US heavyweight Sequoia has announced 17 European companies in the initial phase of its inaugural group Arc . startup acceleratorStarting on Monday,.
The eight-week program will run through July 15, and give participants time with some of Europe’s top founders and operators to enhance their company building skills. Additionally, Sequoia will invest $1 million up front in each selected startup.
The accelerator forms part of a larger trend of venture capitalists looking to forge relationships with early-stage companies through angel and scout programs (Sequoia also has a Scout program in Europe). Sequoia is invested from seed all the way to the late stage.
For Sequoia, building relationships with companies from their early days is especially important. “Our business is built on the idea of trying to find people as soon as possible and work with them for as long as possible,” Sequoia Partner George Robson explains.
One of the questions that often arises when venture capital invests in companies through programs like this is whether they will put more money in later rounds. Some founders say it could send a negative signal if they don’t follow through with VC.
Robson says Sequoia is considering the accelerator program “in this context to try to build a lasting relationship,” noting the fact that Sequoia often participates in multiple rounds of companies en route to public listing. “We think there is an advantage that indicates companies that are involved in Arc,” he says.
Despite the various sources of instability affecting the market, Robson says Sequoia’s advice is to “encourage [the startups] To focus on the factors they can control within the building, by investing in the research and development behind their products, [and] Think carefully about the channels that work for them.”
The group hails from 13 countries and includes 33 founders from across Europe, including six female founders. Members of this group come from “all walks of life,” including founders with immigrant and refugee backgrounds. The companies selected cover a wide range of fields, from artificial intelligence to educational technology.
So, what companies made up the first group? Two companies in stealth are not included in this list.
- Senitive Synative uses the latest AI research to support companies creating computer vision solutions to train models and create high-quality images.
- telescope Using advanced machine learning, Telescope acts as a B2B sales assistant that can monitor and generate communication emails and close deals through the use of machine learning.
- twin Twain is a free extension for Google Chrome that acts as a virtual sales coach. By taking advantage of natural language generation, Twain hopes to help salespeople communicate more effectively.
- Akiro Cyber security is becoming more and more urgent and important, and this is where Akeero comes in. The Security Design Platform empowers teams to collaboratively build secure applications for cloud products.
- Basel Serverless architecture offers software engineers greater scalability and flexibility – but this brave new world is also very complex. Baselime hopes to help developers better understand and use a serverless architecture through its system of automated dashboards and alerts.
- a gun Startups want to get the most out of their data, but in reality the data is stored and processed in a fragmented way. Calliper seeks to change this by providing a plug-and-play task control center that brings all operational data in one place, highlighting the most important ideas.
- CreatorSpace Finding the right collaborators can be difficult, and it is easy to end up falling back into old university networks and local groups. CreatorSpace wants to change this by helping engineers, designers, and content creators find collaborators with the right skills and interests to work together.
- vids Munich-based Fides seeks to digitize corporate compliance by building an all-in-one management governance platform, which also provides a secure audit trail for businesses.
- Popsync Headquartered in Munich and Paris, Popsink aims to build innovative data tools to create real-time data functionality for continuous operations, without the hassles of scripting.
- RevMap RevMap is on a mission to fix the product sales feedback loop and help companies find the right product for the market faster. Through team play, the platform seeks to encourage more collaboration between sales teams and the product.
- Surin The Berlin-based platform enables small businesses to choose the right level of insurance, by providing personalized recommendations through its automated advisor.
emerging consumer companies
- Choices (no website) – Whether it’s choosing which Netflix movies to watch, or deciding which AirBnB to book, consumers today face a “paradox of choice”. Choice Options wants to help consumers discover movies, music, and destinations they might enjoy, while using responsible algorithms.
- studio The London-based education technology company wants to make quality education more accessible to students. Together, their apps bundle short videos from teachers, practice quizzes, flashcards and a community forum, and are intended to encourage more efficient learning.
- Zelda – Payment application eliminates the hassle of paying through the card machine. The app enables people to send and receive money simply by scanning QR codes on their phones.
- Auto Finance The London-based platform wants to make financial support services available to both employers and employees. Otto, through its training and educational resource package, strives to give employees more control over their financial health.
Sophie Zhang is the Editorial Assistant at Sifted. They help write Sifted’s flagship newsletter. Could you Register here.