Folklore 2019 — A year in review


Nicole McCallum

December 18, 2019

As 2019 comes to a close, it’s time to reflect on a big year that has been at Folklore. We continue to be inspired by our work and the exceptional founders and companies we have backed.

So without further ado, here’s a bite-sized recap of this year.


Investing in the next generation of ‘impossible’

Folklore invests in the next generation of ‘impossible’ companies and the legends who are building them.

Investment in Swoop Aero:
This year, we welcomed Swoop Aero to our portfolio, the world’s first long-range, autonomous drone company for last-mile medical logistics.

Investment in Wonde:
We also welcomed Wonde, a UK founded company reshaping the distribution and implementation of education technology in classrooms globally. Folklore invested in its seed round with Hannah Field stepping on to the board.

Backing HealthMatch to go global:
We were thrilled to back HealthMatch once again, leading its most recent $6M capital raise. Since our initial seed investment 18 months ago, HealthMatch has emerged from a founder vision to a product in testing to a company that now counts thousands of patients globally and exclusive partnerships with international pharma giants.

Doubling down on Auror:
raised a sizeable (undisclosed) follow-on round from Folklore and Reinventure to accelerate its growth globally.

Portfolio companies going global

2019 was a year of international expansion for our portfolio companies…

🏥 HealthMatch closed a partnership with multiple pharma companies, including global giant Roche and expanded into Asia-Pac.

🦅 Swoop Aero secured its Australia CASA license, and has won every commercial medical drone tender globally. It now operates in Malawi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Vanuatu, and New Zealand.

📚 Wonde’s latest capital raise will supercharge its global growth in more than 43,000 schools across Australia, New Zealand and the UK.

🦸 Auror expanded the team to the US, UK and built out its AUS team, and built a brand new office in Auckland.

🇬🇧 Mentorloop launched in the UK to resounding success, with the company doubling over the last 12 months as mentoring experiences a quiet revolution.

Our amazing team grew

Collectively, Folklore has 70+ years of founding, operating and investing experience. And this year, we were pumped to welcome two new people to the bench…

Nicole McCallum joined as Head of Community. Read her joining blog post here.

Toby Coleman joined as Head of Investor Relations, after working at Goldman Sachs, Perpetual and BNP Paribas.

We couldn’t be more thrilled for Hannah Field’s promotion to Principal! Prior to joining Folklore, Hannah worked in the early-stage operational roles at Pandora Radio, Dropbox and Canva. Since joining Folklore, Hannah has made an incredible contribution, including leading our recent investment into Wonde.

Out and about in the community

We are passionate supporters of the Aussie startup ecosystem. This year we hosted, mentored and spoke at a ton of events. Here are a few of our 2019 community highlights:

Highlighting the importance of seed funding in Australia

Folklore believes that investment into ‘impossible’ early-stage companies, born from bold missions, that have an opportunity to achieve extraordinary results, fuelled by the availability of risk capital from experienced VCs, is not only good business its good for the ecosystem as a whole.

Throughout the year, reports have emerged highlighting the downward trends in seed-stage funding in the Australian startup ecosystem. Read Alister’s observation on seed investment as it stands at the end of 2019.

Looking towards the future — 2020

We’re looking forward to 2020 and bigger things on the horizon.

In the new year we'll continue to:

  • Invest in the “impossible” — big opportunities and big missions that might seem impossible or improbable, but will become a magnetic force for talent, customers and capital under the leadership of exceptional founders.
  • Support our founders to reach their full potential and mentor the next generation of founders we meet.
  • Double down on seed we will continue to invest in seed stage companies and fuel the next generation of incredible Aussie startups.
  • Raise our third fund — you heard it here.

⭐🎄We hope you all have a happy and safe holiday season 🎄⭐

See you next year! 👋

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