SeedInvest Start-Ups — Female Led Startups

SeedInvest emails out a portfolio of companies every so often and this week these are all companies led by women. I thought I would take the time to give each company a read, summarize what I found out, and write my take on if I would invest if I had the capital.

Scollar

How can you not invest in that happy puppy?

Overview: Scollar is playing in a 66 billion dollar market and about 24% of that market is where Scollar fits and it attempts to be the one stop solution to solve pet collars by making a internet of things pet collar. Scollar is attempting to solve lost pet tracking, perimeter barrier, pet temperature alerts, daily care, pet doors, and more. It’s a collar to rule them all. There are two product size offerings and it is modular for potential customization.

My Take: I feel like we are ready for the internet of things to help pet management easier. My friend Kim had her indoor cat get outside and he got lost. She found him stuck inside of a storm drain on a walk one night meowing for help. With Scollar she would have been able to figure out where he was and wouldn’t have spent days being worried.

The hardware is also not a big stretch so I feel confident they can make a functioning device at scale. I’m a bit concerned about the range in the first product run though and recharging of the collar and perimeter stations. That seems like the biggest draw back right now for Scollar. There is an existing product that is similar here and here. Scollar seems like it isn’t the first into the space, but it does seem like it offers the most functionality.

They are asking for 500 dollar minimum investment per investor in their SeedInvest round with a cap of 3 million with 93k already raised.

No information on product pricing as of right now. I feel like 200–300 dollars for a package would be the maximum for me that would include the collar, the perimeter, and the WiFi base or charging stations. If I had a spare 500 dollars to invest I think the max return might be 5x. It’s a great idea, but I don’t think its a Dropbox or an AirBnB.

Hear My Voice

Overview: Hear My Voice is all about providing data to politicians in that it provides a potentially more direct way for an individual to make their voice heard to the governing body either at the local, state, or federal levels. Hear My Voice’s market encompasses lobbying and campaign advertising and the total market is valued at 13 billion dollars per year. They also project that the market is likely to grow with more digital based ads for future campaigns.

As a user my voice is heard on specific topics

As a politician or governing body I have to pay money for that data and allows for a potentially more effective campaign.

Hear My Voice should help government and those who want to govern find the signal in the noise when it comes to what the country wants. For the individual citizen it provides a place to take civic action without having to tweet about #issues or write long posts on Facebook.

My Take: I like the concept. I think it could be a tool that helps revolutionize how government works and how the public communicates with their representatives or potential representatives. I am not convinced that it is much better than so many other non-profit organizations that currently exist like change.org when it comes to the people having their voices heard.

I’d prefer this platform to provide more transparency to the people. If I’m using the platform and my congressman is elected on specific issues, but then cannot act on those issues or even worse acts in opposition then I would like to know why and I don’t want to pay for it. Because our data is worth more than having our voices heard.

Hear My Voice has a 2.5 million dollar cap with a 500 dollar minimum investment for the seed round. Based on what they have and their potential revenue model I don’t think the business will succeed in it’s current form. The revenue model seems like it’s going to be capped based on what politician uses it and the data is only as good as the user base.

It’s basically a marketplace for government and it feels a bit sleazy. I don’t have a good reason for why it feels sleazy, but it does. I like the concept, but not the execution.

Crema.co

Overview: Crema.co is a coffee subscription service that supplies fresh roasted beans to discerning coffee drinkers like myself. Their revenue model is that the user pays 18–19 dollars for 12 oz of beans and Crema makes about 3 dollars in profit from this. They provide nice transparency for this shown in the figure above. The roaster makes 9 dollars. The subscription is weekly with the option to be renewed each week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, or monthly. I’m a heavy coffee drinker and I would crush a typical 12 oz bag in about 6 days. I tried using their site and it does not seem like it’s possible to order more coffee per subscription period.

A family of four that drinks coffee would go through 12 oz of coffee relatively quick. I think faster than a full week.

A high end bag of coffee off of Amazon with my “taste preference” of light and fruity costs is 18 dollars per pound and I can have it on subscription with free shipping. Although Amazon only allows for monthly subscriptions and not weekly.

Crema.co is trying to raise about 4 million with a 500 dollar minimum investment for their service.

My Take: I’m a huge coffee person. I drink coffee a lot. I don’t always care where I get my coffee, but I prefer it to be good. I don’t think Crema.co is really providing anything innovative or game changing here. Gevalia has been doing coffee subscription for as long as I can remember. I just don’t see this being a super viable company with large growth potential. They might ride that overall trend of people drinking fancy coffee up for a bit, but I think Amazon is already a big competitor there not to mention a local coffee shop that sells local roasted beans.

I would not use this service. I would not invest my money into this business.

Kindara

Overview: Kindara is a fertility app, social network, and thermometer and it has three potential revenue streams. While this is not a product I would personally use I can immediately see how it could help revolutionize how women manage fertility based on providing extensive data and charting that data. With the added in bonus of the thermometer that automatically uploads to the phone the ease in reporting the data is even better. The design looks Apple worthy and it seems like it has the best of both hardware and software while it’s competitors have only one or the other.

Kindara is a bit more mature than the previous companies and they are trying to raise a series A with a 8 million dollar capitalization. They have previously raised 2 rounds at about 5 million for a pre-seed round and 1 million for a seed round. Minimum investment is 1000 dollars.

My Take: While I have no need for this service and device I can see how it would be very useful for a couple or a mother trying to start a family or perhaps understand how to ensure that their family is started at the right time.

Kindara operates on freemium model for their app, but the Wink makes them money, and there is a both a subscription offering as well as product partnerships as potential revenue streams.

If they can grow their community and enter into Europe and Asia I think this could be big. Half the world’s population are women. If I had a 1000 dollars to place a risky bet I would place it here.

I don’t have any money to invest in start-up companies right now because I’m trying to get hardwood floors installed in my house.

It was fun reading about these companies and writing about them though.

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