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Inside the Greek startup and VC ecosystem with Apostolos Apostolakis, co-founder and partner at VentureFriends

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VentureFriends (VF) had the first 100% private venture capital fund in Greece. Launched in 2016 by Apostolos Apostolakis and George Dimopoulos, both serial entrepreneurs with vast experience as angel investors. In 2018, the firm raised a second €50M fund with support from the European Investment Fund (EIF). VF has invested in over 37 companies, with 13 of the startups exceeding €1M ARR. 

Portfolio includes online delivery company InstaShop (whose record-breaking €302M exit happened in August 2020), marketplace startup Spotawheel and the prospective unicorn-to-be real estate startup Blueground. 

“Deciding to create a startup requires determination and a conscious decision to work very hard and maintain hard standards for your work in order for the company to be globally scalable. The way for people to understand what high standards are is to work in an environment that is demanding,” shared Apostolos Apostolakis with The Recursive team.

With a new bigger fund on the horizon, VentureFriends is now also potentially moving towards more regional investments, led by the belief that investing in other founders, cultures, and startups enhances the collective understanding of the space and ultimately improves the ecosystem.

Read more:  Innovation outside the capital: Looking for the next wave of emerging startups in cities across Bulgaria

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