On October 18th, 2016, CEELM reported that Slovenian start-up Creatriks had successfully obtained an investment from Speedinvest II International GmbH. We reached out to Creatriks COO & Co-founder Aljaz Ketis to find out how the investment was obtained.
CEELM: ABC Accelerator described Creatriks as a company which is “at the forefront of the hospitality revolution.” What is the Creatriks application exactly and how does it work?
A.K: Creatriks is the company which made Facility -- a hotel operations application. Facility is the ultimate hotel operations application replacing paper, phone and mouth-to-mouth communication. It makes daily hotel operations a lot easier and more efficient. Hotel staff members can check what has already been done or needs to be done with one single glance at the user-friendly application on their smartphone, tablet, or computer. By using Facility no task in a hotel is forgotten, whether big or small, regardless of the field of work: from hotel management to maintenance, from housekeeping to front office, and everything in between.
CEELM: What steps did you take in order to attract the investment? How did you persuade Speedinvest II of the value and usefulness of the app?
A.K: Facility entered the Slovenian startup scene through the ABC Accelerator program, which concluded a year ago. The startup’s potential was clear from the start, and it managed to raise EUR 150,000 in angel investments already last year. Since then, the team has been working hard on its world-class product and acquired over one hundred clients: hotels from Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia and Austria.
It took us nine months to get the investment from the largest Austrian investment fund Speedinvest. Werner Zahnt, Partner and Investment Manager at Speedinvest, said: “Facility were able to convince us with their outstanding team and product, addressing a real pain point of the hotel industry; an industry in the middle of disruption that still relies on very analog processes today. Facility enables [hotels] to realize massive efficiency -- and service quality-improvements of hotel operations. The first potential customer to whom we showed the solution wanted to buy the company immediately. So we are really excited about working with the founders on the further development of Facility.”
CEELM: Had conversations/negotiations between you and Speedinvest II already begun before you asked Miro Senica and Attorneys for assistance, or was the firm involved at the very beginning of the process?
A.K: We met with Speedinvest and other investors at the demo day event which was held by ABC Accelerator at the end of the program. We liked their view on being an active partner in the companies that they invest in so we kept them informed of our progress with Facility. When official talks started and the first due diligence documents needed to be prepared, we asked Mr. Cop from Miro Senica and Attorneys for assistance, and they have helped us through the whole process since that point.
CEELM: Why did you ask Miro Senica and Attorneys in particular to help you out on the deal?
A.K: Slovenian law has many specifics and is not the kindest in the matter of investments into startups. We really wanted to make sure that the process would be smooth, since we have already had some difficulties in the past regarding the share transfers in the company. Since we knew that Miro Senica and Attorneys are one of the most prominent attorney companies in Slovenia and that Mr. Cop was highly recommended by our angel investors, the choice was easy.
CEELM: Is the investment intended simply for general use, or are there specific purposes for which the funding was requested, and to which it will be put?
A.K: It’s our vision to become the leading global provider in our segment. Our next goal is expanding to even more countries and at least one thousand hotels in the coming year. We will use the investment to accelerate the expansion on the global market. This means investing primarily in sales, development and expansion of the team. Above all, it will allow us to be faster on the global market, which is vital for us. The expansion of the product will focus on the Russian, Spanish, German, and English markets.