Thanks to the fantastic final years of Geographica and its sale to CARTO, I’ve been able to operate as an investor in a more planned and strategic way. You could say that Geographica was my first investment, and it gave me a 2,000-fold return between cash and CARTO shares. I doubt that I’ll have as many strokes of luck as I needed to achieve something like that, but I can try.
Investing is risky and I don’t like recommending an investment to anyone except for in a few rare cases and to people who are fully aware that they could lose their money. No one has a crystal ball and everyone constantly makes mistakes.
I personally invest from Habichuelas Ventures with my business partner Alberto (CTO at CARTO) in tech startups in Andalusia and Madrid. We’ve invested in eight to date, and these startups operate in areas as diverse as biotechnology, tourism and the automotive industry. They include: Dentaltix, MOGU, Wuolah, Motoreto, Nailted, Alte, etc.
From Ginko I invest in startups with three key aspects: China, technology and sustainability. In GenetsisData, Zurita, for example.
I also invest with far smaller tickets via syndicated co-investment platforms, and examples include Genially, Tot-em, Laagam, OX Motorcicles, LUDA Partners, Hoop Carpool.
I’ve put my money in organised markets for several years now, I have a trivial amount in cripto (BTC, ETH, ADA, LINK, XRP, BCH and MATIC) and have recently started index investing, which I have to say seems to be a smart and practical way to invest, although it has its element of risk, like any investment.
I invest in around 3-4 projects a year. I receive about 60-80 a year. I have great admiration and respect for any entrepreneur, so I try to carefully analyse all the projects that I receive.
I invest in companies with very specific characteristics:
Dedicated founders who personally meet the main needs and challenges of the company.
Honest, ambitious and humble founders.
Founders who know their takings. Who wake up in the morning and check their bank account.
Have a turnover. I’m happy with a euro more than my daughter gets selling bracelets on the beach.
Operate in a growing market.
Have a strong tech element.
Preferably have a SaaS business model and B2B focus.
Have a reasonable and well-calculated customer acquisition cost.
That are at an early stage and have a pre-money valuation of under 2 million.
If possible, it should be a company that operates in an area that interest me and that I like to read about in my free time.
At Habichuelas we invest in amounts from 10K to 50K. We can contribute moderately to following investment rounds.
It’s a shame that I can’t dedicate more time to all the companies who contact me. Just because they didn’t meet my (possibly flawed) investment criteria, I’m sure I’ve left some great opportunities by the wayside. I do at least forward on many interesting companies to other business angels or funds.
HOW CAN I HELP YOU?
Are you a startup?
I’m looking for promising tech startups in Madrid, Andalusia and Morocco.
Are you a fund/VC or business angel?
I help to connect funds and business angels with startups in Madrid, Andalusia and Morocco.