Swiss Reinvention: Wingman Ventures Transforms into Founderful, Targets $120M Fund


Swiss venture capital firm Wingman Ventures, now rebranded as Founderful, is actively scouting Switzerland’s top startups, expanding its diverse portfolio from mobile commerce to robotics. The Zurich-based venture capital firm, focusing on pre-seed startups, announced today it is rebranding as Founderful and has already raised $85 million for its new Fund II, with a target of closing $120 million in the next few months.

Founding partner Alex Stöckl emphasizes Founderful’s disruptive approach, particularly in supporting pre-seed startups, noting its successful challenge to traditional models that often imposed unfavorable terms on founders. Launched in 2019 by Pascal Mathis and Lukas Weder, Founderful has made almost 50 investments over four years, with Fund I’s portfolio raising over $350 million in additional funding. The typical check size for Fund II ranges from $1 million for pre-seed to $2 million for seed-stage startups.

Founderful targets B2B software and industrial sectors, with a focus on first funding rounds. The portfolio spans robotics, industrial automation, AI, machine learning, computer vision, clean tech, climate tech, and construction tech. The firm nurtures Swiss talent through programs like Founderful Campus, where about two-thirds of entrepreneurs are graduates, doctorates, or researchers from top academic institutions.

Already deploying capital from Fund II, Founderful invests in startups like Chiral Nano, Nala Earth, Ascento, Saeki, Anthropos, Isospec Analytics, Eightinks, and Faive Robotics. The firm’s standardized support functions and processes, aligned with Swiss standards, aim to optimize value for founders and facilitate market leadership. Founderful’s commitment extends to doubling down on Switzerland, acting as the lead investor for the ten most ambitious founder teams each year in their first financing round.

In endorsing Founderful, Duolingo CTO Severin Hacker attests to the rare collaboration with an investor meticulously dedicated to creating value for the founders they back. Founderful’s strategic vision positions it as a pivotal player in Switzerland’s dynamic startup ecosystem, fostering innovation and market growth.

Source: Techcrunch