2018 in Review

It’s a wrap for 2018. But while 2019 is already in full swing, there is still time to take one last look back at 2018 and see what was the overall outlook for the year and what were the key highlights for my portfolio companies.


Key figures

Screened startups: 800+
New investments: 4
Follow-up investments: 3
Exits: 0
IRR: 29%


Investments and Exits

The investment front was quite active in 2018. Thus, four new companies were added to the portfolio: PromoRepublic, Screenful, Seaber, and SportaPost. In addition, three follow-up investments were made. The year 2018 saw no exits.


Highlights from the Portfolio Companies


New Products and Segments

LiiD introduced its second-generation product, Salestrail, in 2018. Salestrail is an AI-powered smartphone app to improve sales performance. The new version of PromoRepublic of was released in order to bring benefits through the use of AI to its users. Also, PromoRepublic released agency product to target agencies and freelancers. First consumer products made with ingredients produced by Innomost reached the market in 2018. With the acquisition of 50% of Kasvun Roihu, Innovestor added growth acceleration services to its solutions offering.


360Visualizer expanded beyond its traditional customer segments by entering into the cruise line market with a deal with Viking Line. ContractZen was able to secure a great opportunity as Microsoft selected the service to be one of the 20 solutions to be sold by Microsoft and its distributors to the end customers.


International Expansion

EkoRent expanded its operations into Africa by opening the Nopia Ride electric mobility service in Nairobi. OGOShip expanded its operations into Sweden by opening a warehouse under partnership model in Gothenburg.


Mergers and Acquisitions

Innovestor acquired 50% of Kasvun Roihu. Cityvarasto acquired a majority stake in van rental company Pakuovelle.com.


Recognitions

Innomost won the Uusi Puu Award in the category of Changing Population Structure. OGOship was accepted into Smart Mobility program by Business Finland. Screenful won the Artic15 funding program. Kasvu Open, a growth program run by Kasvun Roihu of Innovestor Group, received the Internationalization Award of the President of the Republic.


Funding Rounds

PromoRepublic secured funding from European angel investors and VCs to accelerate growth. Screenful won the Artic15 received an investment from the Nordic Angel Program syndicate and a VC. Seaber received pre-seed funding in spring in order to build MVP and conduct client pilots. SportaPost closed pre-seed round from angel investors after the summer.


Conclusion

The year 2018 saw a lot of positive development in my portfolio. Hopefully, 2019 sees more of the same as well.


For the year 2019, I am expecting the investment side continue active in terms of both new investments as well as A-rounds for my current portfolio companies. And as the portfolio matures, 2019 might also see more activity in the exit side as well. 

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