Tulla Group’s Kevin Maloney, Chasing Growth in Australia
CapitalPitch, an funding platform in Australia that helps startups connect with VC (venture capital) money, has begun raising at least A$10-M for its own fund to co-invest in early-stage Australia ventures that raise money through its website.
The new CapitalPitch Venture Fund is partnered with the high-net-worth Maloney Family through the Tulla Group and angel investor Trevor Folsom’s Club Investible.
Pictured above: Jeremy Liddle,Capital Pitch; Trevor Folsom. Investible; Emlyn Scott, CapitalPitch and Tulla Group Chairman Kevin Maloney are joining the hunt for Australian tech startup investments.
Monday, Jeremy Liddle, CapitalPitch co-founder, said the fund is in discussions with a super-annuation fund and foreign investors who are interested in backing it.
“We are looking for it to be a minimum of A$10-M and we’re going to market now to see exactly how big it can be.
We are willing to go much larger than A$10-M and we estimate the rounds we will work on will be about $1-M and we’ll go in for 15%.”
At this rate, at the lowest end of its funding target, the company could co-invest in 65 startups.
The fund is the latest in a stream of funds launched in recent times aiming to fund early stage startups.
Since launching in January 2015, CapitalPitch says it has helped 9 companies raise more than A$13-M and it has 1392 members.
Startups that have successfully raised money through CapitalPitch include aged care business CareGuidance, Car Next Door and online brokerage business OpenMarkets.
The CapitalPitch Venture fund will invest 15% of the total capital raised target in each startup on the website that successful secures another lead investor.
As the startups on the platform grow and look to raise larger amounts of capital, CapitalPitch intends to continue to support them and will invest again in later rounds.
“We’ve looked at all the best funding platforms around the world and all of the best processes to build investor-ready startups and we’ve seen that having a fund is important for two reasons,” said Mr. Liddle, who previously founded food and beverage wholesale, marketing and distribution business Riolife.
“From an investor perspective it says that we’re so confident in our process that we’ll put our money in first, and then from a startup perspective it shows our motivation isn’t just to take a percentage success fee … it’s helping them get to a successful exit,” he said.
Before joining the CapitalPitch board and becoming a partner in the new venture fund, Mr. Folsom invested in the company’s $150,000 and $600,000 seed funding rounds.
Through Mr. Folsom, Mr Liddle was introduced to The Maloney Family, who have been ranked on BRW Rich Families list.
Startups that want to join CapitalPitch platform must go through a 6-step preparation phase. The company does not accept any startups that are pre-revenue and closely examines the experience of the founders, makes them complete a 21-page pitch deck, evaluates their financial model and sales and marketing plan and causes them to complete a 70-point Due Diligence checklist.
Mr. Liddle said this tested the willingness of the founders to embrace the difficulty of the process.
“The great founders love the opportunity to be better and to be more prepared to put their best foot forward,” he said.
“There are a lot of cowboys in the market and a lot of people lose money because they don’t put the rigour into the process. But the successful founders love this systematic approach.”
Having recently met with investors and business leaders in Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai, New York and San Francisco, Mr. Liddle said there was a strong appetite from Asian investors for Australia companies.
“It surprised me how open they were to invest in Australian companies,” he said. “In the US there is less of an appetite for Australian startups, but there is a strong appetite for the Asian region … and Australia is a big part of targeting that region.”