Bucharest, October 27th, 2021
GapMinder sells its stake in Flip.ro to eMAG Ventures
Techcelerator: It is the fastest performance of an early-stage company in our accelerator programs
- GapMinder VC has invested twice in Flip.ro, the first round of funding being through batch #3 of the accelerator programs developed by Techcelerator
- The company aims to expand into Central and Eastern Europe
- Target: €14 million turnover this year
- Double the number of employees by summer 2022
Bucharest, October 27, 2021: GapMinder Venture Partners is selling its stake in Flip.ro, an online marketplace for refurbished phones, to eMAG Ventures, a program launched by eMAG to invest in technology companies. GapMinder has invested €150,000 in Flip.ro in two rounds of funding, the first round being through Techcelerator, an accelerator program that targets technology start-ups in Romania and Southeastern Europe.
Flip.ro is the first online marketplace in Romania that helps customers sell their old phone in a simple and fast way and buy a verified used phone with a warranty and right of return. The start-up was launched at the end of 2019 by George Moroianu (24), Alin Luca (27), and Alex Burghelia (23).
eMAG Ventures bought the 42.26% stake from Flip.ro’s minority shareholders and invests €1.5 million in accelerating the business. The value of the transaction is confidential. In addition to the €1.5 million funding, Flip will benefit from eMAG’s experience in accelerating technology businesses, operational know-how, and rapid international business scaling.
Techcelerator’s fastest performing early-stage portfolio company
“This is the fastest performance of a Techcelerator-backed start-up. We met Flip.ro’s three founders in 2019 when they were accepted into one of the accelerator programs developed by Techcelerator and we distinguished them alongside 35 other teams selected from over 200 start-ups. The fact that they now attract investment from eMAG Ventures and become part of the eMAG group, validates once again the role Techcelerator has in identifying and developing Romanian early-stage startups and preparing them to raise successive rounds of investment. We see this development as an extraordinary achievement in the course of a Romanian early-stage start-up that, with the right team, vision and backers, in just two years and through two rounds of funding, gets to demonstrate the importance and profitability of pre-seed and seed investments“, said Cristian Dascălu, Techcelerator co-founder and GapMinder partner.
Third investment round for Flip.ro
This is the third investment round Flip.ro has attracted, the other two being in 2019 and 2020 and having a total value of €370,000.
In 2019, Flip.ro was selected in the Techcelerator program obtaining funding of €120,000, with GapMinder VC being one of the first investors. In summer 2020, Flip.ro attracted €250,000, with the round led by GapMinder VC.
The company grew very quickly, announcing sales of €1.3 million last October, just ten months after launch.
Flip.ro’s founders are targeting €14 million in business this year, up from €2.5 million last year. They also expect the business to grow to around 100 employees by summer 2022, double its current number.
“When we first invested in Flip.ro in 2019, we were primarily attracted by the team. We also looked at their potential to go very far, to grow considerably in the region and even beyond the region. Now, the founders want to take it to the next level, they want to expand into Central and Eastern Europe and add new product categories. With this transaction they can grow much faster, they can become a very big company in two to three years as part of the eMAG group. They have enormous potential together. It was the wisest decision for them, but also for us, the investors,” said Dan Mihăescu, founding partner of GapMinder Venture Partners.
“We launched Flip.ro because we noticed two problems in the market. First, selling the old phone was a long process, full of negotiations, and very time-consuming. And buying a used phone from classified sites relied heavily on luck. We wanted to bring simplicity and confidence between sellers and buyers, and GapMinder and Techcelerator saw the opportunity for such a marketplace since we were just an idea. The growth we’ve had has been beyond our expectations and now we’re at the stage where we’re aiming even higher. We are extremely grateful to the customers who have tried our platform and supported us with feedback, but also to the investors who have guided us in the right direction. We are very excited about the partnership with the eMAG group and believe that together with them we will become one of the most important players in the field in Central and Eastern Europe,” said George Moroianu, co-founder of Flip.ro.
Founded in November 2019, Flip aims to revolutionize the way we sell and buy refurbished and used electronics online and is the first remarketed products marketplace in Romania to offer similar selling conditions as new products: 14-day return right and 12-month warranty.
Techcelerator is the accelerator for technology startups in Romania and Southeastern Europe. With offices in Bucharest and Cluj-Napoca, Techcelerator is the first accelerator in Romania to allocate funds for the development of high-tech companies in the acceleration and post-acceleration phases. Innovative young companies with high growth and international expansion potential in growth industries such as FinTech, B2B SaaS, eHealth, PropTech, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, digital transformation, and others are targeted for acceleration and investment. Techcelerator benefits from the strategic support provided by GapMinder Venture Partners and also collaborates with other local and European investors to support the tech ecosystem in Romania and South-Eastern Europe.
Techcelerator has successfully supported more than 50 startups through previous accelerator rounds, but also through various support programs, organized by itself or in partnership with other entities in the ecosystem. In the four years since its launch, Techcelerator portfolio companies have benefited from continuous go-to-market and investment readiness assistance, managing to attract funding rounds of around €15 million.
About GapMinder Venture Partners BV
GapMinder is a €50 million venture capital fund that invests in fast-growing international technology companies created in Romania and Central Europe at Seed or Series A stage. GapMinder Partners take a hands-on approach as investors, helping companies grow through strategic advice and direct involvement in the operational organization, corporate governance and financial discipline. GapMinder’s portfolio includes companies such as FintechOS, TypingDNA, SmartDreamers, Deepstash, Frisbo or Planable. GapMinder is mostly co-financed through the Competitiveness Operational Programme 2014 – 2020.
About the European Investment Fund
European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank Group and is the main venture capital for SMEs in Europe, via venture capital instruments, guarantees, and microfinance. In Romania, the EIF implements financial instruments funded through structural and investment funds: JEREMIE 2007-2013, SME Initiative, and financial instruments from PO Competitiveness, Regional Operational Program, and NRDP.
Senior Advisor, Corporate Communication, DiFine PR
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