Exciting days for Invia Robotics.

I am super excited to partner with @DanGwak and P72 Ventures team on the @InviaRobotics $20M Series B investment. I believe what @liorelazary and his entire team are building is some of the most exciting technology coming out of #LongLA.

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We originally invested in Invia Robotics a year ago (before there were any real customers) and already their low-cost goods-to-person robotics solution is seamlessly integrating directly with human workers to automate fulfillment systems in the commerce warehouses. Live. In the wild.

The robots pick and deliver totes and trays directly to pickers, eliminating unnecessary, wasteful travel time in the warehouse aisles. The system merges with existing warehouse management software, offering a more complete solution with predictable costs and scalability. …

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It is no secret that Venture Capitalists like myself love startups operating in categories ripe for disruption — but what does that really look like? Well, it is a category whose standard technology was built on outdated principles. Whose business model is too entrenched by incumbents to properly modernize. Who is deeply unpopular or broken for its end-users. And where a clear technological or social change is clear and inevitable.

In what now feels like a previous life, I spent six-years of my career in live event ticketing (at eBay, StubHub and LiveNation), so I know firsthand that the category is one of the most outdated, unpopular, entrenched, and broken industries around. …

That was literally my first question when I sat down at the Upfront Summit a few weeks ago to interview Colin Fan and Lydia Jett from Softbank’s Vision Fund. Along with — how does a team think about deploying $100B of capital? What post-investment value comes alongside the capital? And have they ever lost a deal?

Colin and Lydia answered all this (mostly) and more, giving the audience insight into Softbank and Masa Son’s 30-to-300 year vision for their portfolio companies — companies they expect to be historically transformational. You will also hear their perspective on why “they don’t have enough money to invest,” why they hope to catalyze other investors into larger, longer-term investments, and how Masa is here to “suspend the real world.”

I truly enjoyed this discussion and encourage you all to watch the full interview, below. Thanks to Colin Fan and Lydia Jett for their participation.


Greg Bettinelli

Los Angeles via Petaluma. Operator turned investor @UpfrontVC. Advisor @FreemanSpogli. Co-founder @MuckerLab. Former CMO @HauteLook (@Nordstrom), @eBay. #LongLA

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