What is tugboat?

Tugboat offers investment opportunities in high potential start-up companies, providing individuals unique access to high-risk/high-return investments. Investments are made on a case-by-case basis, allowing a high degree of identification of “trickle-investors” (our customers) with their investments.

Testimonials from Startups

“tugboat enabled us to pool smaller investors and consolidate them into one official shareholder, tugboat. The result is a lean share register, which is beneficial in case of further investment rounds. VC’s like this a lot.”

Pascal Koenig, Ava AG
With tugboat we were able to invite smaller investors, friends, and families to join our startup journey whilst keeping the cap-table manageable – all based on a very straightforward and efficient process. tugboat serves an important sweet spot in Switzerland’s investor landscape.
Nicolas Blanchard, Apiax AG

“Working with tugboat was very pleasant and uncomplicated, allowing our start-up company to benefit from additional funds. Tugboat’s way of doing business is streamlined for efficient collaboration with start-ups.”

Felix Niederer, True Wealth AG

Why invest into high-tech Start-Ups with tugboat?

Makes financial sense


Makes financial sense

Trickle funding of high-tech ventures is very risky, but offers potentially very high returns. Such investments bear the greatest benefit to society in supporting innovative ideas, people, businesses and advance prosperity. Thanks to the direct case-by-case investments into specific startups, there is full transparency where your money goes.

Invest into what you believe in & identify with


Invest into what you believe in & identify with

Why invest in companies you can’t identify with, like blue chips and big corporations? There are more exciting companies that you can identify with. Investing in tugboat is like a child sponsorship – trickle-investors have a personal connection towards ‚their’ start-up and feel emotionally tied to it.

Do good


Do good

You might be doing more for society by investing in a start-up than in a charity. You support young entrepreneurs with dedication and innovative approaches to improve our life and society.

tugboat’s Working Principle


Rico Chandra

Rico Chandra

Co-founder and Strategic Counsel
MSc Physics ETH Zurich, PhD Particle Physics CERN

Stephan Habegger

Stephan Habegger

Co-founder and CEO
MA, Psychology, University of Bern

Frequently Asked Questions

Would I lose my money if tugboat were to go out of business?2021-11-30T14:45:52+01:00

No. You are the owner of the shares.

How likely is it that I will lose money?2019-05-02T09:12:04+01:00

On each single investment, the likelihood of losing money is higher than making a profit. Given that the potential loss is limited to the money you invest while the potential upside is unlimited, a diversified portfolio of trickle-investments is advisable if you are seeking to pursue an investment strategy with good odds of being profitable.

Can you guarantee good performance of my investment?2018-03-25T19:19:09+01:00

Absolutely not. While your investment may deliver high returns, it is more likely that you will lose money. Do not invest if you are dependent on the funds you invest.

How does tugboat perform due diligence?2018-03-25T19:19:45+01:00

Our business model does not permit us to perform diligence processes according to industry standards – these can easily cost CHF 40,000 and more. Instead, we mitigate our risk by following the principles set out in “What selection criteria do you apply to startups?”

What selection criteria do you apply to startups?2018-03-25T20:33:09+01:00
  • We co-invest with a lead investor we deem capable of performing an adequate due diligence.
  • We, tugboat’s principals, are excited about the startup and willing to bet our own money on it.
  • Is the business plan plausible? Could it deliver a high payoff as good high tech startups with proprietary IP can?
  • Do we judge the team to be capable of delivering?
Is tugboat somehow regulated by legal authorities?2021-11-30T14:47:41+01:00

tugboat’s investments run by our partner platform leva.pe, which is associated with a Swiss Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) as per legal requirement.

What kind of startups does tugboat invest into?2018-02-05T23:00:07+01:00

tugboat is mainly focusing on Swiss high-tech startups, most of the times ETH spinoffs. The industries involved range from med-tech, reg-tech, wearables to security manufacturing.

What is the lowest amount I can invest into a startup with tugboat?2018-02-05T22:30:30+01:00

tugboat allows you to invest into a startup starting from CHF 10’000.- up to 100’000.-

Do I have to pay some entry or management fee to participate?2021-09-30T16:21:17+01:00

There is no entry-, membership- or recurring fee but a success fee on your gains to cover the legal costs. The only up-front fee you’ll encounter is a one-off 1% of your invested amount to cover the costs charged by our digital partner platform. Apart from this, tugboat works with a success fee depending on the exit multiple (meaning the factor between purchase and sale of shares).

Do I need to have specific experience with investments?2018-02-10T22:50:38+01:00

No, you do not have to know much about start-up investments, but be aware that these are high-risk investments with potential loss of the full investment.

Who is the owner of shares if I invest through tugboat?2021-11-30T14:45:17+01:00

You are the owner of the shares. tugboat is the Deal Manager taking care of adminstrative and organizational tasks.

If you have any additional questions, please get in touch with us via info@tugboat.ch

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