Deal “unprecedented” for Hungary, says angel investor HunBAN chief
The Ljubljana-based startup has specialized in online marketing data since it launched two years ago and now has the backing of angel investors from Hungary, Slovenia, Germany, France, Switzerland and Hong-Kong. Datafy has developed a unique algorithm which provides its over 500 clients from the US, the EU and Asia with automated data that they can access in a highly targeted way to put an end to poorly targeted spam emails.
Igor Panjan, Datafy CEO said “While our partners and competitors solve their problems with hiring new people or trying to buy the data (…) we collect, clean, merge and package the data automatically,” said Panjan. Datafy was born during a sales push in the US, Panjan said. “We started to mine for data, for example from hotel managers in Hawaii and I said to my development team ‘what if we could somehow optimize this process?”
“Our lead investor is Niko Slavnic,” Panjan revealed. “We initially knew Niko and other Slovenians from European Business Angels Network (EBAN) as customers, not our investors, but having seen what we could deliver so soon after launching, we began to talk investment,” he said. “From the beginning, we were searching for people with rich business network, know-how and experience: this is more important than money,” Panjan underlined.
Six HunBAN members have invested EUR 50,000 in Datafy. Antal Karolyi, president of HunBAN said “This deal has a significance far beyond the transaction itself. The commitment and dynamism of the team convinced me. With the additional benefit of business angels from six countries they now have a truly international support network. We have executed a complex, cross-border deal with the participation of six local private investors. This reassures our vision that we can create a well-organized and transaction-oriented network in Hungary,” Karolyi said.
Karolyi underlined the importance of co-investment. “Countries in our region face the challenge of venture capital markets that are too small to compete individually. With a strongly connected regional market we can punch above our weight,” Karolyi said.
Since officially founding in April 2017, HunBAN has built up a network of over 90 subscriber angels and further deals are already in the pipeline. The association is open for new active members and is constantly verifying investment opportunities. “We are looking forward to shaking up the startup culture of the region,” Karolyi said.