Top VCs predict which German e-commerce startups will become the next unicorns

2 weeks ago 15
  • There were a record number of new unicorns in 2021, according to PitchBook.
  • Insider asked top VCs to predict which German e-commerce startups would achieve unicorn status next.
  • Here are the four companies they chose.

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This is an edited, translated version of an article originally published on May 2.

Insider asked top European venture capitalists which startups they though would be next to hit billion-dollar valuations in Germany's e-commerce market, one of Europe's biggest and most well established, according to JPMorgan.

There was one condition: They each had to choose a company that wasn't from their own portfolio. These are the companies they chose.

1. The Stryze Group

Chosen by: Nikolas Krawinkel, a partner at Mangrove Capital, and Stefan Walter, a cofounder and managing partner at Cavalry Ventures

Year founded: 2020

Founders: Mark Hartmann, Sascha Krause, Sebastian Funke, and Taro Niggemann

The Stryze Group is an Amazon aggregator, a company that buys Amazon sellers and scales them. While other rollups, like the Razor Group, have already achieved unicorn status, Berlin's Stryze is well on its way there, Krawinkel and Walter said.

The company has raised $100 million since it was founded, according to Crunchbase, and it now has more than 30 sellers in its portfolio. Its investors include Alstin Capital and the US fund Upper90.

2. Spryker

Chosen by: Jasper Masemann, a partner at HV Capital, Andre Retterath, a principal at Earlybird, and Shikha Ahluwalia, an associate at Balderton Capital

Year founded: 2014

Founders: Alexander Graf and Boris Lokschin

Spryker's software allows corporate customers to build their own web stores, integrate subscription offers, and even build app stores. According to Spryker, its customers include Toyota, Ricoh, and Aldi.

It has raised a total of $152 million, including a $130 million Series C in December 2020. Investors include the Silicon Valley fund TCV, which has backed companies like Netflix and Airbnb, Berlin's VC Project A Ventures, and London's One Peak Partners.

3. Cargo.one

Chosen by: Luca Martinelli, a partner at Btov, Robin Godenrath, a founding partner at Picus Capital, and Andre Retterath, a principal at Earlybird

Year founded: 2017

Founders: Mike Rötgers, Moritz Claussen, and Oliver Neumann

Cargo.one acts as an intermediary between airlines and freight forwarders. It offers an online platform to compare and book airfreight capacity, showing users live prices across multiple airlines, according to its website.

It has raised $63.8 million, including a $42 million Series B in December 2020. Its biggest investors are Bessemer Ventures, Index Ventures, and Creandum.

4. Hive

Chosen by: Claude Ritter, a cofounder and managing partner at Cavalry Ventures, Gesa Miczaika, a general partner at Auxxo, and Noel Zeh, a managing partner at Alstin Capital

Year founded: 2020

Founders: Franz Purucker, Leonard von Kleist, and Oskar Ziegler

Hive takes care of distribution logistics for young companies. It provides storage and packing solutions for these companies before handing products over to a last-mile-delivery carrier, according to its website.

Its software allows retailers to manage their stock, and the company gives users access to live data and analytics on the process. The company also said it used sustainable packaging.

While it was founded in 2020, it's already raised $43.8 million, including a $34 million Series A, which was led by Tiger Global.

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