📅 March 2021 DWDG Digest #16
Happy Easter Sunday folks! Hope you had a Good Friday and a prank filled-April Fool’s 😀 After a bit of experimentation, monthly digests seem to work the best-they are the perfect balance of relevant, useful, and timely news — hope you like it!
Content-wise you can expect all of the usuals: DWDG News, Fundings, and open Job Reqs. As always, reach out if there’s anything you would like to see more of (or less of). Always appreciate the feedback!
- Check out our latest Podcast post with Leaf Global CEO, Nat Robinson, where he talks about financial inclusion for refugees in Africa and around the world!
- In the NY Times DealBook digest titled “When Doing Well Means Doing Good”, they reported on how the SEC is making ESG a priority for companies regulated by them
- Entrepreneur Magazine also had a recent OpEd on the concept of Social Enterprises and the top 3 reasons why they make good business sense.
- Harvard Business School hosted their annual Social Enterprise Conference (SECON) 2021 completely virtually on March 27–28th. [Website]
BlocPower, a nearly seven-year-old, Brooklyn, N.Y. -based startup connects online investors to solar and energy efficiency project micro-finance opportunities, then hires local unemployed workers to install all BlocPower retrofits, has raised $8 million funding and $55 million more in debt financing. The capital is from American Family Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact, AccelR8, The Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group, Kapor Capital, Elemental Excelerator, CityRock Venture Partners, The Schmidt Family Foundation and Salesforce Ventures. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: BlocPower doing good in multiple ways — first it encourages the use of alternative greener sources of energy via funding of energy efficient projects and second uses the funds to ensure jobs for local unemployed workers
Anuvia, a nearly 16-year-old, Winter Garden, Fla.-based developer of crop fertilizer alternatives, has raised $103 million in funding co-led by earlier investors TPG ART and Pontifax Global, with additional participation from Generate Capital and Piva Capital. [Crunchbase News Report]
- Doing Good: Anuvia’s plant-based crop fertilizers serve as sustainable alternatives to unsustainable fertilizers widely used today.
Wisetack, a three-year-old, San Francisco-based startup that provides buy-now-pay-later services to in-person business transactions, is disclosing for the first time that raised $19 million across two rounds in 2019, a seed investment and a Series A, both of them led by Greylock (with added participation from Bain Capital Ventures). [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Wisetack enables consumers unable to purchase large ticket items in person immediately to buy what they need in the physical world.
Bitwise Industries, a nearly eight-year-old, Fresno, Ca.-based company seeking to bring more underserved communities into tech, has raised $50 million in Series B funding. Kapor Capital led the round; other investors include JPMorgan Chase, Motley Fool Ventures, and ProMedica. [Fast Company Report]
- Doing Good: Bitwise Industries has created an apprenticeship program to enable underserved communities, traditionally left our of technology due to financial barriers, to earn while they learn and placing them in lucrative tech positions.
Klarna, the 15-year-old, Stockholm, Sweden-based buy-now-pay-later payment platform, is raising between $800 million and $1 billion in new funding at a $31 billion valuation, says Bloomberg; that’s roughly triple where the company was valued after its most recent round in September, notes the outlet. [ Yahoo News Report]
- Doing Good: Klarna, like Wisetack, enables those without the means to purchase the large ticket items they need to purchase them in a buy-now-pay-later scheme.
Patch, a year-old, San Francisco-based company whose API can be leveraged by businesses to programmatically calculate their carbon emissions and make any transaction climate positive, has raised $4.5 million in funding led by Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from earlier backers VersionOne Ventures, MapleVC and Pale Blue Dot Ventures. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Patch’s API makes it easier for businesses to balance their carbon emissions thus incentivizing them the business to become climate positive.
Supplant, a four-year-old, Cambridge, U.K.-based company that’s making sugars from the waste materials of plants other than sugarcane (it was formerly known as Cambridge Glycoscience), has raised $15 million in Series A funding in a round that brings its total funding to $24 million. Felicis Ventures led the financing, joined by Coatue, EQT, Khosla Ventures, and Y Combinator. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Supplant’s ability to make sugar from other type of plants makes sugar processing more environmentally friendly thus reducing overall emissions.
First Boulevard, an eight-month-old, Kansas City, Ms.-based digital bank targeting the Black community, has just raised $5 million in seed funding from Barclays, Anthemis, and a group of angel investors, including actress Gabrielle Union, John Buttrick of Union Square Ventures, and AutoZone CFO Jamere Jackson. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: First Boulevard’s digital-first bank for the Black community is focused on providing the underserved Black community a digital-native bank built to serve their needs and address the current lack of a bank to address the $1.4T contribution of Black Americans to the economy.
Apna, a one-year-old, Bangalore, India-based jobs platform that aims to match low-skilled workers with jobs as well as to help them upskill themselves, has raised $12.5 million in Series B funding led by Sequoia Capital India and Greenoaks Capital, with participation from Lightspeed Capital India and Rocketship VC. The company has now raised $20.5 million altogether. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Apna’s platform empowers low-skilled workers by matching them with jobs as well as providing opportunities for upskilling to enable growth for them and their families.
Deferit, a three-year-old, Sydney, Australia-based buy-now-pay-later platform that invites customers to split their utility, telco, car registration or childcare bills into four installment repayments, has raised $11.6 million (USD) in fresh funding led by Carthona Capital, with participation from Alceon. [Financial Review Report]
- Doing Good: Deferit is another buy-now-pay-later platform focused on utilities or the key essentials (utilities, car, childcare, etc) addressing a huge need by underserved communities who struggle to make ends meet.
Elenas, a nearly three-year-old, Bogota, Colombia-based startup that says it’s helping tens of thousands of women make money by selling products online, has raised $6 million in Series A funding, including from Leo Capital, FJ Labs, Alpha4 Ventures and Meesho. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Elenas empowers women in Columbia to create their own sources of income via online stores opening up previously unavailable opportunities.
Jungle Scout, a nearly six-year-old, Austin, Tex.-based company whose tech helps founders and brands manage their Amazon businesses, has raised $110 million in funding. Summit Partners and Jungle Scout founder Greg Mercer led the round. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Jungle Scout enables small businesses to maintain their own businesses without consolidation from big players empowering them to continue to grow.
Planted, a two-year-old, Switzerland-based startup that has developed a vegetarian chicken alternative using pea protein and pea fiber extruded to recreate the fibrous structure of chicken, has raised $18 million in Series A funding co-led by Vorwerk Ventures and Blue Horizon Ventures. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Planted, like other alternative meat companies, replaces less sustainable methods of chicken raising and processing with a more sustainable pea alternative.
Shelf Engine, a six-year-old, Seattle-based inventory management platform for grocers so they can better plan the perishables they need, has raised $41 million in Series B funding. General Catalyst led the round, joined by GGV Capital, Foundation Capital, 1984 Ventures, Correlation Ventures, Founders’ Co-op, Soma Capital, Firebolt Ventures and Initialized Capital. [ The Spoon Report]
- Doing Good: Shelf Engine’s analytics empowers grocers to reduce food waste and incentivizes less waste and increased utilization of their stockpiles. [We chatted with the CEO last summer, check it out here]
Noon Energy, a three-year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based developer of ultra-low-cost battery technology for long-duration energy storage, has raised $3 million in seed funding led by Prime Impact Fund, with participation from Collaborative Fund, At One Ventures and Xplorer Capital. [Renewable Energy Magazine Report]
- Doing Good: Noon Energy’s long-duration technology enables transitions to renewable energy through stabilization of their power generation
Plan A, a 3.5-year-old, Berlin, Germany-based platform for corporate carbon footprint tracking and reporting, has raised $3 million in funding led by Demeter, with participation from Coparion and SoftBank. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Plan A provides a service to ensure businesses are more transparent about their carbon footprint and incentivizes lower carbon emissions.
Meatable, a three-year-old, Delft, South Holland-based cultured meat startup that says it can grow meat from a single cell quickly, has raised $47 million in Series A funding from Section 32, DSM Venturing; earlier backers BlueYard Capital, Agronomics, and Humboldt; and numerous individual investors. Altogether, the company has raised $60 million so far. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Meatable is growing cell-based meat alternatives which replace less sustainable forms of processing meat and raising animals and thus reduces carbon emissions.
Bankly, a 3.5-year-old, Lagos, Nigeria-based fintech for the unbanked, has raised $2 million in seed funding from Vault and Flutterwave. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Bankly’s product enables previously unbanked Nigerians to access the benefits of saving and gaining interest by working both offline (via cash) as well as online via the app.
Flutterwave, a five-year-old, San Francisco-based developer of payments infrastructure for banks and businesses across Africa, founded by a team of African ex-bankers, engineers and entrepreneurs, has raised $170 million in Series C funding at a post-money valuation of more than $1 billion. Avenir Growth Capital and Tiger Global Management co-led the round, joined by DST Global, Early Capital Berrywood, Green Visor Capital, Greycroft Capital, PayPal, Salesforce Ventures, Worldpay from FIS, and 9Yards Capital. The company has now raised $225 million altogether. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Flutterwave is providing a payments network that is continually expanding the reach of online services to a number of African countries previously unavailable due to confusing regulations and a diverse set of currencies.
SeekOut, a five-year-old, Bellevue, Wa.-based hiring platform that was founded by former Microsoft engineers to help talent acquisition teams recruit “hard-to-find and diverse talent,” has raised $65 million in Series B funding led by Tiger Global Management at a post-money valuation of around $500 million. Earlier backers Madrona Venture Group and Mayfield also participated in the financing, which brings SeekOut’s total funding to $73 million. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: SeekOut initially aimed to improve filling hiring reqs using AI, but has now proven that blind AI-driven profile matching improves diversity and inclusion of underrepresented groups.
Circulo, a months-old, Columbus, Oh.-based startup that says it’s building the “Medicaid insurance company of the future” and is very notably headed up by Sean Lane (he’s also running the “ unicorn” software company Olive), has raised $50 million in first-round funding from Olive investors Drive Capital, General Catalyst, Oak HC/FT, and SVB Capital. [ Press Release]
- Doing Good: Circulo is working to build a better experience for the most vulnerable insured population in the US — Medicaid recipients — by using a more modern tech infrastructure and user experience to improve patient outcomes.
Unite Us, an eight-year-old, New York-based company that creates coordinated health care networks, has raised $150 million in funding led by Iconiq Growth. Other investors in the round include Emerson Collective, Optum Ventures, Transformation Capital Partners, Define Ventures, Salesforce Ventures and Town Hall Ventures. [ Crunchbase News Report]
- Doing Good: Unite Us focuses on Social Determinants of Health and coordination between various stakeholders in the care journey to improve patient outcomes for the most vulnerable and at-risk patients.
Glooko, a 10-year-old, Mountain View, Ca.-based telehealth company that makes remote patient monitoring and chronic care management tools for diabetes, has raised $30 million in Series D funding. Health Catalyst Capital led the round, joined by earlier investors Canaan Partners, Georgian Partners, Novo Nordisk, Insulet and Mayo Clinic. [ FierceBiotech Report]
- Doing Good: Glooko builds a platform to improve health outcomes for the millions of Americans living with diabetes and provides their platform for free to patients to target the most vulnerable.
Leap, a two-year-old startup, San Francisco- and Bangalore, India-based startup that grants loans to students at what it says are fair interest rates based on alternative data that the company generates, has raised $17 million in Series B funding. Jungle Ventures led the round, joined by Sequoia Capital India and Owl Ventures. The company has now raised $22.5 million altogether. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Leap Finance enables Indians needing to access a loan for foreign study abroad to leverage their credit history in India to get fair loan terms opening up access to previously unavailable methods to study abroad.
Republic, a five-year-old, New York-based broker-dealer that funnels capital to startups from non-accredited investors, has raised $36 million in Series A funding led by Galaxy Interactive, with participation by Tribe Capital, Motley Fool Ventures, and Broadhaven Ventures. [Crowdfund Insider Report]
- Doing Good: Republic enables non-accredited investors to diversify their income with as little as a few dollars into the private market of startups opening up access to nearly the entire population of potential investors and contributing toward reducing wealth inequality.
Harmonize Health, a two-year-old, San Francisco-based remote monitoring and care platform that helps leading medical organizations better serve high-risk patients, has raised $10 million in Series A funding led by Launchpad Digital Health, with participation from Stanford University, Gaingels and existing investors Trinity Ventures and Liquid 2 Ventures.
- Doing Good: Harmonize is aiming to help the most at-risk patients within existing patient pools of leading medical organizations improving outcomes for those patients via their RPM and care platform.
WorkChew, a two-year-old, Washington, D.C.-based startup looking to connect remote workers with restaurants and hotels that need to make use of their space, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding. Harlem Capital led the round, joined by Wilshire Lane, Invictus Advisory Group, Relish Works and Techstars Ventures. Kabbage co-founder Kathryn Petralia and Etsy co-founder Chris Maguire were among the angel investors who also participated in the round. [ Crunchbase News Report]
- Doing Good: WorkChew is helping SMBs struggling from COVID and a volatile revenue stream tap into a new wave of freelancers willing to pay to work out of their spaces thus stabilizing and diversifying SMB’s income sources.
Riva Health, a three-month-old, Burlingame, Ca.-based mobile cardiology app startup cofounded by Dag Kittlaus, former co-founder of both Siri and Viv, and Tuhin Sinha, cofounder of one of the largest cardiovascular research studies in the world (Health eHeart), has launched with $15 million in funding led Menlo Ventures, with participation from UCHealth and University of Colorado Innovation Fund, among others.
- Doing Good: Riva Health combines novel tech with health expertise to reduce drastically the cost of monitoring and intervening to help at-risk cardiac patients by doing it purely via smartphone. This expands access to these technologies to those that need it most helping bridge the global healthcare divide.
Eat Just, the nine-year-old, San Francisco-based purveyor of eggless eggs and mayonnaise that was formerly called Hampton Creek, has raised $200 million in new funding led by the Qatar Investment Authority, the sovereign wealth fund of the state of Qatar, with additional participation from Charlesbank Capital Partners and Vulcan Capital. The company, which has had more public ups and downs than most, has now raised $650 million altogether. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Eat Just is an alternative protein company much like other sustainability companies that aim to replace traditional unsustainable practices reducing carbon emissions.
Digital House, a five-year-old, Buenos Aires-based edtech focused on developing tech talent through immersive remote courses, has raised more than $50 million in new funding from two large tech companies: Latin American e-commerce giant Mercado Libre and San Francisco-based software developer Globant. Riverwood Capital and earlier backer Kaszek also participated in the financing. The startup has now raised $80 million altogether. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Digital House builds tech talent in LatAm through focused trainings for tech sector jobs and guaranteed employment after graduation bridging the talent divide, expanding access to high-paying jobs, and thus bridging wealth inequality.
Rupifi, a 15-month-old, Bangalore, India-based buy-now-pay-later platform for small and medium-size businesses, has raised $4.1 million in seed funding led by Quona Capital.
- Doing Good: Rupifi enables SMBs to better stabilize their cash flows with their product opening up opportunities previously unaccessible to many struggling SMBs.
DotPe, a year-old Gurgaon, India-based startup that helps brick and mortar stores sell to customers online and collect payments digitally, has raised $27.5 million in Series A funding at a post-money valuation of $90 million. PayU led the round, joined by Google and earlier investor Info Edge Ventures. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: DotPe is enabling brick and mortar stores to capitalize on the digital revolution by opening up access to new markets helping bridge the tech and wealth divide.
Cityblock Health, a four-year-old, Brooklyn, N.Y.-based startup that pairs community outreach, local clinics and virtual care with software that helps surface medical and social care issues before they spiral out of control, has raised $192 million in extended Series C funding led by Tiger Global Management. Earlier backers also joined the round, including Kinnevik AB, Maverick Ventures, General Catalyst, Wellington Management, Thrive Capital, Redpoint Ventures, Echo Health Ventures, 8VC and Goldman Sachs Asset Management. The company — which was incubated by Google-backed Sidewalk Labs — originally announced $160 million in Series C funding in December at a valuation of more than $1 billion. [ Forbes Report]
- Doing Good: Cityblock Health’s core product serves the most in-need Medicaid patients in traditionally underserved communities and continues to grow their presence across multiple cities helping bridge the healthcare divide.
LiveKindly Collective, a two-year-old, New York-based family of plant-based food brands that was founded by some heavy hitters from the food industry, has garnered $103 million in equity funding from TPG to close its latest round with $335 million. [ TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: LiveKindly Collective is another alternative meat company diverting unsustainable practices to more sustainable ones thus reducing carbon emissions.
Rightway, a three-year-old, New York-based healthcare navigation company that says it aims to help members find quality care at fair prices, has raised $100 million in Series C funding led by Khosla Ventures in a round that values the company at $1.1 billion. Thrive Capital and Tiger Global Management also joined the round, among others. [Forbes Report]
- Doing Good: Rightway’s product provides more transparency to patients opening up access to patients by making healthcare more affordable and thus financially accessible.
Datapeople, a five-year-old, New York-based startup that sells software designed to make recruiting more equitable, said today that it has raised $8 million across two funding events, including a $5 million round in mid-2020. Its backers include Uncork Capital, NextView Ventures, and First Round Capital. [TechCrunch Report]
- Doing Good: Datapeople’s core value is to make recruiting more equitable across socioeconomic lines directly helping to address under-representation of marginalized groups in the recruiting process.
Fairmarkit [Series B] — HQ: Boston, MA, USA
- Mission: “Fairmarkit enables organizations to purchase the goods and services they need. Using data and automation, we promote market competition to drive impactful results.”
- Jobs: https://jobs.lever.co/fairmarkit
Olist [Series D] — HQ: Curitiba, Parana, Brazil
Allonia [Series A] — HQ: Boston, MA, USA
Hope you like the new monthly cadence! Consider it your monthly summary of all things Doing Well by Doing Good so you never miss a beat. Subscribe or share it with anyone you think would benefit from learning about the companies that are profitable with a purpose.
Enjoy the rest of your Easter weekend (and this cute bunny)!
Originally published at https://dwdg.substack.com.