Spanish startup Jeff — which helps entrepreneurs launch and run their own business — is announcing a €90m Series C round, led by Delivery Hero backed fund DX Ventures.
The raise was split roughly evenly between debt and equity, and comes as the company sets its sights on profitability this year.
Jeff, founded in 2015, helps users launch and then manage businesses across a number of verticals — laundrettes, fitness clubs, beauty salons, massage studios, coffee shops and coworking spaces.
Would-be entrepreneurs need to have found and be renting the premises and stump up an initial €50k. That money is spent on buying the right equipment and supplies using Jeff’s established supply chains and network of suppliers. Founder Eloi Gómez says a business can be launched in 45 days using the platform.
Entrepreneurs then pay a €400 monthly fee, which lets them use Jeff’s brand and a range of business management tools. That includes things like a step-by-step marketing plan, partnerships guide, a customer-facing frontend app for taking bookings and consumer data insights.
To date, Jeff has launched more than 2,000 businesses in 42 countries.
The goal: profitability
As it’s become more difficult to raise cash from VCs with the economy going south, Jeff has — like many startups — shifted its focus from growth to profitability, and says it's looking to get there this year.
Gómez says it'll do this by doubling down on its laundrette vertical and bolstering the team that builds its AI-driven business advice tool.
Jeff will also use the round’s debt facility to fund its business financing product, Jeff Capital, which launched in April last year and lends money to users that need liquidity.
The company’s route to breakeven will be made easier by the fact that Jeff has made big layoffs in recent years. Employee headcount halved between 2020 and 2022, according to Dealroom.
Alongside Berlin-based DX Ventures, Clean Ventures, Stelac and Prism also participated in the round. Existing backers Nalpa and Alcor also got involved.
While Jeff’s franchising business model is fairly unique for a startup, a number of other European tech companies that support brick-and-mortar businesses have raised sizeable rounds in recent times.
- Belgian restaurant point-of-sale platform Deliverect raised $150m in January 2022.
- Spanish Factorial — a human resource platform for SMEs — raised $120m in October 2022.
- Berlin-based Uberall, which helps brick-and-mortar businesses increase visibility online, raised $115m in June 2021.