The Story Behind Artsly

Muhammad Huzaifa and Muhammad Jehanzaib are already one of Pakistan most extraordinary entrepreneurs and they have just launched their third company Artsly. They talk about Artsly here, but I wanted to find out more about their past and how they came to raise capital from Kima Ventures.

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The Investment

In their teens they started HuJe labs which was their first foray into the world of web and mobile development. But being in a service business wasn’t their calling, they are entrepreneurs to their core, so in 2011 they started talking to Jeremie Berrebi of Kima Ventures.

At the time they didn’t have a product let alone an idea of what they wanted to build, but stayed in touch with Jeremie through email. Once they knew the product they wanted to build, iKnowl, Jeremie and his partner Xavier Niel agreed to invest in them provided they found a local investor.

Jeremie wanted a local investor involved to lower their risk given it was their first investment in Pakistan. Due to the brothers background finding an investor was tough as there were no real angel investors around at that time. As with all Pakistani entrepreneurs at this stage, finding an investor means finding any avenue, whether it be friends, colleagues or teacher even. In the end, due to their professionalism and work ethic at HuJe Labs, they managed to convince one of their past clients to become a partner in the firm.

Having found the investor, Jeremie decided to invest $175k in the brothers. At the end of it all, the brothers say they exchanged over 1200 emails with Kima

The Relationship with Kima

Their relationship with Kima and Jeremie Berrebi in particular has been more of a partnership. Jeremie advises the brothers wherever he can but leave all decisions up to them including any pivots they feel is necessary.

If you want to learn more about iKnowl and Artsly, Huzaifa writes about his experiences here.

Artsly is a video based social learning platform providing short lessons in makeup, music, food, painting and crafts from different instructors. Artsly within beta has already received over 1400 sign ups from instructors who are in the process of creating and uploading content.

Artsly is now available on the App Store

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