to start developing and scaling its operations from Lisbon, connecting the city to its favourite restaurants through meals made for delivery, offering restaurants new avenues to develop their businesses in a delicate economic environment, and taking a first step to making food delivery more sustainable.

Primer raises £3.8M to take the pain out of payments


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

At the beginning of this year, we led the pre-seed investment into Paul and Gabriel, the brains behind Primer, the new Fintech infrastructure solution out to help supercharge payments teams. We’re thrilled for the team who within a few short months have gone onto raise a new seed round led by Balderton Capital and with participation from Fintech giants including Taavet Hinrikus, bringing their total raised to just under £3.8M

Paul and Gabriel met while working at Braintree/Paypal where they worked collaboratively across sales and technical solutions in pitching to global mid-market and large enterprise merchants. It was during this time the pair experienced first-hand the core challenges merchants face in building out complex payments systems, leading to the genesis of Primer in January 2020. It’s also where we originally met and got to know Gabriel — who spent some time with the portfolio as part of his role at Braintree — and we’re now delighted to include him and Paul as fully-fledged members of the Seedcamp Nation.

Payments is incredibly complex and merchants’ needs have become increasingly sophisticated over the past few years, demanding more from their overall payments solution which requires them to leverage a variety of PSPs, local banking relationships (such as SEPA DD), properietary payment methods (such as Klarna, GoCardless and WeChat) and other third party payments services in order to expand to new markets and offer the payments experience their customers demand.

Add to this a need to optimise for cost and authorisation (acceptance) rates, reduce fraud, improve user experience and adapt to macro changes in the payments landscape (PSD2 and 3DS 2.0), the demands on payments teams have never been greater and, as a result, it becomes increasingly complex for merchants to scale payments as they manage an ever-growing web of interdependent technical integrations across payments services. This can directly impact user experience + checkout, and critically reduce visibility of data across their increasingly complex payments ecosystems.

Co-founder Gabriel LeRoux comments:

“Fundamentally, this is an infrastructure challenge. We see ourselves as doing the work merchants would have to do themselves, but through a unified API and integration, and with sophisticated data and analytics tools to help them take control of, and supercharge their global payments strategies. We’re aiming to remove all technical burden associated with implementing and managing payments through a best-in-class, unified payments API and checkout.”

Our Partner, Sia Houchangnia, adds:

“The highly fragmented world of payments has become extremely difficult for merchants to navigate on their own. Through its unified API and advanced analytics solution, Primer allows merchants to scale their payments without all the technical headaches. It takes a special team to make the complex simple and with Gab and Paul, we immediately knew we had one. They are both hugely ambitious and bring strong domain expertise from their time at Braintree as well as the perfect mix of commercial and technical excellence.”

For more information on how Primer can supercharge your payments team visit primer.io

Primer raises £3.8M to take the pain out of payments


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

At the beginning of this year, we led the pre-seed investment into Paul and Gabriel, the brains behind Primer, the new Fintech infrastructure solution out to help supercharge payments teams. We’re thrilled for the team who within a few short months have gone onto raise a new seed round led by Balderton Capital and with participation from Fintech giants including Taavet Hinrikus, bringing their total raised to just over £3.8M

Paul and Gabriel met while working at Braintree/Paypal where they worked collaboratively across sales and technical solutions in pitching to global mid-market and large enterprise merchants. It was during this time the pair experienced first-hand the core challenges merchants face in building out complex payments systems, leading to the genesis of Primer in January 2020. It’s also where we originally met and got to know Gabriel — who spent some time with the portfolio as part of his role at Braintree — and we’re now delighted to include him and Paul as fully-fledged members of the Seedcamp Nation.

Payments is incredibly complex and merchants’ needs have become increasingly sophisticated over the past few years, demanding more from their overall payments solution which requires them to leverage a variety of PSPs, local banking relationships (such as SEPA DD), properietary payment methods (such as Klarna, GoCardless and WeChat) and other third party payments services in order to expand to new markets and offer the payments experience their customers demand.

Add to this a need to optimise for cost and authorisation (acceptance) rates, reduce fraud, improve user experience and adapt to macro changes in the payments landscape (PSD2 and 3DS 2.0), the demands on payments teams have never been greater and, as a result, it becomes increasingly complex for merchants to scale payments as they manage an ever-growing web of interdependent technical integrations across payments services. This can directly impact user experience + checkout, and critically reduce visibility of data across their increasingly complex payments ecosystems.

Co-founder Gabriel LeRoux comments:

“Fundamentally, this is an infrastructure challenge. We see ourselves as doing the work merchants would have to do themselves, but through a unified API and integration, and with sophisticated data and analytics tools to help them take control of, and supercharge their global payments strategies. We’re aiming to remove all technical burden associated with implementing and managing payments through a best-in-class, unified payments API and checkout.”

Our Partner, Sia Houchangnia, adds:

“The highly fragmented world of payments has become extremely difficult for merchants to navigate on their own. Through its unified API and advanced analytics solution, Primer allows merchants to scale their payments without all the technical headaches. It takes a special team to make the complex simple and with Gab and Paul, we immediately knew we had one. They are both hugely ambitious and bring strong domain expertise from their time at Braintree as well as the perfect mix of commercial and technical excellence.”

For more information on how Primer can supercharge your payments team visit primer.io

How we invested in three new pre-seed companies we only ever met remotely


This post is curated by Keith Teare. It was written by Natasha Lytton. The original is [linked here]

A few weeks back, when the whole world changed, we knew we’d have to adapt alongside it. Slowing down or reducing our commitment to back new, early-stage founders was not an option so we had to find a way to bring the magic, energy and interactive nature of our in-person, pre-seed Investment Forum and translate it into a new, online-only experience. 

Since launching Fund IV in late 2017, we’ve introduced many new processes to help us maintain our high-volume of early-stage investments and to ensure we’re able to meet as many new European founders as possible. As part of our rolling and open submissions on our website, every 6-8 weeks we hold an ‘Investment Forum’ where we invite pre-seed companies we’ve been following and who’ve already pitched to our investment team, present in front of our own LPs. This tends to be a fast-paced, half-day affair where we have up to 15 companies from all across Europe present their business ideas in front of leading later stage investors and high-net-worths, enabling early-stage founders to get on the radar of growth funds and opening up potential syndication opportunities with some of the angel investors in the room. 

Some of our core team steering the ship during our first digital-only Investment Forum

With 35 LPs dialling in from seven different countries and presentations from 11 pre-seed startups across five, we wanted to break down how we made it work and why online-only should not in any way deter founders from seeking funding or investors from backing new companies. Now more than ever is a time for innovation and solutions that will fundamentally help with changes to the way we live, interact and buy.

Don’t forget, if you are an early-stage founder looking for investment, submissions are open on our website right here.

Planning:

We definitely had some serious questions about how we would be able to migrate our Investment Forum into an online-only format and what it would mean from a relationship perspective, both in terms of getting to know new founders and being able to engage with our own LPs. Thankfully, with the right tech tools, team and planning, we were able to come up with an incredibly detailed operation to ensure a slick operation.

The Objective

To reduce friction in an online-only arena creating a seamless experience where multiple pre-seed founders can present their businesses, investors feel engaged and stay for the duration and our core team participates throughout, ultimately leading to us investing in multiple new companies. 

Once clear on what we wanted to achieve, we then created an incredibly detailed breakdown of roles, responsibilities and testing of the best tech tools to help us get there. 

The Tools

  • Notion – our ‘source of truth’ and THE singular place where all aspects were laid out: notes, external links, pre, during and post-event responsibilities and the agenda for the day itself.
  • Zoom – we explored multiple tech solutions for how best to make this work; from a simple Zoom call, to live YouTube stream. In the end, we settled on a Zoom Webinar, ensuring we could manage the large number of attendees coming in and out (for the different startups presenting) and reducing friction or the need to train people in how to use a new tool. It also ensured solid data capture and seamless follow-up actions, all adding to the overall experience of the event itself.
  • Telegram – this event required serious synchronisation across the entire team and speedy communication. We set up separate Telegram groups with all of the 11 startups presenting to ensure they felt supported and were clear on what they needed to do, timings for their presentation and all necessary links. 

On the day

All events, be them online or offline, have their glitches. Thankfully, the biggest issue we experienced was connectivity problems for one of the founders presenting – bring on 5G? Our team was split across founder management, tech and presenting, ensuring all elements ran as smoothly as possible and maintaining engagement levels from our LPs.

The Outcome

We’re thrilled to announce our investment in three new companies as a result of our first ever remote-only Investment Forum. These companies are tackling everything from driving better standards in carbon markets to extracting knowledge from recorded meetings and providing better medical staff profiling for career growth and research collaboration. 

Our pre-seed Investment Forum takes place every 6-8 weeks and provides highly competitive terms for founders. The next one will take place in the middle of May. If you’d like to be considered and join the likes of TransferWise, Revolut and UiPath and become part of the Seedcamp Nation then we’d love to know what you’re building right here.

We believe although the world is currently in flux, that with these sort of occurrences also comes an opportunity for great things to be built by great people and we are here to back these founders and be a part of that journey from the earliest stage on.

How we invested in three new pre-seed companies we only ever met remotely


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

A few weeks back, when the whole world changed, we knew we’d have to adapt alongside it. Slowing down or reducing our commitment to back new, early-stage founders was not an option so we had to find a way to bring the magic, energy and interactive nature of our in-person, pre-seed Investment Forum and translate it into a new, online-only experience. 

Since launching Fund IV in late 2017, we’ve introduced many new processes to help us maintain our high-volume of early-stage investments and to ensure we’re able to meet as many new European founders as possible. As part of our rolling and open submissions on our website, every 6-8 weeks we hold an ‘Investment Forum’ where we invite pre-seed companies we’ve been following and who’ve already pitched to our investment team, present in front of our own LPs. This tends to be a fast-paced, half-day affair where we have up to 15 companies from all across Europe present their business ideas in front of leading later stage investors and high-net-worths, enabling early-stage founders to get on the radar of growth funds and opening up potential syndication opportunities with some of the angel investors in the room. 

Some of our core team steering the ship during our first digital-only Investment Forum

With 35 LPs dialling in from seven different countries and presentations from 11 pre-seed startups across five, we wanted to break down how we made it work and why online-only should not in any way deter founders from seeking funding or investors from backing new companies. Now more than ever is a time for innovation and solutions that will fundamentally help with changes to the way we live, interact and buy.

Don’t forget, if you are an early-stage founder looking for investment, submissions are open on our website right here.

Planning:

We definitely had some serious questions about how we would be able to migrate our Investment Forum into an online-only format and what it would mean from a relationship perspective, both in terms of getting to know new founders and being able to engage with our own LPs. Thankfully, with the right tech tools, team and planning, we were able to come up with an incredibly detailed operation to ensure a slick operation.

The Objective

To reduce friction in an online-only arena creating a seamless experience where multiple pre-seed founders can present their businesses, investors feel engaged and stay for the duration and our core team participates throughout, ultimately leading to us investing in multiple new companies. 

Once clear on what we wanted to achieve, we then created an incredibly detailed breakdown of roles, responsibilities and testing of the best tech tools to help us get there. 

The Tools

  • Notion – our ‘source of truth’ and THE singular place where all aspects were laid out: notes, external links, pre, during and post-event responsibilities and the agenda for the day itself.
  • Zoom – we explored multiple tech solutions for how best to make this work; from a simple Zoom call, to live YouTube stream. In the end, we settled on a Zoom Webinar, ensuring we could manage the large number of attendees coming in and out (for the different startups presenting) and reducing friction or the need to train people in how to use a new tool. It also ensured solid data capture and seamless follow-up actions, all adding to the overall experience of the event itself.
  • Telegram – this event required serious synchronisation across the entire team and speedy communication. We set up separate Telegram groups with all of the 11 startups presenting to ensure they felt supported and were clear on what they needed to do, timings for their presentation and all necessary links. 

On the day

All events, be them online or offline, have their glitches. Thankfully, the biggest issue we experienced was connectivity problems for one of the founders presenting – bring on 5G? Our team was split across founder management, tech and presenting, ensuring all elements ran as smoothly as possible and maintaining engagement levels from our LPs.

The Outcome

We’re thrilled to announce our investment in three new companies as a result of our first ever remote-only Investment Forum. These companies are tackling everything from driving better standards in carbon markets to extracting knowledge from recorded meetings and providing better medical staff profiling for career growth and research collaboration. 

Our pre-seed Investment Forum takes place every 6-8 weeks and provides highly competitive terms for founders. The next one will take place in the middle of May. If you’d like to be considered and join the likes of TransferWise, Revolut and UiPath and become part of the Seedcamp Nation then we’d love to know what you’re building right here.

We believe although the world is currently in flux, that with these sort of occurrences also comes an opportunity for great things to be built by great people and we are here to back these founders and be a part of that journey from the earliest stage on.

Hop-in to the future of events as Hopin raises $6.5M


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

With some founders we meet, “the stars just perfectly align”, says our Partner Tom Wilson, and no more is that true than with our investment in Hopin, founded by Johnny Boufarhat. We’re over the moon for the team as they today announce their $6.5M seed round for their all-in-one online events platform that brings people closer by replicating the experience of offline events and makes them accessible at a global scale.

We led the pre-seed into Johnny and his vision for Hopin and the future of events in summer of 2019 and are thrilled to continue the journey and see him quickly go onto raise this highly sought after round with some of the world’s most impactful investors onboard with this round led by Accel and with participation from Northzone, WebSummit’s Amaranthine Fund and Slack Fund. The round is joined by high-profile angel investors including founder of Seedcamp-backed unicorn, UiPath, Daniel Dines, Supercell founder Ilkka Paananen, Intercom founder Des Traynor, GoCardless COO Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas and Miro founder Andrei Khusid.

Hopin founder Johnny Boufarhat

The event industry is massive, with many millions of people attending events every year. However, in a time where travel has been heavily impacted by a global health emergency and seen growing concern about its environmental impact, there is a need for a sustainable solution for attending events, that doesn’t require you to travel.

Hopin is an online venue where organizers can create, host and manage live events for up to 100,000 attendees. With Hopin’s Event Builder, it takes only a few minutes to set up an event, such as a meetup, intra-company all-hands meetings, hackathon, or conference. Each event can be built as either online-only or layered on top of an existing offline event.

We love backing founders building products that genuinely change the way we interact and we have been actively using Hopin across the many Summits and workshops we run here at Seedcamp, allowing teams based all across the world to dial in and interact with attendees, and speakers, as if they were here in person.

The idea for Hopin was born out of Founder and CEO Johnny Boufarhat’s own frustrations of not finding the right tools to collaborate and network with larger groups remotely. Hopin’s own team is fully distributed and uses the platform to connect regularly. Boufarhat said,

“Connecting people is at the core of what we do at Hopin. We want to make sure everyone can experience the same great benefits of events — the connection you made bumping into someone in a breakout session, the potential customer you met at your booth or the awesome tip you got from a panel speaker – without having to physically attend.

Built for companies and global communities that host events, Hopin is opening up the online market for larger events, such as conferences, fairs and expos, as traditional web-conferencing and event management tools aren’t built to cater to larger groups, and usually cap attendees at 1,000.

Hopin is the only platform that replicates the experience of offline events and is designed to put attendees’ ability to connect at the heart of the platform. In addition to Hopin’s main stage segment with a speakers’ live stream, attendees can join sessions which create virtual roundtables with many-to-many video-conferencing capabilities and chat features; a networking area for attendees to meet one-on-one over a video stream; and booths for businesses to showcase their products to potential customers. 

Since July last year, Hopin has been available by early access and seen incredible demand, with over 1,000 events hosted on the platform and a 10,000-strong waitlist of event organisers. With this investment, Hopin will continue to build out its platform, expand its team and quickly scale.

On the investment our Partner, Tom Wilson, comments:

“We were delighted to have the opportunity to lead Hopin’s pre-seed round and further participate alongside fantastic co-investors in this next round of funding. The market timing feels perfect for the Hopin all in one event platform and we’re really excited to be supporting the team on their journey.”

For more information and to sign up to the beta visit hopin.to

Late nights with our team in the office with Johnny

Hop-in to the future of events as Hopin raises $6.5M


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

With some founders we meet, “the stars just perfectly align”, says our Partner Tom Wilson, and no more is that true than with our investment in Hopin, founded by Johnny Boufarhat. We’re over the moon for the team as they today announce their $6.5M seed round for their all-in-one online events platform that brings people closer by replicating the experience of offline events and makes them accessible at a global scale.

We led the pre-seed into Johnny and his vision for Hopin and the future of events in summer of 2019 and are thrilled to continue the journey and see him quickly go onto raise this highly sought after round with some of the world’s most impactful investors onboard with this round led by Accel and with participation from Northzone, WebSummit’s Amaranthine Fund and Slack Fund. The round is joined by high-profile angel investors including founder of Seedcamp-backed unicorn, UiPath, Daniel Dines, Supercell founder Ilkka Paananen, Intercom founder Des Traynor, GoCardless COO Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas and Miro founder Andrei Khusid.

Hopin founder Johnny Boufarhat

The event industry is massive, with many millions of people attending events every year. However, in a time where travel has been heavily impacted by a global health emergency and seen growing concern about its environmental impact, there is a need for a sustainable solution for attending events, that doesn’t require you to travel.

Hopin is an online venue where organizers can create, host and manage live events for up to 100,000 attendees. With Hopin’s Event Builder, it takes only a few minutes to set up an event, such as a meetup, intra-company all-hands meetings, hackathon, or conference. Each event can be built as either online-only or layered on top of an existing offline event.

We love backing founders building products that genuinely change the way we interact and we have been actively using Hopin across the many Summits and workshops we run here at Seedcamp, allowing teams based all across the world to dial in and interact with attendees, and speakers, as if they were here in person.

The idea for Hopin was born out of Founder and CEO Johnny Boufarhat’s own frustrations of not finding the right tools to collaborate and network with larger groups remotely. Hopin’s own team is fully distributed and uses the platform to connect regularly. Boufarhat said,

“Connecting people is at the core of what we do at Hopin. We want to make sure everyone can experience the same great benefits of events — the connection you made bumping into someone in a breakout session, the potential customer you met at your booth or the awesome tip you got from a panel speaker – without having to physically attend.

Built for companies and global communities that host events, Hopin is opening up the online market for larger events, such as conferences, fairs and expos, as traditional web-conferencing and event management tools aren’t built to cater to larger groups, and usually cap attendees at 1,000.

Hopin is the only platform that replicates the experience of offline events and is designed to put attendees’ ability to connect at the heart of the platform. In addition to Hopin’s main stage segment with a speakers’ live stream, attendees can join sessions which create virtual roundtables with many-to-many video-conferencing capabilities and chat features; a networking area for attendees to meet one-on-one over a video stream; and booths for businesses to showcase their products to potential customers. 

Since July last year, Hopin has been available by early access and seen incredible demand, with over 1,000 events hosted on the platform and a 10,000-strong waitlist of event organisers. With this investment, Hopin will continue to build out its platform, expand its team and quickly scale.

On the investment our Partner, Tom Wilson, comments:

“We were delighted to have the opportunity to lead Hopin’s pre-seed round and further participate alongside fantastic co-investors in this next round of funding. The market timing feels perfect for the Hopin all in one event platform and we’re really excited to be supporting the team on their journey.”

For more information and to sign up to the beta visit hopin.to

Late nights with our team in the office with Johnny

Hop-in to the future of events as Hopin raises $6.5M


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

With some founders we meet, “the stars just perfectly align”, says our Partner Tom Wilson, and no more is that true than with our investment in Hopin, founded by Johnny Boufarhat. We’re over the moon for the team as they today announce their $6.5M seed round for their all-in-one online events platform that brings people closer by replicating the experience of offline events and makes them accessible at a global scale.

We led the pre-seed into Johnny and his vision for Hopin and the future of events in summer of 2019 and are thrilled to continue the journey and see him quickly go onto raise this highly sought after round with some of the world’s most impactful investors onboard with this round led by Accel and with participation from Northzone, WebSummit’s Amaranthine Fund and Slack Fund. The round is joined by high-profile angel investors including founder of Seedcamp-backed unicorn, UiPath, Daniel Dines, Supercell founder Ilkka Paananen, Intercom founder Des Traynor, GoCardless COO Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas and Miro founder Andrei Khusid.

Hopin founder Johnny Boufarhat

The event industry is massive, with many millions of people attending events every year. However, in a time where travel has been heavily impacted by a global health emergency and seen growing concern about its environmental impact, there is a need for a sustainable solution for attending events, that doesn’t require you to travel.

Hopin is an online venue where organizers can create, host and manage live events for up to 100,000 attendees. With Hopin’s Continue reading “Hop-in to the future of events as Hopin raises $6.5M”

Pointy: A tale of relationships, real innovation and why finding the right partner, in business as in life, is make or break


This post is by Natasha Lytton from Seedcamp

Pointy co-founders Mark Cummings & Charles Bibby

True entrepreneurship and success does not come overnight, and those who are truly struck with the bug to challenge the status quo and reshape staid industries are often compelled to do so again, and again. 

Yesterday Pointy, founded by Mark Cummins and Charles Bibby, announced plans for an acquisition by Google. We couldn’t be more excited for the team and there is no greater validation for the work the team have put in over the past six years. Joining forces with Google will help supercharge their growth and push them into new markets and territories in a way that wouldn’t be possible without deep pockets and wide-ranging reach.

“Seedcamp was a transformative moment”

What many of you may not know is that Pointy was not Mark and Charles’ first rodeo, nor our first interaction with them. We first met Mark at a Seedcamp week event in London in 2009. Back then, the European startup ecosystem was in its infancy and the well known Seedcamp events were very much a hub for building and connecting this emerging network of entrepreneurs with investors and seasoned operators. Mark pitched his first company, Plink, at the event and was shortlisted alongside 20 other companies including Brainient – who went on to be acquired by Teads (and whose founder we just re-invested in with his new HealthTech business, Ezra – but that’s a story for another time!)

At that Seedcamp Week event in 2009, Google met Continue reading “Pointy: A tale of relationships, real innovation and why finding the right partner, in business as in life, is make or break”

How does an early-stage investor value your startup and how can you influence it for the better?

In this post, our Managing Partner, Carlos, provides an update and further considerations for founders questioning how an early-stage investor values a startup? If you want to know how to maximize your valuation and drivers behind the boundaries of possible valuations for your company then read on!

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

In my previous post, I covered how macro and geo contexts, amongst several factors,  determine the relativistic value of a company to an investor on exit, and how traditional finance-driven valuations methods (DCF, etc) were inappropriate for early-stage startups even if some of the elements that drive those finance-driven valuation methods were still applicable, such as expected revenues. I also covered how several factors about your company can influence what valuation you might be able to achieve. To kick-off, let’s revisit those points.

The key drivers for maximizing your valuation possibilities are:

  1. Excellent metrics. As different types of

    Continue reading “How does an early-stage investor value your startup and how can you influence it for the better?”