👾 The Bulletin #17: Hot New Deals, Web3 World, and Climate Tech Start-ups
Welcome back, lovely readers! We hope you had a fun and relaxing spring break. 💐 Now that we’re back on the grind, let’s dive right into what VWV is reading, listening to, and thinking about! This week’s newsletter is all about hot new deals in VC investing, the Web3 world (NEW SERIES: W3W), and start-ups involved in climate tech.
Events that We’re Attending 😈
🤩 This weekend is the Startup x WE @ Brown Entrepreneurship Conference!
Time & Place: April 9 & 10 / 11:30 am — 6:30 pm ET / @ Sayles / **Register here**
One of the biggest EP events of the year has finally come! Women’s Empowerment and Startup@Brown are hosting a conference to connect students to experienced experts in entrepreneurship. This is a great way to explore different industries, with this year’s them focusing on healthcare and technology.
Speakers from companies like Quizlet, Ellevest, Monthly, Speechify, BlackRock, Multitasky, and more are coming. There will be a pitch competition (anyone is welcomed to participate!) with a price pool of $1000+ and a startup internship recruiting fair will be held. Come for raffles, food truck, free merch, and networking opportunities!
Hot New Deals 🔥
💰 Ellevest Raises $53 Million in Series B Funding
In addition to the news that Ellevest is coming to Brown, they also very recently raised $53 million in Series B funding round. The financial company built by women for women kept their mission and values in mind by working with several new women-led investors, such as Halogen Ventures and Cleo Capital. The round was co-led by BMO and Contour Venture Partners
With this capital, they plan to deepen their offerings, develop product solutions, and building a stronger community to further their mission to get money in the hands of women. Read more here.
🐝 Israeli Bee Tech Startup Beewise Raises $80 Million in Series C Funding
Beewise, a developer of robotic beehives thats automated solutions aims at saving global bee solutions, raised $80 million in Series C funding. The round was led by Insight Partners, with investors like Sana Abu Dhabi and Fortissimo Capital joining.
The company was founded in 2018 and first developed Beehome, “a solar-powered, converted container that brings together robotics, artificial intelligence, imaging, a software platform, and a mobile application to monitor and care for honeybees around the clock.”
Read more here.
Two more hot deals are listed below in our new series on Web3! 👇
W3W #1: Web3World 💎
This week, we begin a new series called W3W (pronounced double-3-double for ease on the tongue), focused on the most innovative news on NFTs, blockchains, and anything in the Web3 world.
For Week #1, we’ll touch on some recent news in the field to get you exposed to the industry. Stay tuned for Week #2, where we’ll begin diving into the very basic technical terms and definitions. In the following weeks, we’ll have one part technical and one part study into different use-cases.
🎨 Novel Commerce Inc Raises $6 million to Generate NFTs for Brands
Novel is a NY-based company “that helps retailers, brands and content creators mint and sell non-fungible tokens,” recently raising $6 million in a seed round and resulting a post-valuation of $21 million.
Through Novel’s service, retailers are able generate and sell NFTs without having to code themselves. Especially since now that brands are becoming more and more interested in Web3 (decentralized internet using cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and other technology), the opportunity for Novel is huge.
🐒 Yuga Labs Raises $450 Million in Seed Funding
Yuga Labs, the creator of Bored Ape Yacht Club, raised $450 million in seed round, valuing the company at $4 billion. The round was led by a16z’s crypto fund, with other investors like game studio Animoca Brands and LionTree joining in.
Yuga Labs, founded in 2021, has one of the biggest-ever valuation for a seed-round. They plan to use the funds to grow their team and attract the best talents.
🔮 How a VC firm that turned $700K into $4B is betting on the future of crypto gaming
General partner at VC firm Hashed Baek Kim and host Frank Chaparro explains how Hashed is shaping the future of crypto gaming. The firm was founded in 2017 by South Korean founders and engineers that pooled together $700k. 5 years later, Hashed holds $4 billion in their fund that is still 100% own by the firm (WOW). With crypto gaming as “one of the main pillars of Hashed’s investment thesis,” they have dedicated $200 million to investing in just this realm.
It’s a sweet 40 minute watch if you want to plop yourself at Joe’s while munching on a Burger but if you got a midterm to study for, take a skim through the article instead!
What We’re Reading 📚
🎤 29 Pre-Unicorn Pitch Decks
As Founders Fund principal Delian Asparouhov puts it, “In order to build conviction, we rely on founders to tell us a compelling story, almost always in the form of slides. We’ve funded companies almost entirely because of the quality of their seed decks. Poor deck? We’ll likely pass on the opportunity.”
CB Insights recently put together the early pitch decks of 29 startups before they became billion-dollar companies. If you’re looking to build your own deck or simply curious, browse through them here!
🌱 Climate Start-ups in YC Batches Are Increasing
More and more climate start-ups are being represented in the YC batches as the cohort size increases. This week, fundings were for a Paris based carbone management platform for real estate, a functional ingredients platform, and Israeli startup Beewise.
Into Tik Toks? Here’s a great TikTok mashup for more.
Newsletters that We’re Following 📧
Interested in keeping up with the hottest VC deals? Follow Strictly VC to get caught up on who is getting invested in and who is investing.
Interested in joining the NFT community and don’t know how to get started? Join MomentRanks’ newsletter to get into it.
Interested in climate tech Start-ups/VC? Subscribe to CTVC on their weekly issues.
VWV Words of the Week 🧚♀️
VWV members, alumni, and mentors are invited to give their advice, thoughts, probing questions, stories, and anything else to share with the rest of the community.
Today, we have some recommendations from analyst-in-training Jules:
“The best three ways that I’ve been able to become very comfortable assessing start-ups, which has come in clutch in VC applications/interviews have been:
- Practicing building companies and stretch your entrepreneurial muscle 💡
- Keeping up with a few select start-ups and watching how they grow or change 📈
- Learning about the activity of many industries on the broader scale 💻
I can’t stress this enough, but push yourself outside your comfort zone and deep dive into an area that you’ve been avoiding– like NFTs or telecommunications. While it may not be your main interest, it’s incredibly important to at least have a sense or basis of knowledge on the fields.”
Read more **here!**
Thanks for tuning in, see y’all next time ❤
van wickle v
Thanks to Cécile Tang, Amanda Lee, Viktor Bardi, and Olivia Tulkoff for providing content to make this newsletter possible.