Singapore-managed seed capital fund Javelin Startup-O Victory Fund has announced its investments in two startups: Serv.sg, a SaaS platform for home services, and HackerTrail, a recruitment startup for tech talent.
These new investees brings its portfolio of Singapore startups to four. Previously, the fund made investments in Whizpace, a startup that provides faster-than-normal-Wi-Fi connections using TV White Space (TVWS) solutions, and impress.ai, an AI platform that helps employers screen candidates.
In addition, UK e-wallet startup Paidup.io will also receive funding. The company, which serves emerging markets such as the Philippines, is now re-incorporated in Singapore to better serve its target demographics.
“Paidup is in the midst of completing a business restructure to relocate Singapore which is a prerequisite, but deal terms are agreed and working capital is advanced,” said Anuj Jain, Co-Founder & CEO, Startup-O.
The fund did not disclose the funding value, but it stated that it invests up to US$500,000 in 3 to 5 startups per quarter.
Since November last year, 308 tech startups from 12 countries & 15 nationalities have registered on Startup-O. They are then put through a 10-week online curation program called Startup-O Fasttrack.
Each startup is rated using an algorithm that takes into account 108 parameters. They are also vetted by a team of up to 8 experts in four stages.
“Each expert completes a defined framework of data capture which feeds our proprietary rating algorithms to enable unbiased curation of most promising startups per cohort,” Jain told e27.
This data-enabled process ensures that all decision making is transparent and thus reduces the risk for investors — who consist of family offices and high net worth investors.
Jain said that its post investment processes range from weekly mentoring, monthly reconciliation and quarterly board level discussions.
“We have designated and experienced ‘Entrepreneurs in Residence’ who help in venture building with help of our ‘Experts Collective’,” he said.
“Our experienced panel of experts who are seasoned entrepreneurs and domain experts get involved with the investee startups to open the doors at various levels for these proven tech ventures. This helps move the needle and builds the all-important traction for investee companies,” added Jain.
One important factor to note about Javelin Startup-O Victory Fund is that, unlike accelerators, it does not do any upfront dilution.
“This leaves startup founders in control of their startups and have an experiential learning journey on our platform, which allows them a chance to connect with global experts and seed funding,” said Jain.
Startup-O is now accepting applications for its fourth cohort in August 2017. Going forward, Jain explained that the fund’s long term goal consists of three parts:
1. To be a ‘Go To Platform’ for startups especially in Southeast Asia;
2. To serve its investors with a well curated diversified portfolio of about 75-100 companies in 5 years;
3. To focus on venture building with investee companies and help them scale across geographies with help of its Experts Collective.
That being said, Jain said the platform is open to tech entrepreneurs across the globe, as long as they prove their mettle.
Image Credit: Javelin Startup-O Victory Fund
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