11 startup founders reveal the significant advantage they gained by building a business with Antler
Building a business, whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or a first-time founder, is hard work.
July 3, 2021
Share this post
From forming a team to validating your idea, testing your MVP, and raising capital, it's time-consuming, often grueling work with long hours. Not only that, taking into account that the majority of startups fail within their first year, without the right support it can feel deflating.
That being said, there are a number of ways entrepreneurs can get support along the journey to not only build their business but raise capital from investors who will also come on as long-term supporters.
Antler, a Global early-stage VC, enables and invests in people building the startups that will go on to become the defining companies of tomorrow.
Antler provides founders of its portfolio companies an unmatched capital pathway and access to a Global footprint of investors, advisors, and other founders to reference for quicker scaling, due diligence, and problem-solving.
We asked 11 founders of our Australian portfolio companies what they found to be the biggest advantages of building a business with Antler. Here's what the founders had to say*.
(*Their experiences relate specifically to the Antler Australia recruitment process and program, which varies across Antler's 15 locations globally.)
Finding the right co-founders
StoryTiling co-founder and CEO Aliaa Remtilla, said her consumer app literally would not exist had Antler not helped her build its co-founding team.
"Our company wouldn't exist without Antler - it's where we met each other!" she says.
"Antler did the hard work of recruiting high calibre talent, which made it so much easier for us to find the right co-founders. We love working together, and our skill sets are really complementary, setting us up for long term success."
Adash co-founder and COO Dan Carew agreed, saying the biggest advantage he found from building his FoodTech business with Antler, was finding the right co-founders.
"Being put in a room of over 80 people who also want to build the next unicorn is so powerful in a lot of ways,"said Dan.
Both Aliaa and Dan joined Antler's pre-launch program in which Antler helps individuals build teams and businesses, ready for VC investment.
Hitting the ground running with confidence
For Bramp co-founder and CEO Benni Weller, who was also part of the pre-launch program, it all came down to the confidence Antler instilled in him that made the biggest difference.
"As a domain expert with no prior startup experience the Antler platform has been life-changing," says Benni.
"The combination of community, masterclasses, and coaching has given me such a strong foundation to go into this company-building process with confidence. There is always someone to ask, always someone to lean on for help and I've made friends and business partners for life."
Access to a global startup network and experts
"The access to the Antler network and introductions has been really valuable," says Patch co-founder and CEO Mark Allen. "But the biggest advantage Patch gained building the company with Antler has been the insights from advisors and mentors that has given us an outside view of what is often difficult for founders to see, as we're too close to the problem."
"The valuable sessions with mentors who have experience with businesses facing similar challenges and arming us with the tools to solve the unique challenges that our business faced has been our secret formula for success."
While Mark built his business in the pre-launch program, Jonathan Gibbs, co-founder and CEO of Savion Aerospace, who agrees access was the number one advantage, joined Antler with an existing business.
Here's what he had to say about the experience:
"We have gained several key advantages by building our company with Antler. The first was access to Antler's extensive network in Australia. Second was expert mentoring, and third - exposure to other incredible founders who are going through the same process of building a company."
For others, such as Elliot Miller, co-founder and CEO of Hearoes, the variety and number of networking events and scenarios that Antler provided to teams is an unbeatable experience.
"The networking opportunities have been incredible," says Elliot, "as well as the learnings for early-stage business building and beyond."
Elliot and his team had previously built Hearoes and worked with an Australian DeepTech incubator prior to joining the Antler network.
Antler's investment has helped Elliot grow and scale his business at speed, and attract further investment from later-stage investors.
The ample and extensive resources
For Fabrizia Roberto, co-founder and CEO of Koverd, joining Antler was "a defining opportunity".
"As first-time founders, the resources and support that Antler provided us with have accelerated enormously our understanding of how startups work and what it takes to be successful."
She echoed others' comments in saying that it would have taken much longer for her to find her co-founder, if at all, had it not been for Antler.
"He had been part of the Antler Academy and we met after I put out a call for a co-founder through the extended Antler network,"she says.
"I couldn't have asked for a more perfect co-founder to bring Koverd to life."
Access to a large and talented group of other founders
Similarly to Jon from Savion, Dr Tia Cummins, co-founder and CEO Flintworks, says, "having access to a large, immensely talented group of people who have already made the jump to take a swing at something big, allows you to take the necessary time to find a co-founder with both shared values & vision, alongside complementary skills and personality."
Doug MacDonald, co-founder and CEO of Sahha, a HealthTech startup agreed.
"Being put in a room with a group of like-minded people, all focused on solving problems is worth the admission alone," he says. "Then there is the support, coaching, and networking."
Learning dedicated startup coaches
Last but certainly not least, the founders of both Skoutli and Classnika agreed that coaches were the biggest advantage they gained through building a business with Antler.
Caroline Lepron, co-founder and CEO of Skoutli says it was meeting a cohort of amazing humans where everyone can learn from each other as well as Antler's great coaches and strong network.
Dr Ramtin Shams, co-founder and CEO of Classnika, agreed.
"Engaging with the excellent coaches and learning from them has been the absolute highlight of our Antler experience," he says. "They have significantly helped us in shaping the way we tell our story, in a way it would do justice to the vision/product."
Antler companies are provided dedicated coaches both in the company building stage of the pre-launch program or the accelerated existing business stage for already formed companies in the lead-up to the investment committee.
This article was written by Communications Analyst Anjali Warrier and Sarah Kimmorley, VP of Marketing and PR at Antler.
Antler is a Global early-stage VC enabling and investing in exceptional people building the defining companies of tomorrow. Learn more about the platform here.
Subscribe to our newsletter
Get the latest news and views from Antler’s global community
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Share this post
Must-read articles from Antler
Browse our collection of founder stories, industry insights and latest startup successes from Antler Australia
As everyone anticipates the next wave of ultra-successful companies in Benelux, what does it take to get there? What do the successful founders of Benelux unicorns look like? This report is an in-depth look at the Benelux startup ecosystem and its brightest stars. And above all, it is for anyone who is helping build the next 50 unicorns in Benelux.
The Angle is a new content series from Antler, featuring perspectives from our team members on the biggest events and trends impacting founders and early-stage investors today. Every article is that person's unique angle on a hot topic—what they see from their vantage point in one of our 25 offices around the globe—not Antler's stance. In our first edition, Jeff Becker draws lessons from the demise of FTX and turbulent tech moments in recent years. This article first appeared in Jeff's Monday Morning Meeting on Substack.
Our new content series—"It All Starts with People"—delves into the passions, motivations, and vision of the exceptional founders we have the privilege of partnering wtih around the world. In our second spotlight, we sat down with Jamie Bubb, co-founder of Twirl, a remote content studio powered by top-quality creators that helps brands scale their content engines rapidly and cost-effectively.
We are living two simultaneous realities: the uncertainty of the current downturn and the unstoppable wave of innovation disrupting every industry. Against this backdrop, Antler's Kevin Brennan shares perspectives on assessing your position in venture capital for the rest of 2022 and into 2023. Might 2023 be the best vintage for the coming decade?
Antler was founded on the belief that people innovating is the key to building a better future. To honor them, we are launching a new content series—”It All Starts with People”—spotlighting the exceptional founders we have the privilege of partnering with around the world. Each story is a window into their passions, motivations, and vision—the reasons they are building and the positive dent they are aiming to make on the world.
In our first spotlight, we sat down with Emilia Theye, the co-founder of clare&me—a mental health app that uses language-based AI to develop an innovative approach to virtual self-help.
Founders are the life force of the startup ecosystem. They give their all, betting on their seemingly “crazy” convictions and executing on abstract ideas that can potentially make our lives and work easier, faster, healthier, and better optimized.
But sometimes they do this to the detriment of their health. Being a founder means being beholden to customers, employees, and investors while balancing personal life. Often founders trade their stable, well-paying jobs to prioritize the restless inquisitivity of their mind. In the quest to answer the question “what if?”, they sometimes sacrifice their mental and physical health, only realizing the effects on their state of mind once they have impacted their ability to function as a leader. We have also seen how the mental pressure on founders can cause distress to those who depend on them for their livelihood and direction.