Serial entrepreneurs are choosing Antler to launch their next venture - here’s why that’s important

21% of Antler Sydney's second cohort have previously exited a company as a founder or executive.



Adele Moynihan

Adele is responsible for Antler’s Pre-Launch and Pre-Seed delivery as well as Antler Advantage. In addition, she plays a critical role in Antler’s fundraising and fund strategy. Previously, Adele was an early hire of now unicorn SafetyCulture and led the assembly of the c-suite of five corporate backed startups at BCG Digital Ventures.

Antler has just kicked off its second program in Sydney with 81 exceptional individuals ready to build the next wave of tech.

In the months leading up to this event, there has been an epic effort by the recruiting team to assemble these experienced and aspiring entrepreneurs from 1,288 applications.

We have an array of stats to demonstrate the strength of the cohort:

📈 37% increase in applications

💪 17% more founders accepted

⚙️ 30% increase in tech founders (builders)

🚀 55% previously launched a startup

But there is one that means the most:

💥 21% have previously exited a company as a founder or executive 💥

Why is this important?

This metric shows that Antler, as well as delivering on our mission of removing the barriers to entrepreneurship and freeing people from corporates, we are attracting those who have done this before and realise Antler's value of being able to fast track their next venture.

The power of this statistic really hit home for me over the last couple of days. As part of Week 1 of the program, we take a moment each day for our founders to introduce themselves to the cohort. In groups of five, each person takes 90 seconds to run through their career background, personal interests, and answer an Antler wild card question. What I have found most impressive about these sessions is that in each of these groups there is at least one person, if not more, that has already founded, scaled and exited a company.

This morning it was Katerina Kimmorley's turn. Katerina co-founded Pollinate Energy, a cleantech that improves the lives of India's urban poor by making sustainable energy products accessible.

Why did she do this? She saw first hand one of the largest blackouts in history. As a result of that blackout, an estimated 700 million people - 10% of the world's population - lost power. She knew she had to do something to help.

Pollinate Energy gives poor communities access to sustainable products to help them and the planet. Such as swapping harmful kerosene, used for cooking and light, for solar alternatives. The company has served897 communities, reached 106,715 people and saved 2,943,063 litres of kerosene. It was established as a for-profit and exited to a charity. This path was chosen by the founders to ensure the ethics of why the company was started could be maintained.

Following on from Pollinate, Katerina joined the founding team of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation to help launch and run the world's largest VC for cleantech, based right here in Australia! The CEFC is a specialist financier, supported by the government, with AU$200 million to invest into early-stage clean energy companies.

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To provide further context, also in Katerina's group that day was Data Scientist KK, Head of Engineering Keith, Lead Product Manager Jono, and commercial leader Justin.

So, why did Katerina choose to start her next business through an Antler program when she was experienced in founding and scaling companies, and also equipped with VC know-how? For her it was the people.

Coming into Antler I amongst 80 other exceptional co-founders with highly diverse skills, ready to build now. I simply do not know how else you would gain access to such an experienced and dedicated pool of talent.


Alongside Katerina in the program are those taking to leap into startups for the first time, such as Jack Grundling. Jack led Macquarie Bank's data and analytics function following a career in banking. Joining Antler is his first foray into entrepreneurship.

It's not often you get presented with a clear opportunity to make that life-long dream a reality. The Antler program provided me with a high-probability-of-success option to test out my startup ideas and find the right person to build it with. Removing these long-standing hurdles made the final decision to make the leap pretty easy.


Serial entrepreneurs in Australia are choosing Antler to launch their next venture because of this unique melting pot of talented and experienced professionals.

Having seasoned entrepreneurs like Katerina provides the opportunity to pair with those who have deep corporate understanding to prevent teams from falling into first time founder pitfalls. This is because experienced entrepreneurs are able to identify and navigate the challenges of early-stage startups, and those from corporate backgrounds can help to position a new offering or model the business in a way that can attract attention and appeal to potential corporate customers.

This week, the cohort will be participating in a number of Design Sprints aimed at tackling some of the world's most crucial and important problems. For example, the current climate crisis Australia and providing solutions that will work to solve the United Nations sustainable development goals. Stay tuned to see what these entrepreneurs, corporate high flyers, PhD's and builders will create.

This article first appeared on LinkedIn. Read the original here.

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