The acceleration of the digitalisation of BeAngels’ services due to COVID has created new opportunities for the Belgian network. The live streaming of startup pitches from Belgium and the possibility of monitoring a project and its investments online is enabling the network to think big and create a chapter in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The objective? To recruit 100 members within two years and, above all, to offer Luxembourg startups the possibility of additional financing.
Until now, the Belgian network’s recruitment of some Luxembourg investors has been sporadic. Thanks to the digitalisation of the network’s services, around a dozen Luxembourg members (residents and cross-border commuters) have been recruited since September.
The new chapter provides maximum flexibility to new Luxembourg members who, from now on, will be able, if they prefer, to participate in pitches from their home, or to join other members to watch the streaming in a place prepared for that purpose in Luxembourg, followed by an evening cocktail and networking event.
According to Benjamin Tillier, Luxembourg Chapter Lead for BeAngels, it was essential to retain the networking dimension, “In my view, this part of the events is just as important as that of the pitches. This dimension makes it possible not only to meet new members, but also to exchange ideas with the community, whether on the different projects or on other subjects. It is for this reason that, starting in December, we will organise each event in a different location in Luxembourg.”
Supporting the Luxembourg entrepreneurial ecosystem
With the opening of this new chapter, the BeAngels network wishes to gradually establish itself in the Luxembourg startup ecosystem by selecting and presenting more local projects, which should attract more Luxembourg investors wishing to invest in the local economy. “As a Belgian resident in Luxembourg for around fifteen years, I see the government’s efforts and investments aimed at providing young creative startups with the best possible environment in which to grow. I am convinced that, step-by-step and in alignment with the all the actors in the ecosystem, BeAngels will be able to modestly participate in this major project,” adds the Luxembourg Chapter Lead.
During the presentation meeting for the BeAngels Luxembourg project in the premises of Luxinnovation a few days ago, Stefan Berend, Head of Startup Acceleration, welcomed this initiative, “Any organisation that contributes to promoting and supporting innovation in the economy through startups is obviously welcome in Luxembourg. We look forward to supporting the BeAngels team in the coming months, in order for it to be able to quickly enter our ecosystem and eventually provide an additional alternative for financing and support to our entrepreneurs.”
Stephane Pesch, CEO of the LPEA (Luxembourg Private Equity and Venture Capital Association), also shares this opinion, “The arrival of BeAngels in the Grand Duchy is excellent news because this will help to further accelerate the transformation of our digital economy and will facilitate the rise of new and innovative startups. Several opportunities for collaboration between the LPEA and BeAngels have already been identified and will certainly be implemented in the coming months.”
Several Luxembourg success stories already financed by BeAngels members
The portfolio of BeAngels members includes in particular Yotako, with its ‘design-to-code’ solution, which has a plug-in for Adobe XD and Passbolt, which recently raised two million euros to continue its growth in the domain of password security for companies. “We have had contacts with the Luxembourg ecosystem for many years and we are delighted to observe that it is increasingly dynamic and supports the development of particularly innovative and ambitious companies, which, of course, the business angels are pleased about,” welcomes BeAngels CEO, Claire Munck.
”As an incubator for technological startups, it gives us real pleasure to observe this evolution and we welcome BeAngels Luxembourg. Yotako and Passbolt, mentioned above, are currently hosted at our premises and this demonstrates that synergies have very real potential. This Luxembourg chapter will only increase the opportunities for finding the right financing and support for our entrepreneurs,” explains Diego De Biasio, CEO of Technoport.
Launch of an investment group in 2022
In January, an investment group entirely made up of Luxembourg members will be launched: 20 members will invest in three Belgian and/or Luxembourg projects over a one-year period. Each member of the group will invest €15K. “This is one of our most successful investment plans. It makes it possible to get a foot in the door of the startup investment world, while keeping the initial capital contribution low. Ideal for learning to stand on your own two feet later on. This will already be the fifteenth group created in this way by BeAngels since 2013!” adds BeAngels CEO, Claire Munck. The group’s participants, who will be mentored by coaches, will receive top-level training in eight intensive modules on topics in order to learn the mindset, secrets and techniques for successful investment in startups (BeAngels Academy).