Endeavor Selects Seven Entrepreneurs at First Virtual International Selection Panel

The event kicked off like many do: with cocktail hour. An international group of entrepreneurs and business leaders sipped on beverages of their choosing, traded stories, and discussed their work — but at this event each sat in their respective kitchens, living rooms, or home offices spread across various time zones. 

Several weeks ago, like many other organizations, Endeavor had to revisit our upcoming events. Meeting in person was out of the question for the Brooklyn International Selection Panel (ISP), expected to convene over 100 attendees from around the world from March 23-25.

But with uncertainty as to when such an in-person event would next be possible, rather than cancel the event, Endeavor’s Entrepreneur Selection & Growth team moved rapidly to pioneer a new solution.

Panelists interviewed candidates, deliberated, and voted via Zoom to select the next class of Endeavor Entrepreneurs at Endeavors first Virtual ISP.

They organized an Endeavor first: a Virtual ISP held entirely over Zoom, during which Endeavor selected seven new entrepreneurs from six countries — including the first ever from Ireland, where Endeavor recently launched an office. Endeavor now supports 2,046 entrepreneurs leading 1,278 companies in 37 markets around the world (read more about the newly selected entrepreneurs below).

The Virtual ISP was presented by Softbank, with additional support from AXA, Bain, Brown Rudnick, EY, HSBC, Silicon Valley Bank, and Zoom.

Held eight times per year, the ISP is the culmination of a rigorous multi-step selection process to identify high-impact entrepreneurs who demonstrate the potential to leverage Endeavor’s resources and mentorship to create large-scale wealth and jobs, and are committed to reinvesting their time and money in their local entrepreneurship ecosystems to help others take off. Beyond the selection process, ISPs are also unique international gatherings that bring entrepreneurs, dedicated business leaders and staff together across borders and industries, and allow them to make connections they may never have otherwise.

“ISPs are really where you can see the magic of Endeavor come alive,” said Endeavor CEO Linda Rottenberg. “We knew it would be challenging to try to recreate the event virtually, but we saw it as a real opportunity to raise the bar and continue to bring people together as remote work becomes the new reality for many.”

One way this became achievable was through downsizing the gathering to just a handful of highly experienced entrepreneurs and panelists. Over the course of three days at the Virtual ISP, panelists utilized Zoom breakout rooms to interview a small group of high-caliber entrepreneur candidates about their businesses. The selection process itself required little adaptation. In “deliberation rooms” — private Zoom breakout rooms with only Endeavor staff and panelists — panelists evaluated the entrepreneurs on their potential for high-impact growth, discussed which candidates should be selected to become Endeavor Entrepreneurs, then voted unanimously to select the newest Endeavor Entrepreneurs.

Panelists included: Bob Becheck (Partner, Bain & Company), Henry “Hank” Dudgeon III (Founder, Rubicon Global), Shari Loessberg (Faculty, MIT), Armando Mann (Founder, Amdak; Endeavor Entrepreneur), Chris Schroeder (Venture Investor and Author, Startup Rising, Next Billion Ventures), Javier Villamizar (Operating Partner, SoftBank Investment Advisers), Mariah Chase (CEO, ELOQUII), Martin Escobari (Managing Director, General Atlantic), Alejandro Jaimes (Chief Scientist & SVP of AI, Dataminr), Chris Misner (Advisor & Investor, Roblox), Mauro Schnaidman (Founder, Schnaidman & Partners), and Nicolas Szekasy (Co-founder & Managing Partner, Kaszek Ventures; Endeavor Global and Endeavor Argentina Board Member; Endeavor Entrepreneur). 

It was amazing we could do an ISP and select Endeavor Entrepreneurs in this environment when all other events around the world are getting cancelled,” said Kaszek Ventures’ Nicolas Szekasy, an Endeavor Global and Endeavor Argentina Board Member and alumni Endeavor Entrepreneur (MercadoLibre), who served as a panelist at the virtual ISP. 

“Thank you to the truly exceptional panelists and entrepreneurs, and dedicated Endeavor staff, whose global perspective, unwavering commitment, abundant flexibility, and generous sense of humor made this an unforgettable experience and set an ambitious precedent,” Rottenberg said. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome seven new Endeavor Entrepreneurs to the network.”

As part of Endeavor’s network, the entrepreneurs selected at the Virtual ISP will gain access to comprehensive, strategic, global support services, including introductions to local and international business mentors, investors, and volunteers from Fortune 500 consulting firms who will help them address key needs.

Endeavor Entrepreneurs have had a significant track record of impact. Endeavor Entrepreneurs have created 3 million jobs, generated $20 billion in revenue in 2018, and help build sustainable growth models in their home countries.

Learn more about the companies and entrepreneurs selected below.


Entrepreneurs: Mariano Faria and Geraldo Thomaz Junior
Company: VTEX
Description: Founded in 1999, VTEX is a Brazilian multinational cloud commerce that offers a SAAS platform and omnichannel solutions for large companies such as Walmart, Adidas, Sony, Lego, Havaianas, Samsung, The North Face, Osklen, Levis, among others. Founded as a software house developing custom applications, in 2007 it won a bid to develop Walmart’s e-commerce platform, which it launched in 2010. It has since grown to support 2K+ enterprise clients in 28 countries, with 14 offices in Latin America, Europe, and the US.


Entrepreneur: Kimon Angelides
Company: Vivante Health
Description: Vivante Health offers a digital platform for measuring and improving the health of one’s gut. The platform, GIThrive, is enabled by a non-invasive handheld breath monitor called the GIMate. Users simply breathe into the GIMate, which reads the breath and derives insights about the user’s gut health in order to trigger meaningful interventions, such as tailored diet suggestions and contact with healthcare professionals as needed.


Entrepreneur: Akshay Garg
Company: Kredivo
Description: As the 4th largest population in the world, Indonesia has a $940B GDP, nearly 100M smartphone users, and around 80M productive urban millennials. Despite the large population and economy, Indonesia faces a huge gap in credit penetration: only 3.2% among a population of 260M. One source of the problem is that creditworthy millennials are getting rejected by traditional banks due to thin credit files. Kredivo addresses this problem by giving access to instant credit for urban millennials through an all-digital, seamless process to help them conserve their current cash flow and pay overtime at bank-like interest rates.


Entrepreneur: Barry Napier
Company: Cubic Telecom
Description: In an increasingly digitized world, being able to offer customers seamless in-device global connectivity is critical, but Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) have struggled with the often expensive and cumbersome process of integrating with multiple Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in multiple markets in order to achieve this. Enter Cubic: an IoT company offering seamless and affordable global Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) data services all from one SIM card. By leveraging its core network, and partnerships with 70+ MNO’s in 180+ markets, Cubic provides its clients and their end users a flexible and simple way to connect, no matter where they are in the world.


Entrepreneur: Ekechi Nwokah
Company: Migo
Description: Migo is a cloud-based platform that partners with banks, mobile operators, retailers and payment processors in emerging markets to provide credit to underserved consumers. Migo leverages the data sets of its partners to originate, underwrite and distribute loans to their customers, significantly reducing the cost of delivering liquidity to lower income segments.  The customers can use this credit line to make purchases from a merchant or withdraw cash without the need for point-of-sale hardware or plastic cards.


Entrepreneur: Nguyen An Nguyen
Company: Trusting Social
Description: Trusting Social enables financial institutions to accurately assess the creditworthiness of overlooked individuals, both with and without existing credit histories. The company operates mainly in Vietnam, India, and Indonesia, and provides its credit rating services to banks, non-banking financial institutions, fintechs, and consumer internet platforms. Trusting Social currently offers three services: Credit insights on individuals, targeted customer acquisition & KYC identity and verification services. Trusting Social has raised over $27M from prominent investors including Sequoia and 500 Startups, and the company is on track to provide its 1 billionth credit score by the middle of 2020.

Endeavor Launches in Western New York with Grants from Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation, HSBC Bank USA, Wegmans Food Markets and Farash Foundation to Support High-Impact Entrepreneurs

During this time of economic uncertainty, Endeavor will help ensure that WNY’s most promising entrepreneurs have the resources they need to scale their businesses

Endeavor, a global organization that supports and accelerates high-impact entrepreneurs, has launched a new office in Western New York (WNY) to fuel growth and economic development in the region.

Leveraging partnerships with The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation, HSBC Bank USA, Wegmans Food Markets, and the Max and Marian Farash Charitable Foundation, as well as backing from local business leaders, Endeavor WNY will support founders and companies in WNY that have passed through the initial startup phase and demonstrate the potential for rapid expansion and scale.

“While we’ve been preparing to launch Endeavor in Western New York for more than a year, our arrival obviously comes at a very important time. When economies turn down, entrepreneurs turn up. We see enormous potential to help Buffalo and Rochester’s most innovative entrepreneurs scale up and multiply their impact on the region by investing in, mentoring and inspiring the next generation,” said Endeavor Co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg.

Founded in 1997, Endeavor has helped 2,000 entrepreneurs build more than 1,200 companies in 35+ markets throughout Latin America, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa, and North America. Companies led by Endeavor Entrepreneurs generated combined revenues of $20 billion in 2018 and have created 3 million jobs in their local economies. Endeavor Entrepreneurs commit to mentoring and investing in the next generation of founders.

Endeavor WNY will identify high-impact entrepreneurs in and around Buffalo and Rochester and provide them access to a global network of markets, industry leaders, investors, and talent, helping to expand their ventures into enterprises that can propel the local economy and have a large impact in the community. The new office will be Endeavor’s eighth affiliate in the U.S., with offices previously launched in Atlanta, Detroit, Colorado, Louisville, Miami, Northwest Arkansas, and Puerto Rico.

“With all of their unique assets, including their global funding network, Endeavor WNY will significantly increase overall capacity in the entrepreneurial ecosystem of this region,” said Lavea Brachman, Vice President of Programs at the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. “By reaching both communities of Buffalo and Rochester, this will be an opportunity to foster entrepreneurship connectivity and cross-city collaboration, as well as encourage inclusive economic growth.

”I’ve been a banker to local businesses for nearly my entire career, and I’ve seen first-hand what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur, and how startup businesses make powerful contributions to our communities,” said Gregory Duval, Regional Executive and Managing Director for the Great Lakes Region, HSBC Bank USA. “I’m excited to be working alongside Endeavor to support local entrepreneurs, who will help us restart the Western New York economy and support our economic well-being over the longer term.”

By focusing on scaleup companies that are generally Series A-stage and beyond, Endeavor WNY will have a unique, additive role in WNY’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. The office’s efforts will build on the work of other organizations that have helped drive early-stage startup creation and venture capital investment in WNY in recent years, such as the University at Buffalo, RIT, 43North, Launch NY, Z80 Labs, Techstars Buffalo, the WNY Venture Association, the Rochester Angel Network, the Buffalo Angels, NextCorps, Luminate, Excell Technology Ventures, Varia Ventures, Invest Buffalo Niagara, Greater Rochester Enterprise, the Upstate Capital Association and others.

“Supporting growth in our region is a priority for Wegmans,” said Colleen Wegman, President of Wegmans Food Markets. “Endeavor WNY’s goal is to ensure these high potential entrepreneurs will have the support they need to grow and establish themselves in our community.”

“The Farash Foundation is delighted to be among the funders helping to bring this economic engine to upstate New York and specifically to Rochester,” said Holli Budd, Foundation executive director. “This meshes directly with our Foundation’s continuing focus on encouraging entrepreneurship, a key priority for our founders.”

The organization is a 501(c)3 nonprofit governed and supported by a founding board of directors made up of:

  • John Somers (Endeavor WNY Board Chair) – CEO, Harmac Medical Products 
  • Greg Duval – Regional Executive and Managing Director, HSBC
  • Gene Gramza – Managing Partner, Buffalo, Ernst & Young
  • Scott Stenclik – CEO, Aleron
  • Deborah Biedenkopf – CEO, MB2Group 
  • Christine Whitman – CEO, Complemar Partners 

“By their nature, entrepreneurs embrace uncertainty, face adversity head-on, and solve big problems. That’s why it’s such an important time to have Endeavor WNY help founders in Western New York receive the support, connections and resources they need to scale their businesses. Together, we will tackle the challenges ahead and create new opportunities for the local economy,” said Endeavor WNY Board Chair John Somers.

The office will be led by John Gavigan, who will serve as the founding Managing Director. Gavigan is a WNY native with over 25 years of experience as an entrepreneur, team builder, and community leader in both Buffalo and Rochester. Most recently, Gavigan served as principal at Gamilax Services, COO at SomaDetect, and Executive Director of 43North.

“We’re living through extraordinary times and entrepreneurs are likely to usher in a wave of innovation and creativity. New businesses account for nearly all net new job creation in our country, so it’s critical that we build on the recent growth of Western New York’s entrepreneurial ecosystem to ensure the strength of our local economy for generations to come,” said Endeavor WNY Managing Director John Gavigan. “I’m greatly honored to have the opportunity to lead Endeavor WNY and help meet the needs of the growing pool of scaleup companies in our community.”

Endeavor WNY has also welcomed Alan Rosenhoch as the office’s Entrepreneur Selection & Growth Account Manager. Rosenhoch spent the last dozen years at Invest Buffalo Niagara, where he most recently served as director of domestic business development.

To learn more about Endeavor, visit www.endeavor.org. Interested entrepreneurs can connect with the WNY team by emailing john.gavigan@endeavor.org or alan.rosenhoch@endeavor.org.

Upcoming Endeavor Insight Research on Women Entrepreneurs

Women are an incredibly powerful force in the U.S. economy. Today, more than 11 million women-led businesses generate more than $1.6 trillion in revenue and create more than 9 million jobs. However, running a business isn’t easy. In order to identify how to help more women entrepreneurs to scale their companies, Endeavor Insight and Google for Startups teamed up to interview and survey more than 1,000 women founders.

More women are working as entrepreneurs than at any previous time in the United States. The rate of women-owned businesses has grown by over 140% since 1997. Still, women are less likely than men to start a business, and women-owned businesses are significantly less likely to scale to significant levels, such as reaching $25 million in annual revenues or employing at least 50 people.

Overall, women entrepreneurs who built businesses that scale report that their experiences are similar to those of men in the same industries, but there are clear differences between women who scale and those who don’t when it comes to access to networks. On average, women who scale tend to have better networks than those who do not. These networks include mentors who have been successful entrepreneurs or executives as well as relationships with potential funders and customers.

How do they do this? Successful women entrepreneurs shared numerous stories of doing “crazy amounts of networking,” creating relationships with successful mentors, and working to join informal groups of women executives in their cities.

This represents an important opportunity for organizations who work to support women founders. Interviews conducted for this project suggest that the lack of access to a supportive network can make it difficult to secure crucial building blocks to scaling their companies, from access to capital, strong mentors, business tools, and talent to build a strong team and achieve high growth.

Closing this entrepreneurship gap presents a huge opportunity: If women scaled businesses at the same rate as men, it could add as much as $500 billion in additional productivity each year to U.S. gross domestic product.

More information from this research will be published later this spring. Please reach out to Maha Abdelazim at maha.abdelazim@endeavor.org if you would like more information.

Javier Olivan Joins Endeavor Global Board of Directors

Endeavor announced today that Javier Olivan, Vice President of Central Products at Facebook, has joined the Endeavor Global Board of Directors. Wences Casares, one of the earliest selected Endeavor Entrepreneurs and CEO and Founder of Xapo, is stepping down after nearly seven years of service.

When Javier started at Facebook in 2007, he joined the company as the Head of International Growth. At the time, Facebook had fewer than 50 million people using the service and a very small portion of that outside of the US. Over the last 12 years, Javier and his team have helped the company grow to a community of over two billion people with more than 87% of those people accessing Facebook from outside the US. He continues to lead this team that help people break down barriers, connect to Facebook and create communities around the world.

“Javier has unparalleled experience building and scaling some of the most important tech products today. I’m thrilled to welcome him to Endeavor’s Board of Directors, and am confident he’ll make an important impact,” said Endeavor Co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg.

“I have been a huge fan of Endeavor’s mission and team for many years. I am honored to join their global board and am looking forward to supporting the next generation of founders and innovators across different countries and regions,” said Javier.

As Vice President of Central Products at Facebook, Javier reports to the CEO and leads the central product teams that span the Facebook family of apps. This includes Facebook’s growth efforts, content enforcement efforts, ads and business platform, commerce, payments and social impact efforts. Beyond his product teams, he also leads several other groups including Facebook’s teams for data science, internationalization, UX research and content strategy.

“We are delighted to welcome Javier to the board. We believe his perspective and expertise will add immense value to Endeavor and the high-impact entrepreneurs we support globally as we continue to scale as an organization,” said Endeavor Global Chairman Edgar Bronfman, Jr.

Endeavor is a 22 year-old organization that is leading the global movement to drive long-term economic growth by selecting, mentoring, and accelerating the best high-impact entrepreneurs around the world. Founded in 1997 by Linda Rottenberg and Peter Kellner, Endeavor has helped more than 2,000 of these entrepreneurs build more than 1,200 companies across 35+ markets, which generated combined revenues of $20 billion in 2018. To date, companies led by Endeavor Entrepreneurs have created 3 million jobs, and often go on to mentor and invest in the next generation of founders or serve on the boards of Endeavor offices.

Endeavor Selects 23 Entrepreneurs from 11 Markets at the 93rd International Selection Panel in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Endeavor selected 23 high-impact entrepreneurs leading 14 companies from 11 markets at the 93rd International Selection Panel (ISP) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, held February 10-12, 2020. Endeavor now supports 2,039 entrepreneurs leading 1,272 companies in 35+ markets around the world.

The ISP is the culmination of a rigorous multi-step selection process to identify high-impact entrepreneurs who demonstrate the potential to leverage Endeavor’s resources and mentorship to create large-scale wealth and jobs, and are committed to reinvesting their time and money in their local entrepreneurship ecosystems to help others take off.

Over the course of the three-day event, panelists drawn from Endeavor’s extensive network of board members, mentors, supporters, and experienced Endeavor Entrepreneurs, interview entrepreneur candidates about their businesses, evaluating them on their potential for high-impact growth, and deliberating on which candidates should be selected to become Endeavor Entrepreneurs. Panelists must vote unanimously for a candidate to become an Endeavor Entrepreneur.

“Endeavor’s selection process is designed to identify entrepreneurs who have the potential to make a big impact locally and globally, not only by scaling their businesses but also by reinvesting their success. The Riyadh ISP drew extraordinarily talented founders from around the world, and we’re thrilled to welcome 23 new Endeavor Entrepreneurs!” said Endeavor Co-founder and CEO Linda Rottenberg.

Once selected, Endeavor Entrepreneurs gain access to comprehensive customized services, including introductions to local and international business mentors and volunteers from Fortune 500 consulting firms who will help them address key needs.

Endeavor Entrepreneurs have had a significant track record of impact. Endeavor Entrepreneurs have created 3 million jobs, generated $20 billion in revenue in 2018, and help build sustainable growth models in their home countries.

The 93rd ISP was hosted in partnership with Small and Medium Enterprises Authority (Momsha’at). Endeavor thanks 93rd ISP Strategic Sponsors Saudi Telecom Company (STC) and Riyad Bank.

Upcoming ISPs in 2020 will be held in Brooklyn, New York (March 23-25), London, U.K. (May 11-13), Bali, Indonesia (June 30-July 2), Nairobi, Kenya (August 10-12), Lake Como, Italy (September 14-16), Palo Alto, California (October 26-28), and São Paulo, Brazil (December 9-11). For more information on these events, please contact ISP@endeavor.org.

Learn more about the companies and entrepreneurs selected in Riyadh below:


Entrepreneur: Pedro Conrade
Company: Neon
Description: Neon is a mobile first digital challenger bank focused exclusively on the Brazilian market. With an intense emphasis on user experience and an intuitive interface, Neon offers banking services, savings products (personal financial management tools), and credit cards & loans to individuals and small businesses. Neon is focused on servicing mid and low income individuals, young people, and the unbanked, who typically face barriers opening a standard bank account. Within four minutes a customer can start an account and verify their identity with facial recognition; once a small amount of cash is deposited, customers can instantly start using a digital credit card. Without needing to maintain physical operations, Neon passes on savings in the form of low transparent pricing and fees as compared to incumbent banks.

Entrepreneur: Marcelo Lombardo
Company: Omie
Description: Omie is a cloud based ERP for SMEs containing everything a manager needs to run a small business within the complex regulatory and tax environment of Brazil, including financials, invoicing, inventory, manufacturing, CRM, and POS. To provide the best user experience, Omie has opened up its platforms to third parties to develop vertical specific features through its own API. In addition, Omie partners with banks and fintechs to offer financial solutions, such as credit, payments, and financing of receivables to SMEs across many industries. Using a franchise model, the company leverages local accounting firms for lead generation, gaining an edge over companies competing for digital marketing space. Accounting firms get the benefit of increased productivity as a result of standardization and digitization of their client’s information. Omie has also started a joint venture with four of the top accounting software providers in Brazil to create the next generation of accounting, payroll, and tax software.


Entrepreneurs: Luay Torky and Suhail Torky
Company: SAAL Invest
Description: SAAL Invest is an Egyptian restaurant group currently expanding its flagship brand, Buffalo Burger. With over 30 branches across the country, Buffalo Burger is a leader in the local fast food burger market. A sound franchise model and deep knowledge of the Egyptian market has allowed SAAL to continue to innovate and dominate local fast food, and the group is looking forward to further success throughout the region.


Entrepreneur: Vikra Ijas and Alfatih Timur
Company: Kitabisa
Description: Kitabisa (“we can” in Indonesian), Indonesia’s first and largest crowdsourcing platform, is built to channel the country’s uniquely philanthropic ethos into funding for personal medical emergencies, humanitarian causes, and other projects sponsored by individuals and charitable organizations. Kitabisa caters to three user groups: (a) organizations, who leverage Kitabisa’s in-house marketing agency to maximize donor acquisition efficiency; (b) donors, who value Kitabisa’s simplicity and the ability to donate to individual causes; and (c) individual campaigners, who are able to tap into previously unavailable funding.


Entrepreneurs: Abdallah Faza and Kais Sheikh Hasan
Company: Arabot
Description: Lousy customer service calls are ubiquitous, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Arabot changes the customer experience by offering the first intelligent Arabic chatbot backed up with AI and a deep machine learning framework capable of accurately and efficiently analyzing conversations across Arabic dialects. The bot aims to boost customer experience and automate tasks, while simultaneously reducing company operational costs. The platform has been able to garner significant traction in the region, securing large enterprises and corporations from both the private and public sector as clients. Arabot hopes to capture a growing share of a booming market: the global chatbot market size is $2.6B and is expected to reach $9.4B by 2024.

Entrepreneurs: Qais Sabri and Yousef Nassar
Company: Eon Dental
Description: Eon Dental (“Eon”) is the leading manufacturer of clear aligners – low-cost, plastic orthodontic devices used to adjust teeth – in the Middle East. Eon offers three primary products: (a) the direct-to-consumer OneTwoSmile brand, sold to individual patients, (b) the B2B2C Eon Aligner brand, sold to dentists and orthodontists seeking to offer aligners to their own patients, and (c) white-labeled aligners, sold to new entrants and small to medium-sized aligner companies who lack the expertise or desire to produce in-house.


Entrepreneurs: Christian Wessels and Jasper Graf von Hardenberg
Company: Daystar Power
Description: Daystar Power is working to close Africa’s power gap by providing commercial and industrial customers with cleaner, reliable and more affordable electricity. Offering pure solar and hybrid solar-fossil fuel power generation systems across West Africa, Daystar makes reliable, clean energy more accessible with a unique financing model that requires no upfront payment, transparent payment plans, and schedule maintenance.


Entrepreneurs: Carlos Ganoza and Alvaro Collas
Company: Quantum Talent
Description: 150 million workers in Latin America are either unemployed or employed informally, while the majority of large corporations complain that they can’t find the talent they need to expand their operations. Quantum Talent is committed to bringing hiring practices in Latin America out of the 1970s, and creating a world where firms can hire the best talent as fast and easy as hailing a taxi. Quantum Talent has developed a SaaS tool, an AI-enabled psychometric evaluation, to drive efficiency in the hiring process by predicting employee-role fit for blue- and pink-collar labor. Firms using Quantum Talent report significant improvements in employee productivity and turnover, and the company aims to connect 100 million people with well-matched employment opportunities within the $12B hiring market.


Entrepreneur: Paul Rivera
Company: Kalibrr
Description: Kalibrr aims to disrupt the white-collar recruiting industry through its AI-powered recruitment platform that recommends and matches jobs to job seekers based on their skills, experience, interests, and behavior. Clients using its platform save up to 90% of the time it takes to hire a qualified candidate. With presence in the Philippines and Indonesia, and many of the Philippines’ top companies as clients, Kalibrr aims to become the leader in AI-powered recruitment across Southeast Asia.

Entrepreneur: Ray Refundo
Company: Qwikwire
Description: Qwikwire is in the business of providing comprehensive real estate solutions for brokers and property developers. From SaaS property management solutions, SAP integrated billing and invoicing systems, cross-border settlements via licensed remittance channels, to property listing via our blockchain powered multi-listing engine.


Entrepreneurs: Moath Aldajan and Ammar Aldajan
Company: Al Hatab Bakery
Description: Alhatab Bakery is a 34-location retail chain in Saudi Arabia selling a wide variety of baked goods and gourmet specialties catered to local tastes. Its bakeries offer a combination of local and international breads, crackers, and pastries, in addition to decadent sweets and a counter where customers can purchase signature salads, dips, and appetizers. Its food and beverage selection reflects its Saudi roots, while preserving the essence and authenticity of local favorites with a health-forward twist.


Entrepreneur: Juan Desmonts
Company: Dosfarma
Description: Dosfarma is Spain’s largest licensed online pharmacy. With over 35,000 products  with 2 hour and next day delivery options, the company makes everything from cosmetics to over the counter drugs convenient and accessible for Spanish consumers. Dosfarma gives personal care and medical brands a direct and effective platform to reach customers through custom campaigns and sales.


Entrepreneur: Vilhelm Hedberg
Company: Ekar
Description: Ekar is the first and largest carshare operator in the Middle East; Ekar provides on-demand access to over 1,000+ pay-per-minute and long-term (daily or weekly) cars across the Gulf. Ekar empowers users with a seamless platform to get around the city via rental cars. Through the use of a smartphone app and installed technology in rental cars, users are able to easily search, book and unlock cars safely and securely for personal driving use.


Remembering Khaled Bichara

The Endeavor network — entrepreneurs, mentors, board and team, in Egypt and globally — mourns the tragic loss of Khaled Bichara, a first believer and a founding Board Member of our organization in Egypt, an Endeavor Mentor, and a true role model whose entrepreneurial journey has inspired countless of founders in Egypt and beyond, and whose contributions as a mentor, investor and a boss have impacted the lives of many, many others.

Khaled Bichara

“As a founding board member of Endeavor, we’ll always be indebted to the role he played in championing our mission in Egypt in our early years, and to his continued support to our entrepreneurs from then on,” said Ayman Ismail, Chairman of Endeavor Egypt. “Khaled’s leadership has touched so many lives, and his entrepreneurial successes inspired an entire generation of founders,” added Ismail.

Indeed, individually and through enabling platforms like Endeavor, Khaled never spared an effort to lend his support to founders in Egypt; known by everyone who’s engaged with him for his principled, thoughtful, and strategic guidance that have paved way for the success of many companies around us today.

“Khaled was an amazing human being and true leader in every sense of the word. His legacy is defined by the people he inspired, the lives he touched, and the impact he left behind. And he did it with such humility and grace. I hold a few people in high regard for their work and life ethic. Khaled was one of them.” said Amr Shady one of the earlier selected Endeavor Entrepreneurs from Egypt who later joined the organization’s board of directors.

Everyone who worked and engaged with Khaled could see his actions driven by a pure and firm belief in the role that successful founders like him play in catalyzing real, meaningful change that goes on to create jobs and spur innovation tangibly contributing to economic growth. Khaled once said, “Supporting small and medium-sized businesses is one of the best ways to give back to this country,” when asked about the importance of mentoring young founders and entrepreneurs in Egypt.

And he lived up to this belief in every possible way.

As we bid farewell to Khaled, and pay our respects to his family, friends and loved ones, we also honor his legacy, a hallmark of Egypt’s evolving entrepreneurship story.

“He is a great loss to the entrepreneurship community. His legacy will live on for generations to come,” Shady added.

Podcast: Masters of Scale Strategy Session Features Six Endeavor Entrepreneurs

When’s the right time for hypergrowth? Should you take investment when you don’t need the money? How do you deal with an exhausted team? Six Endeavor Entrepreneurs facing hyperfast growth had the opportunity to ask Endeavor Global Board Member Reid Hoffman (Co-founder, LinkedIn; Partner, Greylock Partners) their most pressing questions about raising capital, pivoting their product, bootstrapping vs. blitzscaling and more, on a special strategy session of his podcast Masters of Scale.

Listen to the episode here, featuring Endeavor Entrepreneurs Adalberto Flores (Kueski), Alejandro Artacho (Spotahome), Anabel Perez (Novopayment), Hande Cilingir (Insider), Nirmal Rajaram (Cita Rasa Prima), and Sergio Fogel (AstroPay), and cohosted by Harvard professor Youngme Moon, of the great HBS podcast After Hours.

Listen here on Apple, or wherever you get your podcasts.

January 2020 Newsletter

To view Endeavor’s January newsletter, a recap of all the top news stories from the past month, please CLICK HERE.

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Endeavor Catalyst Announces Full Deployment of Its $80M+ Fund II and Plans for Fund III

Endeavor Catalyst announced the full deployment of Endeavor Catalyst II at the end of 2019, investing the $80M+ fund in 78 companies led by 122 Endeavor Entrepreneurs in 26 growth markets globally. 

Endeavor Catalyst’s second fund (“Fund II”) saw a significant increase in the pace of investment as well as in geographic and industry diversity among investments.  Launched in March 2017, Fund II was fully deployed in less than three years.

“With its second fund now fully committed, Endeavor Catalyst has proven itself a win-win-win benefit for our entrepreneurs, LPs, and Endeavor as an organization,” said Linda Rottenberg, Co-founder and CEO of Endeavor. “Endeavor Catalyst provides Endeavor Entrepreneurs with the additional support they need while taking on the challenge of fundraising, and enables its LPs to share in their success; all while fostering Endeavor’s goal of becoming a self-sustaining organization worldwide.”

Endeavor Catalyst, which initially launched in 2012 as a concept, made between five and ten investments in each of its first four years, including investments in Globant (NYSE: GLOB) in Argentina and Yemeksepeti.com in Turkey (acquired for $589M in 2015). That rate has increased dramatically over the past three years, as Endeavor expands around the world and Endeavor Entrepreneurs increasingly raise capital from top tier global investors. Endeavor Catalyst invested in over 30 companies per year in calendar years 2018 and 2019. 

Today, Endeavor Catalyst’s portfolio includes companies operating in eight distinct industry verticals, from Fintech and Smart Cities to Healthcare and Education. Fintech was the fastest growing area of investment over the past two years. Notably, around 12% of the companies are led by women (in the United States, just 2% of VC dollars went to female founders in 2018). 

Endeavor Catalyst’s pioneering model has largely facilitated this diversity.  Endeavor Catalyst follows a rules-based approach, investing exclusively in Endeavor Entrepreneur-led companies raising equity rounds of $5M+ that are led by professional venture capital and growth equity funds. Following this approach, Fund II has joined record-breaking rounds from some of the fastest-growing companies around the world, including app-based mobility company SWVL, which raised the largest ever funding round for an Egyptian company; payments platform Cellulant, which raised one of the largest ever funding rounds in Africa; and Checkout.com, which raised the largest ever fintech Series A round in Europe catapulting it to unicorn status with a valuation of over $2B. Other unicorns in the Fund II portfolio include Brazil’s EBANX, Spain’s Cabify, Indonesia’s Bukalapak, and Colombia’s Rappi, which also achieved a partial exit in August 2019.  

“In markets around the world, Endeavor Entrepreneurs are not only solving problems at scale and disrupting traditional industries, but also fundamentally changing the way investors view entrepreneurship outside of Silicon Valley,” said Endeavor Catalyst Managing Director Allen Taylor. 

Endeavor Catalyst has invested in rounds led by many of the world’s leading venture capital and growth equity funds, providing its own LPs access and exposure to some of the fastest-growing companies all over the world. In Latin America, the MENA region, and parts of Europe, Endeavor Catalyst has been recognized as one of the most active equity investors.

“Seeing firms like Sequoia Capital and Andreessen Horowitz investing in Latin America, TPG investing in Africa, and General Atlantic investing in the MENA region tells you a lot about the potential in these markets,” noted Taylor.

In turn, Endeavor Catalyst has become a powerful platform for Endeavor Entrepreneurs to reinvest their success and personal gains in their peers.  Today, 50+ Endeavor Entrepreneurs have become investors in the Endeavor Catalyst funds, including in Endeavor Catalyst III, which is currently being raised and is targeted to be a $120M+ fund. 

And while Endeavor Catalyst has gained significant momentum, Jackie Carmel, Endeavor Catalyst Managing Director, notes: “We are just getting started!  Endeavor continues to raise the bar in its selection process and the Endeavor Catalyst pipeline is as active as it has ever been. As Endeavor continues to grow and expand its global reach, so does Endeavor Catalyst.”

Learn more about Endeavor Catalyst here.

2019 Endeavor Impact Report

2019 provided many opportunities for us to reflect on just how far Endeavor has come over the past 22 years, while looking to the future as we recommit to our core belief — that high-impact entrepreneurs hold the key to sustainable economic growth.

Among our highlights:

  • Endeavor is more global than ever. We’re now a network of 500 team members, nearly 400 board members, and 5,000 mentors. And this year, we selected our 2,000th Endeavor Entrepreneur. Today, Endeavor supports entrepreneurs leading more than 1,200 companies across a wide variety of industries in 35+ growth markets around the world.
  • Following last year’s launches in Vietnam, Nigeria, and Puerto Rico, we continued to extend our reach by opening new offices in Northwest Arkansas, Western New York, Colorado, and Ireland. These offices strengthen our presence across key regions and remind us that, when it comes to high-impact entrepreneurship, we are undoubtedly a global network. Endeavor’s expansion team is currently scoping new launch opportunities in Romania, Singapore, India, Canada, and Germany.
  • We achieved a full deployment of Endeavor Catalyst’s Fund II, investing an additional $70 million to support the expansion of 126 Endeavor Entrepreneur companies. And we ended the year with $100 million committed to our third fund. Endeavor Catalyst LP partners include board members from over 30 Endeavor offices as well as over 50 Endeavor Entrepreneurs.
A spread from Endeavor’s 2019 Impact Report with eight photos of entrepreneurs, reading “We Are Borderless”
  • We defined and shared our core values that guide our work, and will continue to steer us forward as we grow. Endeavor’s network is spread across multiple continents, countries, and cultures — our values bring us together, making us a truly borderless community.
  • Finally, we celebrated four exceptional Endeavor Entrepreneurs with The Lindas, an award honoring the entrepreneurs in our network who most embody these core values and the Endeavor spirit of dreaming crazy, scaling up, and paying it forward. From breaking barriers as the first LatAm tech company to go public on the NYSE, to training the next generation of women in STEM, each of our 2019 winners are demonstrating that success is not only defined by going big but also by giving back.

We’re thrilled to share Endeavor’s values and our remarkable global community of entrepreneurs with you in our 2018–2019 Impact Report, and remain inspired by what we have built together.

Read our report hereand join us in supporting high-impact entrepreneurs around the world with a year-end gift.

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