Day One with SquareOne! Goodbye Paua Ventures

Today, we’re not only launching our new brand but we’re also changing our name — and we couldn’t be more excited to share everything about it with you

Felix Plapperer
Inside SquareOne

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Paua Ventures has come a long way. Over the past decade the market has evolved and so have we. Therefore it was time for something new. Something that better reflects our core DNA, who we are, and how we work: The fund for makers by doers. A partner from day one. As of today, we’re SquareOne!

More than a decade of early-stage investing

Thirteen years ago, we started Paua Ventures as one of the first early-stage investors in Europe — long before it got trendy. We named our fund after the Maori name for an iridescent sea shell representative of our ambition to discover the real pearls in the ocean of early-stage startups. 🌊🪸🐡

“The Paua” back sometime around 2013(-ish)

Paua was born in 2010 👶🏼 — investing its own “balance sheet money” both in B2C & B2B startups while freelancing left & right: in the absence of a “management fee”, this generated some cash to pay out humble salaries (+ a ton of learnings to share with early-stage founders!). In 2012 we celebrated our first successful exit with Producteev and later beside others Flaconi and Pipedrive. As of 2014, Paua narrowed its scope and doubled down on B2B tech. By that time, we had evolved into an institutionalized fund and — as such — we were among the very first VCs in Europe investing exclusively in B2B early-stage startups such as Wandelbots, Pipedrive, or Stripe.

As of today, SquareOne has invested in more than 40 incredible B2B Tech companies over the course of the years. So, while much has changed, our core values remain: we’ve always been doers at heart — but the expertise we bring to the table and the value-add we create for founders that partner with us today is far beyond our origins and deserves a more fitting representation through a new name and brand. 🔲

From SquareOne to Number One

Today our name catches up with who we are. Because SquareOne is where it all starts. Where every customer, advisor, or talent intro has a profound impact on the early trajectory of what might become a very long ride. Where the foundations for future category leaders in vast markets are laid. The outset for a challenging and ambitious journey — from SquareOne to Number One.📈

We took a step back and reflected on our own identity & culture: everything we do revolves around value-add for founders. We consider this our handicraft ⚒️ — one, which is tough to industrialize by building a support organization in the back office. That’s why we are — and will remain — a small team of “doers”, who deliver a tailored service to our founders. This is what really sets us apart. We try to intimately understand our early-stage founders’ challenges — and to support them in overcoming them. By being an always-on sparring partner and introducing them to customers, talent, advisors — you name it.

Our Purpose & Manifesto

We then began to translate this self-portrayal into words that define our purpose:

We enable founders who are obsessed with solving complex problems in vast markets

As we went deep into the process of reflecting and capturing our brand strategy word by word we realized that we needed an emotional common story, something that would capture what we believe in and the passion we collectively feel at SquareOne. This was the moment our Manifesto came to life.

At SquareOne we believe it takes hustle and heart for a proper start.

We don’t sign deals, we initiate partnerships.
If we’re in it, we’re in it for the long run.
In fact, we’ve been in this since before early stage investing became a trend.
So we know, when we say: real success starts at square one.

We hustle,
we cold-call,
we chase,
we are Doers!

For us being hands-on means being committed,
doing everything in our power to create tangible value,
hustling 24/7 to help you bring your dreams to life,
supporting where it matters most — from day one.

If we don’t provide you with more customers,
more contacts,
more opportunities,
we consider that our failure.

Because what we truly fight for
is your success in vast markets.

From day one — we are SquareOne.

Our Look

Finally, we wanted our visual language to capture our DNA — thus giving it an active “spin”. The logo consists of two squares that are in rotation. It creates a dynamic feel while serving as a frame that symbolizes the partnership with our founders. 🤜🏼🤛🏼 Now, look at that logo — what do you see? Look close enough, and you will see that Square One ;-)

The visual language builds on the concept of the logo by creating a dynamic look & feel that is composed of expanding squares in motion — which relates to the journey and growth from a starting point toward a bigger goal. We look at our brand as an instrument to authentically highlight our DNA: To be the fund For Makers by Doers.

As you just read, our rebrand reflects how we feel about ourselves and how we want you to feel about us in the future. So we wanted to say a huge thank you to all the folks that put their trust in us — be that as investors in our funds, founders we work with, or former colleagues and interns (as well as SERIOUS.BUSINESS, the agency we collaborated with on this project). Without all of you, we would not be where we are today. We hope that you are equally excited about where we’re heading — as well as the story that brought us here.

From Day One, we’re SquareOne.

The SquareOne Squad

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