Singapore-based global early-stage VC firm Antler announced on Thursday that it has kicked off its Q2, 2022, in Berlin with its Portfolio Reveal Day. As part of the second Berlin cohort, eight teams took to the stage to showcase their innovations.
These startups are addressing big challenges across sectors including medtech, mental health/psychedelics, HRtech, cleantech, clean energy, cybersecurity, and the creator economy.
Christoph Klink, Partner at Antler, says, “One of our fundamental beliefs is that talent is global, we have thus established a global platform to work with the most talented founders across the globe. While we back founders for the long-run, we are typically the first investors in their ventures and get to tag along their journey from the very beginning. The 8 newest additions represent a great mix of highly experienced and talented founders from diverse backgrounds.”
“Investing in exceptional people”
Founded in 2017 by Magnus Grimeland and a team of experienced entrepreneurs, investors, and company builders, Antler is an early-stage VC firm with the vision to fundamentally improve the world. The VC says that its aim is to create thousands of companies globally that solve ‘real’ problems.
So far, Antler has invested in and helped build over 400 companies in 30+ different sectors. Of these companies, 35 per cent have at least one female co-founder, and the founders represent 70 nationalities across its 21 offices. Antler has offices globally across most major entrepreneurial hubs, including London, Berlin, Stockholm, New York, Singapore, and Sydney.
Portfolio Reveal Day in Berlin
The Portfolio Reveal Day is an important event for Antler and its portfolio companies alike. As part of the reveal, the founders presented their ventures to an audience of more than 2,000 people.
Attendees included investors, advisors, tech enthusiasts, and executives. Besides showcasing their businesses, the teams also took part in an interactive Q&A session, where they did a deep dive into their products, customer insights, as well as delved into the founders’ inspirations to build their companies.
Alan Poensgen, Partner at Antler, says, “This has been a very exciting journey for us at Antler, seeing the co-founding teams form and their ventures grow. At the beginning of this cohort, we had the chance to embark on a journey with over 50 carefully selected founders. To experience the energy, see amazing products come to life and work with founders as they move from 0 to 1 has been a great experience. Founders in this cohort are building companies in spaces that I personally find very exciting – many are addressing issues that are very challenging and where technology can make a real difference.”
The eight portfolio companies were the product of the Antler process where more than 100,000 founders apply to join one of Antler’s cohorts per year. After hundreds of hours of interviews, 50 founders were selected to join the Berlin Fall 2021 cohort. These founders came at the beginning of October, 2021, and the Antler team worked closely with the founders to support them in forming strong and stable co-founding teams, refining their value propositions, and validating their business model before investing in eight of the emerging teams.
Here are Antler’s 8 portfolio companies in Berlin
Founder(s): Gina Xydias Charmanta, Muhammad Ali Khan, George Kyriakopoulos
ApoFox is a medtech startup that simplifies and enhances the healthcare experience for chronic care patients. It is the connected care platform for ordering presorted medication into daily pill-packs, monitoring health symptoms, and gaining instant access to expert health guidance.
The startup will expand through a suite of digital health products that vertically integrate distinct and currently fragmented layers of the healthcare value chain such as medication plans, health check-ups and insights, medical expertise and healthcare system navigation, pharmaceutical and insurance collaborations.
Founder(s): René Haas, Silvain Toromanoff
NeoCarbon is a cleantech startup that builds and markets the technology for Direct Air Capture (DAC), capturing CO2 directly from the air. The startup claims that DAC is the only technology that enables removing carbon on the scale needed to slow down, stop and reverse global warming. However, today’s DAC systems are too expensive and time-consuming to build. NeoCarbon uses existing infrastructure in the form of cooling towers to perform Direct Air Capture at up to 10X lower costs and time, which makes the technology mass-market ready.
Founder(s): Kilian Martin, Maros Mastrak
Physikit is a medtech startup that claims to be the missing puzzle piece to easily implement blood testing in eHealth.
Obtaining biochemical data in a traditional way (like going to a doctor or to the hospital) breaks the user experience of eHealth. According to Physikit, the solution that will enable a ‘seamless’ user experience and unlock the next generation of eHealth is the at-home collection of body fluids, such as blood, saliva, and urine. However, at-home sample collection seems a bit complicated due to coordination with labs, finding the ‘best’ test kits, taking care of logistics and integrating with legacy IT systems. This is where Physikit steps in.
The startup provides eHealth companies with an Application Programming Interface (API) and takes care of all of the above components of the at-home sample collection process in one single service.
Founder(s): Mikhail Bragin, Maycon Santos
Netbird (previously, Wiretrustee) is a cybersecurity company that is building an open-source platform to simplify the deployment and management of corporate Virtual Private Networks (VPNs). According to the startup, a VPN is a crucial tool for helping businesses address the security concerns of remote work, but implementation remains challenging.
This is where Netbird looks to make a difference. The platform is using an approach to network access and security that blends the ‘best’ of the VPN with Zero Trust principles and a mesh design. Its technology enables secure access for any kind of user (human or machine) that is easy to manage and scale.
Founder(s): Joann Jeong, Robin Miguel Betz
Jetty is an HRtech startup that is looking to change the current hiring practice which it believes is an emotional black-box for candidates: anxiety due to uncertainty, being left behind in the process, and rarely receiving feedback. Jetty wants to change this. The company offers a product that is a no-code web tool for talent teams to build hiring portals for candidates.
The hiring portals are dynamic and offer candidates visibility into the hiring process, guidance on the interview steps, and insights into the role and company. Talent teams can increase talent engagement, gain data-driven insights into hiring practices, and ultimately win over more talent.
Jetty syncs with established hiring tools, so candidates have a centralised location to manage all their hiring processes, gain intel, and engage with hiring teams.
Founder(s): Luis del Rio Francos, Timo Juritsch
Clean energy company Peak Power is building a distributed energy balancing system by enabling smart and flexible usage of energy assets. Its time-series forecasting LSTM neural network provides market insights as a basis for data-supported, operational decision-making.
The startup helps to control and steer a smart network of distributed storage assets that reacts to energy-grid imbalances, stores excess energy from renewable energy sources and feeds energy back into the grid when it is most needed.
Peak Power claims to optimise asset economics and at the same time contribute to the energy transition by the accelerated deployment of renewables into the energy mix.
Founder(s): Katie Kong, Louise Rossetti Ogibowski, Diana De Castro
With the growth of social media, there are more than 50 million creators out there today. The majority of these creators are looking for ways to create more relevant products and monetise their audience. This is where Indigo Hub is looking to play its part.
The platform helps creators become entrepreneurs and launch their own physical products. The offering also covers sourcing suppliers, marketing and logistics services, as well as a shopfront that can be set up in minutes. Besides, the platform also guides creators along the journey with learning tools.
Founder(s): Rafael Alain Rolli, Federico Jara Crua, Carlo Metz
infinit Bio manufactures psychedelics through biosynthesis. Building the first, in-vitro (cell-free) biomanufacturing platform allows infinit Bio to unchain psychedelic therapy developers from the old pharma supply- and value-chain.
First, the team is focusing on producing natural psychedelics, such as the ones found in magic mushrooms. As infinit Bio expands its platform further, it will be able to contract-manufacture proprietary psychedelic molecules.
Currently, the company is building a GMP-compliant facility to supply the ‘highest-quality’ medicinal compounds to compassionate use programmes, clinical research organisations, and psychedelic therapy developers.
The latest Berlin founder cohort is part of Antler’s commitment to investing in founders across the DACH region as well as Eastern Europe, and back companies in areas where technology can make a true difference.
According to the firm, entrepreneurs from DACH and Eastern Europe can apply twice a year to join Antler in Berlin. Selected founders will have the opportunity to find diverse and high-calibre co-founder(s), coaching by experienced entrepreneurs, and access to a global network of 600+ top-tier advisors. Besides, Antler also provides pre-Seed investment to the best teams.
Apply here for Antler’s next cohort in Berlin.