Please see the original press release below.
Endeavor Catalyst Invests in Turkey’s Airties; First Catalyst Investment in MENA region
NEW YORK, July 18, 2012 — Endeavor, the world-wide leader in selecting, mentoring and accelerating high-impact entrepreneurs, announced that it has closed an investment round with AirTies, an innovative Turkish developer of wireless networking equipment with worldwide sales, as the third investment of Endeavor Catalyst.
Endeavor Catalyst is a revolutionary and high-impact initiative that uses donated capital to allow the organization to co-invest in Endeavor Entrepreneurs in a neutral, unbiased way. The main goal of this program is to use the returns of the investment both to support Endeavor’s operations and to be reinvested into Catalyst to provide funding for other Endeavor Entrepreneurs.
The investment is the first for Endeavor Catalyst in an Endeavor Entrepreneur in the MENA region and is part of a larger financing round led by international investment firm Invus which has headquarters in New York. It follows closely on investments in Argentine IT outsourcing leader Globant and Brazil’s Minha Vida health advisory website. Today, Catalyst investments total nearly $3.5 million.
The pioneering supporters of Endeavor Catalyst have each pledged $1MM to the investment vehicle, citing it as an innovative new model of philanthropy. The founding members of this Entrepreneurs’ Circle include Michael Ahearn, Chairman of True North Venture Partners; Edgar Bronfman, Jr., Former Chairman of Warner Music Group; Michael Cline, Managing Partner of Accretive LLC; Reid Hoffman, Partner of Greylock Partners and Co-Founder of LinkedIn; Arif Naqvi, Founder and Group CEO of Abraaj Capital; Pierre Omidyar, Founding Partner of Omidyar Network, Founder and Chairman of eBay.
“With this investment in AirTies, Catalyst becomes a truly global investment vehicle as we move beyond Latin America and into the Middle East, where we see significant opportunity,” says Linda Rottenberg, Co-Founder and CEO of Endeavor Global. “We are thrilled to align Endeavor more closely with AirTies’ success. AirTies’ Founder & CEO Bulent Celebi is an extraordinary Endeavor Entrepreneur and role model in the region, who also serves as an Endeavor Turkey board member and mentor to other entrepreneurs.”
Endeavor is leading the global high-impact movement to catalyze long-term economic growth around the world. With operations in 15 countries throughout Latin America, Africa, Southeast Asia and the Middle East, Endeavor has screened more than 30,000 entrepreneurs and selected 708 individuals leading over 443 high-impact companies. These Entrepreneurs have created over 180,000 jobs, generated over $5 billion in revenues in 2011 and inspire future generations to innovate and take risks.
“Endeavor supported AirTies in its early stages, by helping me secure financing in Turkey and through providing strategic introductions to world-class leaders,” says Bulent Celebi. “Catalyst further aligns AirTies with an organization I care about. Through Catalyst and my role on the Endeavor Turkey board, I am proud to give back to Endeavor and support the next generation of entrepreneurs.”
After a 20-year career in Silicon Valley, Celebi co-founded AirTies in 2004 to provide wireless solutions for the residential and small business market in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region. Developing, producing and marketing network and wireless routers, set top boxes and accessories, AirTies is the leading company to wirelessly distribute multiple HD video streams to multiple TVs with its innovative MESH networking technology.
Hailed by New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman as “the best anti-poverty program of all,” Endeavor is leading the global movement to catalyze long-term economic growth by selecting, mentoring, and accelerating the best high-impact entrepreneurs around the world. To date, Endeavor has screened more than 30,000 entrepreneurs and selected 708 individuals leading 443 high-impact companies, who then inspire future generations to innovate and take risks. Headquartered in New York City, Endeavor currently operates in 15 countries throughout Latin America, Africa, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. As the high-impact movement expands globally, Endeavor will continue to prove that anyone with a big idea can succeed, from Silicon Valley to Latin America, the Middle East, and beyond.
AirTies Wireless Networks, the innovative wireless home networking & Set-Top-developer to the digital TV industry. AirTies designs and develops its own hardware and the embedded firmware. Technology innovations include award winning wireless video distribution to multiple TV’s, wireless coverage range extension, and network setup at a touch of a button. Through its comprehensive product range, including 4 fundamental services (high speed internet access/xDSL, Wireless LANs, internet based telephony/VoIP, and internet based television/IPTV/OTT & DVB C, S & T STB’s).
AirTies was founded in February 2004 by a senior management and technical team from the Silicon Valley, USA, with the strategic intent to become the market leader in wireless distribution within the connected home. AirTies has thus far more than 8 million installed base world-wide. More information is available on their website at www.airties.com.
Since 1985, Invus has been an equity investor in companies who seek to transform their industries. Invus partners with owner-managers of private and public companies to help them achieve extraordinary business performance. Over its 20+ year history, Invus has achieved both cash on cash multiples and annual internal rates of return that are at the very top of the private equity industry. Today Invus manages assets over $4 billion through an evergreen fund structure and has offices in New York, London, Paris and Hong Kong. Invus has invested in companies across a wide range of industries including consumer products and services, food, specialty retail, software, biotech, medical devices and products and services to professionals. To learn more about Invus, please visit www.invus.com.