Startup Istanbul, a startup event that takes place in Istanbul every year, has launched a VC fund to invest in pre-seed startups in emerging markets. The target size of the fund is USD 10 million and it is expected to hit the first close within the next few weeks, Burak Buyukdemir, the founder and managing partner of Startup Istanbul Fund said in a conversation with MENAbytes.
Tim Draper, the American investor as well as founder of Draper University and Draper Venture Network, has joined the fund as a limited partner. Startup Istanbul Fund has also secured commitments from other investors, but is not ready to share those details yet.
As part of its events, Startup Istanbul also hosts different startups every year that are picked from thousands of applicants. As a result of this, they’ve been able to build a deal flow and now want to invest in them. The company has previously invested its own money too in startups through its accelerator Etohum and includes companies like Camby, Invidyo, and Connected2.me in its portfolio.
“Over the last few years, more than 700 startups from more than 60 countries have pitched their stories on the Startup Istanbul stage. Together, these startups have raised a staggering USD 260 million in total funding,” Startup Istanbul said in a statement.
All the investments that the Startup Istanbul Fund will make will be in firms that have participated in Startup Istanbul. They aim to invest USD 50,000 in 100 startups and then follow-on in the their best portoflio companies with up to USD 200,000 per investment.
Startup Istanbul Fund is sector-agnostic and will invest in emerging markets in Asia, Africa, and the MENA region.
This article was first published by MENAbytes.