Summing up the year: the largest investments in Ukrainian startups and companies
Gitlab, $110 million
The main deal of this year is definitely a new round of Gitlab, the IT company with its Ukrainian roots. A company with a co-founder from Kharkiv, Dmitry Zaporozhets, raised $110 million from Iconiq Capital, GV and Khosla Ventures in the framework of the D series round. Gitlab was valued at $1.1 billion, thus the startup became a “unicorn.”
Gitlab is a git-repositories hosting. The goal of the team is to build an “all in one” platform, where all services for developers will be presented without the need to integrate any third-party tools. Over this year, Gitlab’s audience has grown rapidly,not without help of the purchase of their main rival, GitHub, by Microsoft.
After a new round of investment, AIN.UA interviewed Dmitry Zaporozhets, where we learned about the company’s objectives, features of work and the reasons for its success.
Bitfury, $80 million
This year was productive for the company with co-founder from Ukraine,Valeriy Nebesnyi. Bitfury released a number of products for the cryptosphere, and was recognized as one of the best FINTECH startups according to Forbes, but most importantly, it raised investment of $80 million. The value of the company is disclosed, however, following the results of the transaction, the company was called “the European blockchain unicorn.” Investors for the company were Korelya Capita, Naver Group, Macquarie Capital and others.
The company plans to invest raised funds in the new round of software creation,and infrastructure blockchain projects for governments and corporations. “2018 was a year of incredible growth for us. This round reflects our achievements and the ability to cover new markets, including the field of artificial intelligence,” commented Bitfury co-founder Valeriy Vavilov.
Neuromation, $70 million
The popularity of ICO in 2018 has decreased significantly. However, a Neuromation startup with a Ukrainian CEO and an office in Kyiv managed to conduct an extremely successful campaign to sell tokens at the beginning of this year. In total, the project has raised more than $71 million, and this is a record ICO for startups with Ukrainian roots, and one of the largest in the world in all time.
Neuromation is working on a platform that allows one to create an artificial learning environment for learning neural networks on a large number of examples. At the same time, synthetic data for teaching AI is generated with the help of the computing power of the blockchain-community.
People.ai, $30 million
Last year, it became known that People.ai, a startup with Ukrainian roots, raised $7 million in the framework of the series A round. This year this project already announced the attraction of B round of $30 million from Andreessen Horowitz, Lightspeed Venture Partners, GGV Capital, and Y Combinator. The company plans to use the funds for searching for new customers, developing a team and opening an office in Canada.
In addition, this year, People.ai was included in the list of the most expensive graduates of the accelerator Y Combinator, as well as in the top ten companies with the best corporate culture in the United States. The startup is working on a technology that analyzes the performance of the sales department using machine learning. The founder of People.ai, Oleg Rogynskyy, reported that People.ai is now analyzing not only salespeople but all employees who interact with customers.
Hired, $30 million
A recruiting platform Hired, which was co-founded by the Ukrainian, Mykola Sapov (also known as Allan Grant), raised $30 million from the investment fund Investment Management Corporation this year. Hired is a service that connects employers and software developers: the first is helping to find talent, and the second one – a new job. The company earns a commission from each successful transaction, and it’s 15% of the annual salary of specialists. Previously, Hired has already attracted more than $100 million from a number of investors.
Rentberry, $30 million
Another successful ICO from the Ukrainian project this year. At the beginning of the year, Rentberry completed the sale of tokens, raising a total of $30 million. The funds were collected for the development of a platform for renting real estate in the US. At the time of attracting investments, 120,000 users and 224,000 objects were registered on the platform. Following the results of ICO, Rentberry issued BERRY tokens for paying for various functions on the platform, for example, a deposit for renting an apartment.
K&T Capital, 20 million Euro
This year, the British K&T Capital fund with the Ukrainian co-founder Roman Taranov raised 20 million euros from private investors. The company plans to use the raised funds to invest in projects from the post-Soviet space. One of the first deals is investing in equity-crowdfunding of Ukrainian startup Ecoisme.
Intellias, $5-20 million
Intellias, a large Ukrainian IT company, received investments from Horizon Capital. The parties did not disclose the amount of the transaction, however, according to AIN.UA, it ranges from $5 to $20 million. Intellias provides a full range of software development services. Today, the company has more than 1,100 employees in Lviv, Kyiv, and Odesa. The company will invest in opening development centers in Kharkiv and Ivano-Frankivsk, as well as in Central and Eastern Europe.
YayPay, $8.4 million
Ukrainian FINTECH startup YayPay with R&D in Kyiv attracted $8.4 million of investments in the framework of the series A. Investors were Information Venture Partners, Birchmere, QED and others. YayPay helps businesses optimize financial processes, it controls the timely payment of all invoices and also predicts the movement of funds. This is the second round for YayPay, last year the startup raised $5.3 million.
This year became important for the development of the Ukrainian startup Restream, the company attracted its first investments. The deal amounted to $4.5 million, and the investors were Silverton Partners, Anorak Ventures, COLOPL, and others.
The startup is working on a platform with the same name, which allows content creators to broadcast simultaneously on more than 30 platforms, including Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, and others. This year, Restream told about another important success: the service reached 1 million streamers.
3DLOOK, $1 million
This year, the investment was also attracted by a 3DLOOK startup from Odesa, founded by Vadym Rogovsky. UVentures, 500 Startups, and several business-angels invested $1 million in it.
3DLOOK works on human’s body photo scanning technology for use in online retail. The tools will directly accelerate the launch of SAIA 3D technology, which creates a 3D model of the body, taking into account 29 indicators. In his interview with AIN.UA, Rogovskiy told that a large American retailer Kohl’s is already a startup’s client.