Update from Seedcamp

from Seedcamp newsletter, www.seedcamp.com

It’s only a few weeks into 2012 and we’ve already had three Seedcamp teams announce further funding – an impressive start to the year! No doubt our newer family members will shortly be following in their footsteps, further cementing Europe’s reputation as a hub of expanding startups.

Where will 2012 take us?

We have prepared our agenda for the year, and visiting a variety of new locations is a fundamental element of Seedcamp and its mission to spot talent outside the obvious hubs. In 2010 it was Mumbai and Singapore and in 2011, New York. This year we’re excited to announce our first Seedcamp in Tallinn: with five of our teams already originating from Estonia (and a sixth joining us today!), it was only a matter of time before we decided to hop on a plane and check out the home town of the infamous #EstonianMafia!

Yearly USA Road-trip
It’s that time of year again, when we take our current and previous year’s teams and showcase them to our friends across the pond. Last year was a whirlwind of a trip, and this year we’re raising the stakes again: we will be travelling for nearly four weeks, from NYC to Boston, San Francisco and the whole Bay Area, Seattle, LA and Austin. Besides four days of mentoring (in NYC, Boston, SF and Mountain View), we will meet local startups, tech companies and investors, and connect the Seedcamp family with their counterparts in the US. If you want to meet us during the trip, let us know so we can invite you to our events plus check out the tumblr we set up for our US trip – follow to stay up to date on all our events, meetups and happenings.

  • New York – 21st February
  • Boston – 23rd February
  • San Francisco – 28th February
  • Mountain View – 1st March
  • Seedcamp Tel Aviv

We’ll be hosting Seedcamp Tel Aviv on Tuesday, 27th March in partnership with lool ventures, long-time friends and partners in crime in Israel. The partnership will go one step further than just the organisation of the event: we’ll jointly be investing in the winners, giving the startups both a local and an international support network. lool ventures is in the perfect position to offer local teams the longer-term support they require, with Seedcamp providing strong links to the US and mainland Europe. As always, we welcome applications from around the world, so if you’re a startup that’s going places, apply now!

Earlier this week we opened applications to our second Seedhack event, taking place on 30th–31st March and 1st April. We have some big and innovative partners joining us with new features and a new focus: Financial Technology. We expect to be blown away by the awesome ideas and solutions hacked together for the financial industry. If you’re a developer, apply here.

Seedcamp Day
In January we hosted lean startup guru Eric Ries and entrepreneur-turned-investor Max Niederhofer at our offices for Seedcamp Day. Both Eric and Max spoke eloquently on their experiences, and impressed everyone in attendance with their helpful attitude towards the teams’ problems. We had a larger than usual attendance, and we decided to stream the event for all our teams who weren’t able to make it to London.

Seedcamp London and our new family members
Over 100 mentors and a record 22 teams joined us on 31st January for Seedcamp London. Thanks to eOffice and Talk Talk and iStockphoto, we had a fantastic venue in the heart of Soho and, true to the area, the buzz and energy throughout the day was intense. We had a record number of applications for the event, so all the 22 teams can be immensely proud of their achievement in getting a place, and the winners even more so. We were very impressed by their shared enthusiasm, drive and ambition for their startups.

The winners were:

  • 24symbols from Madrid, Spain: One-click reading. Have instant access to eBooks on the internet with your friends for free or a fixed fee.
  • Bluefields.com from London, UK: Sports teams, organised and engaged.
  • Checkthis from Brussels, Belgium: A platform that enables anyone to instantly publish and share webpages to sell an object, write an open letter, showcase a creative project, set up a quick poll or advertise a job opening.
  • Pult from Tallinn, Estonia: The easiest way to connect your cloud services with TV screens. No cables. No cryptic setup.

Updates from our teams

We raised $1.8M from Atlas Venture and Credo Ventures.

We raised Series A $4M: Matrix led the round; David Skok will join the board of directors. User numbers have grown from 6000 to 80,000 in the last six months.

An online service that automatically keeps your address book updated, WriteThat.name is getting a lot of traction right now, which has helped tremendously with our Series A funding!

Olympics fever has hit at Crashpadder HQ! January revenue was up by more than 100% compared with the previous month. Furthermore, we’ve had 300 new hosts sign up in 48 hours thanks to a piece in the Evening Standard. We’re appearing in programmes about the London Olympics (interviews with us and with hosts) that are being broadcast nationally in France (via France 3) and Germany (via RTL).

Stephen has launched Failboat London, with the first event on 15th February. It’s a meet-up for London startups to connect, get out of pitch mode, share their biggest mistakes and learn from one another. A strict no-VC, no-press policy should help everyone feel confident about sharing even their biggest mistakes.

Spent 2011 putting “but better” into “like spreadsheets, but better”. Our focus was on getting customers to pay us to do product development as we concentrated on the VALUE proposition. Now that we have crossed the magic six figures with $100,000 in cumulative income, we will be switching to working on the GROWTH proposition for 2012.

Robot Media
Robot Media received its second consecutive Publishing Innovation Award at Digital Book World New York, and debuted its new website design to celebrate: http://www.robotmedia.net/

January, as usual, brought a boom in recruitment! Responding to the rise in the recruitment of developers for mobile platforms, we have just added support for two more programming languages: Objective-C and Lua.

Compilr has completely redesigned its website to make it easier for developers to write code directly from their web browser.

TransferWise is kicking off the new year by launching a completely new website and expanding the team – one marketing person just joined and staffing will be up in customer support next. Goals for the year include extending our selection of currencies; we hope to share more about this soon.

Campalyst launched the Campalyst social media management suite, which helps brands manage their Facebook and Twitter properties and is fully integrated with Campalyst’s core analytics product. One write-up is here.

Holvi has just launched its new service to a small set of pilots, allowing them to do full budgeting and invoicing and to collect income for their projects. One project is the most important media/art event in Jyväskylä, Finland: Instanssi. The other is a big event put together by the major entrepreneurship associations in southern Finland: HotSpot2012. Last December we helped Mike Bradshaw collect over 2000 euros in just a few days for his crazy trip to Le Web, towing a 1.7-tonne fully-operational sauna all the way to Paris!

Upcoming Events

27 March – Seedcamp Tel Aviv

30, 31 March & 1 April – Seedhack FinTech