#3/2020

“There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in.”
• Desmond Tutu

Presto News

We are proud to announce new investments in Genster (forbes.cz) and Sens (forbes.cz)
  • Genster is an online personal styling service for men, with personalised shopping experience and clothes delivery.
  • Sens produces healthy and sustainable food products using cricket flour from their own farm, which is the biggest cricket farm in the world.
  • Congratulations to Genster founders Michaela and Ryan and Sens founders Daniel and Radek, we look forward to cooperating on these investments with you as well as angel investor Vojta Roček, Reflex Capital and UP21.

Deals

Berlin-based scoutbee raises €54.1 million to expand its AI-driven supplier discovery suite (eu-startups.com)
  • Aims to help the right purchasers and the right suppliers connect, anywhere in the world, by delivering procurement teams a smarter supplier discovery suite.
  • Scoutbee has raised $4 million in seed round in November 2018, then in June 2019 raised $12 million.
  • Opinion: This is a great success for a startup if it is raising money to have enough for 18 months and twice raises 6 months after previous round. This shows that the startup found quick product-market fit and probably became the best solution on the market.

News

How'd Active Funds Do in 2019? So-So (morningstar.com) + ‘Quant winter’ raises tricky questions for a hot industry (ft.com)
  • Around 40% of active funds beat their indexes last year, a slight improvement from 2018. 
  • Only 29% of stock funds surpassed their benchmarks after fees.
  • Only 15% of quant funds beat the US stock market last year.

Reading

What is a Best in Class Payback Period for a Software Company in 2020? (tomtunguz.com)
  • Payback period reflects amount of time a customer repays the cost of customer acquisition with gross profit dollars. Startups with shorter payback periods require less capital and also grow more quickly.
  • The top quartile is 15 months; the median is 22 months; and the bottom quartile is 29 months. For most companies this wasn’t always as long as this but increased when they matured.
  • Starting with a low ACV enables a company to expand accounts significantly. More importantly, it requires the company establish an efficient go-to-market from the outset; a discipline that benefits the business throughout its life.

Nobody Makes Money Like Apollo’s Ruthless Founder Leon Black (bloomberg.com)
  • Built his company by buying struggling businesses with huge piles of debt at bargain-basement prices, imposing austerity measures on the staff, and extracting huge dividend payments and management fees.
  • Black was a philosophy major. One morning during Black’s second year at Harvard, his father arrived at work, used his briefcase to smash the window of his 44th floor office, and jumped to his death.
  • Apollo’s flagship private equity fund, which it opened to investors in 2001, has delivered annual returns of 44%.

Green Energy Market Map by USV (docs.google.com)
  • Buying renewable power is a high-confusion market with a real opportunity to build a trusted voice/brand.
  • Energy storage is the holy grail for renewables and a more decentralized grid but it is prohibitively expensive today.
  • All-in-one carbon offset platform (marketplace) that will be the single player between energy developers and end users is the future.


   

In case you are interested in helping us with evaluating some companies and industries or you just want to discus any of these articles, feel free to reach out to Roman from Presto Ventures at roman@prestoventures.com or Linkedin.

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