Atlanta’s Southern Hospitality Is Winning Venture Investors

Atlanta’s Southern Hospitality Is Winning Venture Investors

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of a TechCrunch article by Christine Magee.

Atlanta is home to the world’s largest drive-in, some of rap music’s greatest minds, and 71 streets named Peachtree. It’s also the center of a thriving startup scene, as we saw at last night’s Meetup + Pitch-Off.

Over the past five years, venture investors have committed $1.2 billion in venture capital to Atlanta-based startups, according to CrunchBase data. Annual deal count grew by 25% in 2014, and capital committed more than tripled the $110M recorded in 2010.

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Underwear Startups Have Investors Hot And Bothered

Underwear Startups Have Investors Hot And Bothered

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of a TechCrunch article by Christine Magee.

After taking the runway at New York Fashion Week, fashion tech is making a play for the bedroom. A new collection of underthings and intimates startups are stripping down to basics — and venture investors are seeing 50 shades of green.

It’s not a lot of money yet, but the surge in seed funding over the past two years indicates growing investor interest in tech-enabled basics brands. From a16z to First Round, over 100 venture firms and angel investors closed deals for underwear startups since 2012, according to CrunchBase data.

“Underwear alone in the U.S. is a $15 billion plus market per year in terms of revenue,” says Bryan Lalezarian, CEO of basics brand MeUndies.

MeUndies has raised over $1 million in venture cash to deliver trendy underwear to hundreds of thousands of customers worldwide — and Lalezarian says they’re currently raising more. A handful of bold marketing moves, including a sponsorship for crotch-grabbing football star Marshawn Lynch and a collection of photo ads deemed too sexual for Facebook, have generated a lot of recent attention for the three-year-old startup.

“If you think about the tools that we have today with social media — Instagram, Snapchat, obviously Facebook and Twitter — there are a lot of unique ways we can connect directly to customers to deliver our message, tell our story, and sell our brand, and those didn’t exist 20 years ago when companies like Gap and Victoria’s Secret got started,” says Lalezarian.

According to CrunchBase data, underthings startups have closed 22 venture rounds since 2013 — the majority of which are very early-stage as investors test the waters.

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Startup Calendar for February 24th

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Featured events this week:

Other events:

Read the weekly newsletter for more.

As well as ten accelerator programs:

Read the weekly newsletter for more.

To take part in this program as an organization that hosts startup events, visit the Startup Calendar page for guidelines and send us an email at events@crunchbase.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

The CrunchBase Venture Program Welcomes New Accelerators

The CrunchBase Venture Program Welcomes New Accelerators

The CrunchBase Venture Program had a recent spate of accelerators join in the last month. CrunchBase now tracks around 580 accelerators, and the largest accelerator hubs are in the US, UK and then Spain. Peak years for launching an accelerator were 2011 through 2013. 2014 saw a drop of close to 40%.

Here are the recent additions ordered by # of investments. Welcome to the CrunchBase family.

US accelerators 
Plug and Play – Sunnyvale ,California
The Brandery – Cincinnati, Ohio
i/o Ventures – San Francisco, CA
NMotion
– Lincoln, Nebraska
Coolhouse Labs – Harbor Springs, Michigan
Start Co. – Memphis, Tennessee
Elmspring Accelerator  – Chicago, Illinois
Tampa Bay WaVE – Tampa, Florida
MergeLane – Boulder, Colorado
Farallon Research LLC  – San Jose, California
Think Beyond Plastic - Menlo Park, California

Accelerators outside of the US 
Angelcube – Melbourne, Australia
ProSiebenSat.1 Accelerator – Munich, Germany
GSF – Gurgaon, India
FounderFuel – Montreal, Canada
Luiss Enlabs – Rome, Italy
FastForward – Ramallah, Palestine
Distill Ventures – London, United Kingdom
JIC StarCube – Brno, Czech Republic
Parque Tec – San José, Costa Rica
Fit Startup Factory – Istanbul, Turkey

We encourage all accelerators to join the CrunchBase Venture Program.  Joining the Venture Program is free and  allows firms to report through spreadsheets to make sure their investment portfolio is accurately represented.  CrunchBase actively promotes upcoming accelerator deadlines in our weekly events email which reach a quarter of a million readers.

VCs Stop, Collaborate And Listen To Teamwork Tech

VCs Stop, Collaborate And Listen To Teamwork Tech

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of a TechCrunch article by Christine Magee.

While we struggle to set up a group Skype chat and create Google Sheets to organize our list of Google Docs, a new generation of venture-backed startups are building new tools to change the way we collaborate.

Investors are more excited about teamwork tech than ever. According to CrunchBase data, collaboration tech companies raised nearly $1 billion in venture funding in 2014 — a 65% jump from 2013’s total of $547 million. Last quarter’s $333 million is by far the highest amount of capital committed in a single quarter to date.

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Venture Investors Put $2 Billion Into The Blackboard Jungle

Venture Investors Put $2 Billion Into The Blackboard Jungle

Editor’s Note: This is a repost of a TechCrunch article by Christine Magee.

Venture capitalists really hit the books in 2014. Edtech companies stockpiled nearly $2 billion in venture funding — a 50% jump from 2013.

For millions of children in the American education system, more venture money doesn’t necessarily translate to a better education. The U.S., which has seen over 75% of the EdTech capital committed in the past five years, still trails behind the worldwide average in K-12 education scores.

Until recently, the majority of the startup community has been absent in discussions around education reform. Entrepreneurs and venture investors have largely ignored the K-12 market and made bigger bets on adult education startups instead — like professional edtech platform lynda.com, whose $186 million raised in January is the largest edtech financing seen in the past six years, according to CrunchBase data.

Now the results from edtech’s banner year are in, and it appears a revival in K-12 investing is underway. Continue reading

Startup Calendar for February 17th

Featured events this week:

Other events:

As well as ten accelerator programs:

Read the weekly newsletter for more. To take part in this program as an organization that hosts startup events, visit the Startup Calendar page for guidelines and send us an email at events@crunchbase.com. We look forward to hearing from you!