By: Cyril Bertrand

Fast, smart & irresistibly successful : Skello is the perfect example of how startups make it easier for their clients (hospitality & retail managers in this case) and their investors along (XAnge + Aglaé Ventures). With this 6 million € round, Skello is well equipped to deliver on their wildest ambitions.

Venture Capital, as straightforward as it gets

We VCs sometimes give the impression that we crave massive amounts of risks. That we wake up every morning to go hunting for the next Zenly, Alan & Ledgers of the world. Last December I wrote a paper on the new “moonshots” of French VCs (i.e. tricky but exciting and high-paying deals), which outlined new good risks that investors now have the power to take to escape mounting valuations and the resulting threat of decreasing returns.

The truth however is that even more than a good risk, investors love a no-brainer. And luckily, Skello is one of those.

For Alain Ducasse and for Pizza Hut… and so many more

Quitterie, Emmanuelle, Samy & Thibault launched Skello as a workforce planning software dedicated to hotels & restaurants. As managers know, workforce planning & pay management requires a whole lot of organizational constraints and legal skills. It’s a complex, time consuming and frustrating task. Skello offered to make it easy for them and in a matter of months convinced close to 2 000 clients. The company already generates a solid monthly recurring revenue — the key indicator for SaaS.

It says a lot about a product when it is used at the same time by Alain Ducasse and by global food chains like Subway or Pizza Hut. And there’s more to it. The beauty with Skello is how its potential to go way beyond the hospitality business. Retailers like le Slip Français or Monop’ already successfully use the tool, and it’s just a beginning.

Being able to sell a software to different category of clients is a marker of absolute success for SaaS, with a potentially strong impact on valuation — and exit. Furthermore, a big portion of Skello’s clients are global and so are their needs. I can’t wait to support the team to go overseas with its clients. It won’t be easy, as we’ll have to teach the software to adapt.

Fast & Furious

As mentioned in the “new moonshots of French VCs”, one of two main “bad risks” for an investor is founders quality. Needless to say this was never an issue with Skello. Emmanuelle & Quitterie set the best possible background for success and maximized their odds through hard work and smart connections:

  • After meeting in the USA they developed a fascinating alchemy. Work with one and you will realise that the other is fully up to date. They must have some sort of magic synchronization tool running in the background.
  • Following business school Quitterie attended Le Wagon, a coding bootcamp, to beef up her tech background and start working on the project that would become Skello (+1 for Le Wagon btw)
  • From the beginning they surrounded themselves with high-profiles such as Doctolib’s co-founder Thomas Landais, who later joined the board.

In this sense Emmanuelle & Quitterie are the kind of French entrepreneurs I love the most : fast (the term sheet was wrapped in 2 weeks) and furious (with a dose of good aggressiveness).

One last point : did I mention how proud we are to support a team of entrepreneurs lead by two brilliant women? This world (and XAnge family) needs more Quitterie & Emmanuelle.