Pre-seed investment firm HackFwd is now looking to invest in Greek web start-ups
HackFwd, a pre-seed investment firm based in Germany, is now accepting business plans from Greek start-ups looking for funding up to €191.000 (depending on the number of founders)! The founder of HackFwd is Lars Hinrichs. Lars is also the founder and ex-CEO of Xing (the first European IPO in the Web 2.0 era) and has been named 'Young Global Leader' by the World Economic Forum. Other HackFwd team members include Jean Paul Schmetz (Advisor, Hubert Burda Media), Marco Börries (Founder, StarOffice a.k.a. OpenOffice) and Michael Jackson (ex-COO, Skype). A dynamic group of people with extensive experience in the internet sector.
How is HackFwd different from other investment firms? To get funding from HackFwd you have to go through a Referrer. HackFwd Referrers are experts in their fields and eminent start-up or technology figures in their areas. They are based in different European countries and act as a 'liaison' between the firm and the interested startupers. When a Referrer feels that a particular proposal matches the HackFwd investment philosophy, he or she refers it to the firm who ultimately decides whether to go through with the investment or not. There are currently 22 Referrers throughout Europe, from Norway to Finland, Croatia and Italy.
Since June 2011, HackFwd Referrers add up to 23. Mr Dimitris Kalavros-Gousiou, founder of Online Media Away.gr (away.gr) and TEDxAthens curator (www.tedxathens.com) has taken over as a HackFwd Referrer for Greece and SouthEast Europe (focusing on countries where HackFwd is not represented by a Referrer). This is particularly good news since Greece is now the second mediterranean country, after Italy, in which HackFwd places a Referrer. David Bizer, HackFwd Talent Geek, responsible also for the firm's Referrers Program, stated: “Even though we are aware of the difficult times Greece is going through, history has shown that some of the major companies are born during hardships. Here at HackFwd we are excited with the Greek potential, quality and talent as well as with the opportunity to build some great Greek start-ups.”
During its first year (founded June 2010), HackFwd invested in 9 start-ups from Germany, Austria, France and the UK.
Transparency is one of HackFwd's investment process biggest advantages. Interested parties are granted immediate access to the agreement to be signed if the investment goes through. The agreement is entitled "The Geek Agreement" and may be downloaded here. They may also get detailed information here with regard to what HackFwd is asking for/ offering its funded start-ups.