What is Lean FUND ?
Lean FUND sa/nv is a privately held seed/early stage investment fund, managed by experienced entrepreneurs, who offer their coaching from the integrated Lean REACTOR Program.
We help our lean portfolio companies through the iterative process of “Build-Measure-Learn”.
We fund startups that use their resources and people sparingly, and try to get where they’re going as easily and cost-efficiently as possible.
Our vision is to spark a chain reaction of European innovation and fuel entrepreneurship from our base camp in Belgium.
We eat our own dog food and apply the same principles of low overheads to our Lean FUND itself. One of the reasons that many venture-capital funds have moved away from seed investing is that they simply cannot afford to get out of bed for the relatively small sums that early-stage companies need. We think it’s possible to do seed investing well by doing it efficiently and powered by the passion of our coaches.
The key principles of lean startups are clear: a great way to build a business is to start by collecting the right metrics – the data that indicate what it costs to bring in new customers, how much they engage with your product, and how profitable they are. Then you propose a hypothesis for how to improve the metrics and then test it. If it’s right, you make a small tweak to the business. Then rinse and repeat and repeat forever.
In principle, that’s not hard. But to follow a lean approach, founders often need someone with a bit of perspective – a partner who’s fully engaged in the business but also enough of an outsider to be able to see things differently. That’s a role we aim to fulfil.
What type of companies are you looking for ?
Lean FUND invests in innovative startups with skilled teams that have proven they can work together (when the going gets tough).
Prior to our investment, they must have shown promising traction with their Minimum Viable Product.
In which sectors do you invest ?
Lean FUND invests in innovative companies at seed and pre-seed stage (post accelerator program, startup weekend and/or booking their first revenues or market traction).
We mainly consider innovative business models and projects in the internet industry at large, we believe to be disruptive, scalable and fundable.
We seek to invest in capital-efficient companies that can achieve profitability without needing to raise a lot of money initially.
We typically exclude pharma, biotech, healthcare, spinoffs, hardware development, R&D, unless you can prove that it’s crowd fundable.
At what stage and value do you invest ?
We invest at early stage for teams or startups that have followed an accelerator program.
We invest in the first round, at the seed stage, with amounts ranging from 25.000 to 100.000 €.
Lean FUND pooled its capital from a group of seasoned business angels, not bankers. We invest in young companies that typically do not exceed a pre-money valuation of 500.000 €.
What will you bring ?
On top of injecting extra cash in our portfolio startups, Lean FUNDS helps to increase market traction, helps the founders to focus on the business development and eases attraction of additional capital in a next stage. This goes from providing free office space of the first year after investing to services that help in growing market traction, prospects or customers base or simply support the incorporation.
Why raise money from Lean Fund ?
As a young startup, you have probably already used FFF funding and tried to have bankers or investors on board… And discovered that initial funding is hard to catch… Everyone is definitely interested in “keeping touch with you” but no one is ready to actually provide you with the required initial funding…
That is exactly the reason why we have launched this fund. We know startups from within and understand you don’t have exploding revenues yet … We are ready to trust you and we will support your venture to the next level!
What is the process for applying ?
Prospective startups looking for funding can submit their funding request here.
Our selection team continuously monitors applications and we are quick on following up on your submission.
What if I’m not ready yet ?
Subscribe – as a friend or as an entrepreneur – to our newsletter and stay tuned.
Participate to an accelerator, incubator or start-up weekend to refine your project.
What if I’m investor ?
Sign up as investor to our newsletter or contact us – firstname.lastname@example.org – if you’d like to extend our reach by strengthening Lean FUND with some more capital.
What’s this Lean FUND “Power 3” call for projects all about?
This is our own Launch Product, with a simple formula for success: YOU x MONEY x COACHES
On top of our fast decision in the “Power 3″ launch action, we have a permanent seed funding program that goes up to 500.000 EUR pre-money valuation. Apply here if you’d still like to join our portfolio.