Startup

This Week’s Top Seed Companies to Watch — Carewell, Fritz.ai, Yaguara, Kaizo, Helm.ai

A weekly newsletter highlighting the top seed companies that have announced or raised a seed round within the past week.

There are over 1,000 companies that raise seed or angel financing each quarter in the United States. This weekly post provides a glimpse into how we think about tracking new investment opportunities.

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Happy Monday!

A few general venture capital highlights from last week:

Impossible Food raises its $500M Series F led by Mirae Asset Global Investments to become the premier plant-based meat producer. The company has now raised $1.2B to date with the first round being raised in June 2013.

App-based marketplace Offerup raises $120M led by OLX Group and acquires its closest competitor, LetGo. The company has now raised $381M to date with its Seed round being led by Alliance of Angels and Quixotic Ventures.

Business credit card company Brex acquires three strategic technology companies Neji, Compose Labs and Landria, to help growing businesses scale. Brex has raised $382M in venture funding to date with its Seed round being lead by Human Capital out of Y-Combinator.

Here are my top seed investments from the last week:

Carewell

EVA Growth Index:
No external sources indicating growth

Product:
Home health products to help family caregivers cater to their loved ones

Investors:
e.venturesNextView Ventures, Pinscher Capital, Telesoft Capital

Total Raised:
$5M

Business Model:
No inventory e-commerce with an in-house panel of customer service experts

Comparables:
Amazon, Walgreens

X-Factors:
1. Family caregivers do not fully understand which products are best for their family members. Carewell’s customer support focused model increases the likelihood that the correct items are ordered

2. Traditional pharmacies and retailers do not have a sufficient amount of SKU's required to fully cater to the needs of home caregivers

Thoughts:
Over $85B a year is spent in this category in the U.S. alone. With more health care moving in the home, this is a large category that has been left underserved. We invested, so we are as positive as one can be.

Fritz

EVA Growth Index:

Product:
Machine learning platform for iOS and Android developers, with ready to use features like object detection, image labeling, style transfer, image segmentation and pose estimation

Investors:
Foundry GroupEniac Ventures, Inner Loop Capital, Uncork Capital, Hack VC, NextGen Venture Partner

Total Raised:
$7M

Business Model:
SaaS subscription

Comparables:
No one significant

X-Factors:
1. Democratizing access to AI in multi-client app development

2. Incredible EVA Growth

Thoughts:
Individual application developers have a challenging time building AI features apps across both iOS and Android. The modern developer is looking to do as much processing at the edge, which means on the device itself. The more that can be done locally, the faster the product can perform and the less bandwidth and remote compute required.

Yaguara

EVA Growth Index:
No external sources indicating growth

Product:
Key Performance Indicator management software for e-commerce businesses

Investors:
Foundation Capital, Gradient Ventures, Intercept Ventures, Rainfall Ventures

Total Raised:
$8.1M

Business Model:
SaaS subscription with annual contracts

Comparables:
Tonkean.com

X-Factors:
1. Central platform that helps an organization keep track of their goals and gives direction

2. Deep integrations where all of the disparate data currently live

Thoughts:
Yaguara is to Shopify, what ChartMogul is to Stripe: a specialized tool for managing and reviewing large amounts of siloed data. The CEO and Founder built a marketing and design and agency, so he knows a thing or two about monitoring performance.

Kaizo

EVA Growth Index:
No external sources indicating growth

Product:
Software which gamifies the customer support work-flow

Investors:
Gradient Ventures, Partech

Total Raised:
$3M

Business Model:
SaaS subscription starting at $19 per agent per month

Comparables:
ZenDesk, ServiceNow

X-Factors:
1. Gives customer support agents real-time feedback and motivation to become better at their job

2. Experienced SaaS Entrepreneurs

Thoughts:
This is the second week in a row where we have highlighted a business that aims to increase the productivity of customer support agents. Last week was Assembled. This brings a unique UI-layer that stands out in the enterprise software world.

Helm AI

EVA Growth Index:
No external sources indicating growth

Product:
AI software platform for autonomous driving vehicles. Their software enables computers to evaluate sensor data better than a human ever could

Investors:
Binnacle Partners, Kevin Durant, SV Angel, Amplo, Fontinalis Partners, A.Capital Ventures, Sound Ventures

Total Raised:
$13M (the new AI seed!)

Business Model:
TBD

Comparables:
Apollo, Nvidia Drive

X-Factors:
1. Massive emerging market

2. An approach to gaining access to the autonomous driving market without investing in a hardware vendor

Thoughts:
More questions than thoughts: Does the software update locally? What type of computing power and bandwidth are required? How far along are they in training their algorithms and what datasets? The market opportunity is too big to ignore.

Have you recently raised a Seed round? Do you think your start-up could be of interest to e.ventures? Provide us your information here to be potentially included next week.

See last weeks Seeds to Track >> here

What is the EVA Growth Index?
The EVA Growth index is a composite of third-party data sources around a company’s website traffic. The vertical green lines in the charts represent a point in time where the company raised outside capital
.