We look at hundreds of companies as potential investments each month. It’s a great perch to see what problems entrepreneurs are solving, what new industries are popping up, and where consumer trends are heading.
Here are a few favorites we’ve seen lately.
Square Roots. We led this round. More people than ever are living in cities and demanding healthier, fresh, food. But the current infrastructure can’t keep up with future growth. Square Roots is an urban farm accelerator, setting up produce-growing farms in shipping containers and teaching groups of entrepreneurs how to run their own urban farm.
Luminopia. We invested in Luminopia, leveraging our partnership with Sesame Workshop. Treatment for lazy eye in kids hasn’t changed in hundreds of years – an eye patch, worn constantly, often for years, is reasonably effective but prohibitively embarrassing for kids. Luminopia created virtual reality headset treatment that kids love using and is clinically effective at treating lazy eye.
Flip.Lease. We invested in Flip. Renting has gained popularity since the housing bust. But a lease can still lock you into a term that hampers mobility, which is key in today’s geographically distributed job market. Flip is a marketplace for flexible housing, connecting potential renters with people who want to sublet or get out of their lease.
Lendit. We invested in Lendit. Korea – where Collaborative Fund has significant investing relationships – has a very different lending market than the United States. Peer-to-peer lending is growing rapidly, and Lendit is the current market leader in virtually every statistic.
Amp Robotics. While we didn’t invest in this business, we love what they are doing. The company uses imaging and robotics to identify and sort heaps of recycled material exponentially faster than humans can. The result is not only a more effective recycling process, but lower costs for municipal waste systems.
MindMeet. We didn’t invest, but really love what this team is building. Everyone has knowledge to share with others, and everyone wants to meet someone with knowledge they can gain from. MindMeet lets you sell your time, in person or over video, to those who want to pick your brain. Proceeds go to a charity of your choice. Bridging the gaps that prevent the full sharing of the world’s knowledge is an area we’re bullish on.
For more on how Collaborative Fund invests, check out our investment manifesto.