Tips from DRUID.AI, Creatopy, Bunnyshell, Kinderpedia leaders on attracting SEED investment and business development

Investing in community building and attention to user experience are among the most important aspects that Kinderpedia’s founders are focusing on, even despite rapid international growth, said Evelina Necula, Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of the school management and communication digital solution Kinderpedia at Investors’ Day, an event organised by Techcelerator. In addition, Andreea Pleșea – Co-Founder DRUID.AI, Dan Oros – CEO Creatopy and Alin Dobra – CEO Bunnyshell talked about what they learned from attracting funding rounds worth millions of euros.

“You have to build your community, keep investing in it and what we need to learn now more than ever is that you should not only focus on monthly recurring revenue (MRR), but more on how people use the product day to day. We’ve reached a point where 85% of our users in the school segment use Kinderpedia every day. Another nine percent more use Kinderpedia two to three times a week. This is a commitment we’re making: not just to expand rapidly, but to support every school, to grow together. From our point of view, this is a very good investment because this way we avoid churn,” said Evelina Necula about the most important lessons she has learned since launching Kinderpedia.

From the early stage to Series A: well-researched reports, meetings, networking and a good story

In the panel “Local innovation with global potential: Raising Series A in Romania”, founders and CEOs such as Andreea Pleșea – Co-Founder DRUID.AI, Dan Oros – CEO Creatopy and Alin Dobra – CEO and Co-Founder Bunnyshell talked about what they learned from attracting millions of euros rounds in 2023. The panel was moderated by Cristian Dascălu, Co-Founder and Managing Partner Techcelerator.

If you’re an early stage start-up it’s easier to attract investment because you’re not negotiating based on numbers, but you’re assessing more the ability to execute, but for a scale-up you need to secure potential funders in advance because it can take at least three months to raise a funding round. You have to be prepared to have multiple meetings, lots of follow-up meetings, well-done reports, and again, follow-up meetings. Because by the time you get to the investors’ committee, you have to convince the analysts that you deserve and for this you need well-documented financial reports and a good story,” said Andreea Pleșea PhD, Co-founder and Global VP at DRUID.AI.


She added that DRUID.AI plans to have 1,000 customers by the end of 2024 – first half of 2025. DRUID.AI will also focus on the US market – the company is already in the process of moving its office from Dallas to New York.

“In this period, any start-up that wants to attract funding needs to pay attention to the growth rate, retention – especially the net revenue retention and, thirdly, to monthly recurring revenue,” said Dan Oros, CEO of Creatopy.

The Creatopy manager added that it’s important to have good relationships in the industry and that when you decide to attract an investment, to devote especially to this goal.

“Those who want to attract funding in the next period must have solid numbers in terms of growth, revenue, retention, because otherwise I don’t think they will have a chance to attract investors,” said Alin Dobra, Co-Founder and CEO of Bunnyshell.

“In the almost six years since its launch, Techcelerator has helped more than 200 start-ups to grow, some of which have attracted total investments of more than 40 million. Our programmes are mainly focused on start-ups in the seed investment phase – from a few hundred thousand euros up to two million euros. But all our flagship programs – AdvancingAI, Investment Readiness, Scale Match and Startup Reaktor – support these start-ups to grow internationally and become attractive to VCs and investments of millions or tens of millions of euros. In 2024 we will continue these programs and add new ones, increasing the number of Romanian-founded companies that we help to go beyond the SEED investment and internationalization stage as quickly as possible and, in a few years, attract Series A rounds like our guests tonight”, stated Cristian Dascălu, Co-Founder and Managing Partner Techcelerator.

Thus, as part of these initiatives to support early-stage companies, eight local start-ups presented their pitches in front of a jury composed of Dan Mihăescu – Founding Partner GapMinder VC, Mircea Ghiță – Country Manager SeedBlink in Romania, Dan Călugareanu – Partner Early Game Ventures, Alexandru Seran – Investor at Hellen’s Rock Capital and Robert Herscovici – Investment Manager GapMinder VC.

The eight start-ups are:

SalesOMMO – startup that creates a sales management platform with features that enable companies to automate their sales processes, improve customer communication and track sales performance;

Cortex Hub – automates API integrations using artificial intelligence. For customers, these developments are ten times faster and ten times cheaper;

Youni – artificial intelligence-based app that allows students to identify and apply to the right university;

NS Edge – enables companies to collect and analyse in real-time data from different sources in a graphical format so they can take faster and more effective decisions to identify potential cyberattacks; – acts as an intermediary between the customer and the client support department. All questions and tasks that are repetitive are resolved automatically. The product quickly analyzes customer questions, identifies the intent behind the message and provides contextually appropriate and relevant answers; – SaaS platform that simplifies e-commerce operations. Enables integration between e-commerce platforms, marketplaces, couriers and other software to increase sales and operational efficiency;

theCord – a SaaS platform dedicated to optimizing the efficiency of remote teams by analyzing their interactions (team dynamics) in online meetings;

AmabiexAi – a digital assistant supporting automated, continuous and supervised medical monitoring and interventions. It combines facial imaging techniques (photoplethysmography – rPPG), generative artificial intelligence and advanced algorithms to change the way of delivering digital health diagnostic, monitoring, prevention and treatment of chronic pathologies

The event opened with a recital by young artists Raluca Ciula (clarinet), Irina Petrescu (piano) and Claudiu Șuțu (saxophone), three of the scholarship holders of the Tinere Talente programme (Young Talents programme) run by Fundația Regală Margareta a României (The Royal Foundation Margaret of Romania).

The event was moderated by Marion Hegarty, ambassador for Romania of Women in Tech Global and Claudiu Jojatu, founder of Milk&Cookies Studio.