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Flywire to IPO. Sherpa raises $8.5m. Freshly Cosmetics €30m business.

March 22, 2021 • Issue #260

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Startup funding news 💸

  • Bilbao-based raised $8.5m from Mundi Ventures, Orza and other new investors
  • A Coruña-based pet platform Barkibu raised $5.6m from The Venture City, Mundi Ventures and others
  • Madrid-based startup Aqui Tu Reforma raised €3m, led by Seaya Ventures
  • Barcelona-based telco Parlem Telecom raised €3m from Inveready and plans to float on the BME Growth
  • Barcelona-based real estate company Brickbro raised €1m, led by THCAP
  • Madrid-based furniture-as-a-service startup Rentchester raised €750k, led by Faraday
  • Other rounds of funding: Gazoom, Bcome, Fazil, Entrii

M&A activity 🎊

  • Flywire, the fintech payments company with headquarters in Boston and Valencia, has hired investment banks to prepare for a US IPO later this year that could value the payments processor at around $3b. This is great news for the Spanish startup ecosystem. According to La Informacion, Kibo Ventures remains a shareholder of the company, as well as some of the company's first business angels, who could see big returns from the IPO
  • Swedish UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service) company, Telavox, acquired Spanish cloud-based communication company Numintec

Investor & accelerator news 🚀

  • Ship2B, EIF and Banco Sabadell to launch BSocial Impact Fund, a €45m fund to invest in social impact projects
  • Bewater Funds disclosed in a post the return on their investment on Gana Energia, the energy company acquired by Repsol two weeks ago. Bewater Funds says that the investment resulted in an IRR of 158%
  • K Fund participated in the $6.5m Series A round of NYC-based HR startup Fetcher
  • Robert Muñoz and David Okuniev, co-founders of Typeform, participated as business angels in the Series A round of video product Whereby
  • Jordi Altimira at UpBizor wrote about the case of eSports startup United Gamers and the positive impact that FFF rounds can have on the development of a company
  • Casavo is an Italian real estate company that announced a €200m funding round that includes the participation of Spanish VC firm Bonsai Partners
  • El Referente interviewed Josean Rodriguez of startup event CITA Emprende. The interview focuses on the upcoming 2021 edition of the event and what they do to bring startups and SMBs/corporates together

Startup news 💡

  • elDiario profiled Freshly Cosmetics, a Catalan ecommerce company that in five years has reached sales of €30m with no external funding, with a gross margin of 60%
  • Magic Bell is a Barcelona-based startup that has participated in Y Combinator's latest batch. The company published an article about their experience participating in YC's remote batch and also publicly shared their YC application form
  • Juan de Antonio, Cabify's CEO, was interviewed by Sifted. The interview mostly focuses on the labour conditions of Cabify's drivers. Juan says that, contrary to what other companies do, most of Cabify's drivers are employed by Vector Ronda, a VTC company in which Cabify acquired a majority stake. The situation in Latam is not the same, and there Cabify employs gig workers. Uber also recently acquired a 30% stake in a different Spanish VTC company, Moove Cars
  • Also on the topic of labor conditions, Business Insider interviewed Mox's country manager Jaume Boada. Mox offers last mile delivery services in urban environments with fully employed riders, the opposite of Glovo, Deliveroo and others
  • Uber is back in Barcelona after mote than two years of inactivity
  • Wallbox, the startup that manufactures intelligent charging solutions for electric vehicles, plans to open a 12k square meter plant in Barcelona
  • In an interview, Wetaca CEO Andres Casal says that the foodtech company expects to reach €13m in sales this year, up from around €7.2m last year
  • Cinco Dias published the 2019 financials of Movo, the electric bike and e-scooter division of Cabify. Movo increased revenues by ten, two €1.8m and posted a loss of €3.5m
  • Another interview, this time with Javier Escribano, co-founder of Ontruck. In the interview, Javier talks about the recent launch of their 24 hour service and other topics
  • Cinco Dias wrote a small profile of Finalbion, a Spanish fintech startup that provides lending and working capital to SMEs. According to the article, since its founding date Finalbion has provided more than €1.6b in loans and advancements to startups
  • Startups' Oasis interviewed Bernat Ripoll, co-founder of Holded. He says that they plan to double down in France, increase its employee base by two and increase users of its software from 80k right now to more than 120k by the end of the year
  • Diego Arroyo, co-founder of fashion brand laagam, published a screenshot showing the correlation between a decrease in stock and an increase in total sales, which reached €100k in the month of March
  • ATH21 is the first Spanish legal boutique focused on cypto and the blockchain. The firm is co-founded by Cristina Carrascosa and Luis Gosalbez (Metricson)
  • El Referente published a list of 20 foodtech startups to keep an eye on in 2021
  • El Confidencial published an article about the externalities caused by virtual kitchens and complaints from inhabitants of various Barcelona neighborhoods
  • Startup profiles: Cluber, Pulpo, Calsens, Vottun

Big company news 🏦

  • Glenn Fogel, CEO of Booking, gave an interview to El Economista to talk about their current situation. In the interview, Glenn encourages the Spanish government to look for solutions to quickly reactive the tourism sector
  • Here's an update on Bizum's numbers: 14.7m active users and more than 10k businesses now accept Bizum payments
  • In 2020, Fashion brand Bimba y Lola saw a decrease in sales of 27%, while online sales increased by 66% to €56m

Interesting reads 🤓

  • Miguel Carranza, co-founder and CTO of RevenueCat, gave a presentation at SaaStr to talk about 'top 10 learnings architecting a high throughput critical API'
  • Tinybird interviewed Jane Yang, head of data and policy at Basecamp
  • Samuel Gil of JME wrote about the work of Carlota Perez, author of 'Revoluciones tecnológicas y capital financiero'
  • David Bonilla of Manfred wrote about what certain countries and cities are doing to attract not only foreign companies, but also workers in a remote-friendly world
  • Various EU member countries published and approved the 'Startup Nations Standard of Excellence'. Percival Manglano wrote about how this declaration could impact Spain's Startup Law

Podcasts 🎧

  • K Fund interviewed Pablo Viguera (Belvo) and Miguel Carranza (RevenueCat) about their experience going through Y Combinator
  • Gananzia interviewed Txarly Sanchez, now at Voicemod
  • Jan Brinckmann (Esade) interviewed David Casellas, co-founder and CEO of Pridatect
  • Hablando con Lideres interviewed Carlos Costa, formerly of BCG and also COO of Mango
  • Lanzadera interviewed Bernardo Hernandez (Google, Flickr, Verse)
  • Itnig interviewed Eduardo Azanza, co-founder of Veridas
  • interviewed Eduardo Manchon, CEO of Mailtrack