Am I right for Antler?

Elísabet Ýr Sigurðardóttir, co-founder of Anda, shares her experience building with Antler.

Nina Leong

June 27, 2023
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Antler Australia recently invested in Anda, a wearable tech startup aiming to provide individuals with tools and guidance reduce stress and improve physical and mental health.

Elísabet Ýr Sigurðardóttir, co-founder of Anda, sat down with Antler Associate Partner Adele Moynihan for our ‘Am I right for Antler? AMA,’ the second of our five-part inaugural AMA series. 

During the discussion, Elisabet shared her prior experience and how it led her to building a business with a global day zero investor, and her journey of finding her co-founder.

Building her skillset

Prior to co-founding Anda, Elisabet was the marketing director for the biggest e-commerce store in Iceland. She also spent some time in digital banking where she drove strategic initiatives for digital channels. Elisabet started her entrepreneurial journey as a co-founder of Random Hacks of Kindness, a community of developers working on software solutions to solve humanities challenges. 

It was when Elisabet co-founded Random Hacks of Kindness, a non-profit organisation, where she started exploring entrepreneurship. “It kind of gave me a taste of starting something myself and the impact I can have.”

Through her previous experiences, Elisabet was able to extract the leadership skills complemented with her domain expertise in tech and marketing and apply it to her current role of CTO at Anda.

Finding her co-founder

Elisabet’s journey at Antler was more unique than the typical Antler path. She joined Antler in October 2022 with a cohort of founders eager to kickstart their journey with Antler, which is where she met her first co-founder.

“I developed a good friendship with my friend Witold and after five weeks into the program, we got the idea of Anda”

After an unsuccessful investment committee, Elisabet stayed on for the following cohort, where she met her current co-founder, James McWhinney. “We have really complementary skills and we worked on different ideas until week three, then we pivoted back to Anda”

Elisabet reflects on her role in both of her cohort experiences. “When I went to IC the first time, my role was the CEO role and my co-founder was the CTO, but that has changed now. I'm the CTO, which feels more natural to me, and James is the commercial man behind Anda.”

Advice to aspiring founders

Upon reflecting on her experience, Elisabet gave guidance to founders who were joining Antler.

“It's really important to join and be very kind of clear about your vision, goals and the problem that you want to solve. This really helps you articulate your vision effectively and align it with the resources and the support provided by Antler and to find the person with complementary skills.”

Whilst she acknowledges all the support Antler gave her and James, she highlights the importance of self-motivation.

“They really hold your hand and help you in every aspect possible, but it's important to still be proactive and take ownership” says Elisabet. “Ultimately, the success of the startup and the idea that you're working on depends on your own effort and commitment.”

Watch the full AMA about Elisabet's experience with Antler

If you're an individual looking for a co-founder(s), seeking to build a startup, applications to join Antler Australia are open!


About the author

Nina Leong

Nina is an Associate in Scouting based in the Melbourne office. She has a passion for data and analytics and uses it to strategically identify the most exceptional founders and onboard them into the Antler program. Prior to Antler, she worked in PwC's Deals Advisory business and lead operations for the expansion of Deliveroo across Australia.

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