“We admire the daring and would rather invest in them, then taking a cautious approach.”
Sometimes you make a bet, and it doesn’t work out. This is an essential part of the game. Venture investing is a risky endeavour and for every huge success there are many failures. There has been lots of commentary on why Lesara didn’t make it. We don’t want to comment on this. For us bets like Lesara are important for the market and it is crucial as an investor to look at why you invested in them. It was an unusual bet for us, as we are not B2C entrepreneurs and certainly not e-commerce experts.
Roman won us over with his vision though. He wanted to build a fast fashion retailer by deploying a tech- and data-driven business model and integrating the value chain down to sourcing in Asia. I was a small angel investor, and I got in early. Rarely mentioned in the reviews of Lesara are Roman Kirsch’s qualities as a founder and entrepreneur. He has shown a great execution and is a driven, talented mover. After the angel round quite a few brand name investors followed and bet €80m+ on his vision.
As everyone now knows, Lesara failed and ended up belly up. Our learning was: What we simply underestimated how much money B2C needs, because it was not our home turf. In a way the experience spurred our laser sharp focus on B2B software today. What we still believe in is brave entrepreneurs willing to succeed or fail big, like Roman was willing with Lesara. Without these there would be neither big opportunities nor big successes. It’s easy to be smart in hindsight. We admire the daring and would rather invest again in them on their next endeavour, then taking a cautious approach.