August closes with only six investment rounds and a cumulative €13.52M in investment, a very low figure that causes a drop in investment in startups in Spain at the end of the eighth month of the year. Especially when compared to the end of the same month in 2018, when the Letgo round catapulted investments of the year and took it to historic highs (last August closed with 8 public operations and a cumulative €439.35 million thanks to the round of the giant Letgo).
Regarding the accumulated annual investment in 2019, it reached €620.26 million, a positive figure and that would be equivalent to 2018 excluding the round of Letgo mentioned above (August 2018 closed with €1,059.30 million but without the round above we would be talking about €628.50 million in a total of 7 transactions).
Of the six investment rounds closed this past month, the 11 million Euro round announced by Exoticca stands out, in which Kibo Ventures, K-Fund and Bonsai, Milano Investment Partners participated and which was the main operation of the month of August. The second outstanding round by amount was that of 1MillionBot, which closed a financing round of 1.5 million Euro. All its investors are clients or belong to the Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Virtual Assistants sectors.
AUGUST 2019 OPERATIONS
Exoticca: The online platform specializing in long-distance travel has closed a financing round of 11 million Euro. The operation was led by Milano Investment Partners and included other investors such as Kibo Ventures, K-Fund and Bonsai. In the case of Kibo Ventures and Bonsai, this is the first time they have invested in the Catalan company, while K-Fund and Bonsai were already in the capital.
With regard to Banco Sabadell, although it did not attend the round, it participated through Venture Capital and BStartup, becoming the second largest shareholder of the company. In April, Exoticca closed a 2 million Euro financing round with the leadership of Harbert European Growth Capital, thus complementing the 3.5 million Euro capital round that closed in May 2018 with K Fund and Sabadell Venture Capital.
1MillionBot: has successfully closed a €1.5 million round of funding. All the investors in the round are clients or belong to the Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Virtual Assistants (chatbots) sectors, which gives the operation a special character for not having resorted to any investment funds. The value of the company after the round increases to 8.2 million Euro.
1MillionBot develops chatbots that can interact with the user, both through text and voice messages, with 90% accuracy in responses. The universities of Murcia, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia and Universidad Complutense de Madrid, already have the chatbots of 1MillonBot to help with the creation of their registrations. 15 other Spanish universities that have the chatbots in the process of preparation will be added to that list.
Wetaca: Bewater Funds continues to provide liquidity to the entrepreneurs. For the seventh time, the company chosen was Wetaca. The small capital increase was 420 thousand Euro, being the second co-investment with Renta 4 Bewater I FCR. Bewater Funds have decided to invest in Wetaca because they see a real possibility of building one of the leaders in Spain and Continental Europe in the business of home delivery of prepared food.
The objective of this round for Wetaca is to invest the money in expanding its operations throughout Spain as most of its sales are concentrated in Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia. Additionally, Wetaca has the possibility to start an international expansion by sending food out of Spain from its current warehouses to improve its margin as it buys more from its suppliers.
HolaHome: HolaHome has closed its second round of financing for an amount of 300,000 Euro. The operation has been subscribed by Gia Gia Innovación SL, a company dedicated to innovation in the real estate sector. The incorporation of this new round of financing, by 20% of the shareholders, represents a new stage of growth and development.
After the closing of this new round, the startup has formed a Board of Directors, constituted and integrated by its founders, Adolfo Tannenbaum and Anna Ruiz-Pericacho, representatives of the investors with a member representing Gia Gia Innovación SL, Joan Maria Feliu and Jordi Sánchez, and an independent director, Xavier Argenté.
In the first half of 2019, since its market launch, HolaHome has increased the number of users by 350% to 700 today. Thanks to its exponential growth, they have proposed to increase the property database and reach 3,000 registrations by the end of this year.
Agerpix Technologies SL.: the subsidiary of the Soria company Codesian Software Tech has closed a round of 270,000 Euro with the support of Soria Futuro, Sodical and Caja Rural de Soria. With the closing of this investment, the startup plans to accelerate the development of the recently launched business plan, which includes international expansion focused especially in the United States and South America.
At present, the company in the agrotech sector is in the service commercialization phase, with a client portfolio in 4 countries: Spain, Portugal, France and Peru. The main aim of the startup based in Gomayo, Soria is to provide key information to fruit producers for better decision-making regarding crop predictions, thanks to the use of precision farming systems based on artificial vision and algorithms.
Micro Ventures, S.L.: the startup, promoter of “TuSpeaking”, has obtained a participative loan of 30,000 Euro, extendable to 60,000 Euro, granted by Sodena, the public company of the Government of Navarre. “TuSpeaking” is an English e-learning platform aimed at companies, institutions and professionals that exploits an innovative ‘on-demand’ learning method.
Thanks to this credit and the 70,000 Euro of additional bank financing obtained by the company, Micro Ventures will be able to complete an R&D&I project on which it has been working since 2018 together with the UPNA, as well as hiring new staff.
The project will offer students virtual experiences of learning the English language. Along the same lines, it plans to launch an intelligent application (Chatbot) this year that will allow users to simulate a real spoken conversation, through a mobile device, and in different scenarios.