• Strong, passionate entrepreneurial team ... significant content and intangibles

  • Right market timing ... readiness

  • Bright-line competitive differentiation.... idea/concept, revenue model, customer experience, delivery scheme

INVESTMENT CRITERIA, PROFILE ​

CURRENT PORTFOLIO 


  • Tipsi:  'Wine retailer/consumer and diner/restaurant wine data app/platform ... a wine data application/platform that allows retailers and restaurants to optimize wine sales and overall consumer/diner satisfaction and provides consumers/diners a “sommelier-in-a-pocket” and digital wine cellar (investment, fund raising, advisory, governance).

  • Hawthorne's Market:  E-grocery/fresh market retailer ... a unique, profitable e-grocery format combining the best of convenient, on-line shopping and in-store fresh shopping experience in high-density, urban neighborhoods (investment, fund raising, advisory, governance).

  • CapLinked:  Cloud app for secure enterprise sharing and security services... positioned as the "go-to" place for setting up and closing deals among financial institutions, advisory and legal firms, corporates (investment, advisory, governance).

  • Long Island Iced Tea:  new entry into the non-CSD arena ....a ready-to-drink tea addressing the quality / mid-price quadrant and with well-known brand name with profile to carry flavor expansion and potential alcohol mix developments (investment, advisory).

  • Obsess:  Virtual Reality platform for experiential shopping.... enables Brands and Retailers to create immersive, branded, discovery-based shopping experiences that work on the web and in VR headsets (investment, advisory).

  • GoParrot:  AI-based chat platform ....enables customers to view menus, make inquiries, and place orders with their favorite restaurants over chat channels (investment, advisory).

  • Toonimo:  an interactive audio-video tutorial.... overlay delivering a human touch in a digital world, suitable for a wider use case mix in making complex web applications more straightforward, intuitive for vastly improved UX, e.g., bank statements, mortgage approvals/monitoring, insurance applications (advisory, fund raising)

  • Ooot:  Endurance sports nutrition support system ... venture built around a series of a convenient solid food forms that fuel like a gel (food, no goo), coupled with a highly functional, easy-to-use metering package to deliver nutrition during the race (advisory, fund raising).

  • Lighting for Impact:  Innovative solution for bringing power to the retail shelf....provides a full line of LED lighting solutions to bring a much more attractive, attention-grabbing shopping experience for customers and retailers (advisory).

  • GenoStyle:  Consumer and brand/retailer shopping platform ....allows fashion brands, retailers to understand, articulate style preferences and behaviors,  giving customers a truly personalized experience and retailers the ability to optimize commercial/merchandising decisions (advisory, fund raising).

  • Strong cash flow and margin economics

  • Clear market development/revenue roadmaps, ramp-scale options, adjacencies​

  • Avenues for managing upside/downside risks

ACTIVE INVESTMENTS PROFILE ​

GoParrot

GoParrot uses proprietary AL-based software that allows restaurant group venues/brands to have a direct chat-based (FaceBook Messenger, for example) communication/connection with their customers, without the intrusive 3rd-party ordering/delievery intermediary and without the pain endured by customers in having to download and maintain a multitude of restaurant-specific apps.  Chat allows restaurants to interact with their customers re inquiries dealing with order placement, reservations, special event promotions, and other outreach initiatives.  Restaurants own the content, the customer relatioships and the data....using all to motivate frequency, loyalty, and retention.  GoParrot materially improves the restaurant's economics by eliminating excessive fees taken by 3rd-parties and through revenue lift (frequency, ticket size).  The GoParrot platform is seamless in that the platform has integration capabilities to smoothly connect with the restaurant's existing approaches in order management, kitchen line ops, checkout/PoS, delivery solutions/contractors, and marketing schemes.  And, it's cool....the way people  communicate!   

The founders have strong AI and data/engineering expertise, as well as 15  plus years of startup experience.  GoParrot is raising a pre-seed round with funding used to drive technology platform extensions and restaurant acquisition.

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Market-driven, Customer-Centric Ventures Investing ... Acceleration

Long Island Iced Tea

Long Island Iced Tea is an offering of 100% brewed black team and purified water ....non-GMO, gluten-free.  The product is offered in numerous flavors, packages and is brewed locally ('Made in America"). Long Island Iced Tea was developed/launched in 2011 as a limited line, local brand/offering.   The brand/product line is now being  substantially broadened, and retail distribution is being expanded beyond the Northeast region and throughout the National market.  Addressing the highly competitive non-CSD space, Long Island Iced Tea is well differentiated  through its high-quality, mid-price point positioning.   

Long Island Iced Tea has recently completed a $6.9 raise and began trading on the Nasdaq Capital Market July 29, 2016.  Proceeds from the raise will fund an accelerated revenue ramp, distribution network build-out, product development and  working capital.

CapLinked

CapLinked  provides an effective means to securely share information across multiple enterprises, making it easier, faster and safer to manage business transactions in the cloud.  Globally recognized customers in over 40 countries use CapLinked ......principal use cases include:  due diligence, client onboarding/KYC, licensing, business development and corporate development repository, investor reporting, deal marketing, and all manner of other secure document sharing.  Inc. named CapLinked to its list of "5 Back-office Tech Innovations".

CapLinked has completed several funding rounds and, with product  build-out complete, is in the process of  filling out the enterprise customer portfolio and ramping ACV.  
  ​

Great businesses are built by passionate entrepreneurs with an idea and an exceptional understanding of the customer and the marketplace

​Hawthorne Markets

Hawthorne’s is a highly differentiated e-commerce/ marketplace (fresh/organic, nutritious food and value-conscious center-store staples), combining an e-grocery platform/app and in-store shopping/collection point  ... competitively differentiated, bringing high growth and superior economics. 

Hawthorne's has pre-seed investment supporting consumer/neighborhood market research and concept/business plan development work.  The co-founders are in the course of a seed raise to fund the first-phase launch of hub-spoke stores in selected Chicago neighborhoods.

PORTFOLIO SUMMARY ​

Obsess VR

Obsess is a Virtual Reality platform for experiential shopping utilizing a software platform that enables Brands and Retailers to create immersive, branded, discovery-based shopping experiences on the web and in VR headsets.  The new 3D medium of VR/AR/MR is expected grow rapidly over the next few years, and soon it will be as necessary for Brands to have virtual stores as it is to have online stores today.  The technology Obsess is building is targeted at powering the next generation of retail experiences for Gen Z and millennial consumers....the "Shopify of VR".


The founding team has experience across Google, Microsoft, Vogue, GQ, and various startups.  The first deployment of the Obsess technology was at New York Fashion Week in February 2017 in partnership with Samsung.  Obsess has just raised a pre-seed investment round for accelerating platform development efforts, including funding from a NY TechStars award.

 Tipsi

Tipsi is simplifying the business of wine by offering a suite of digital services to wine merchants/retailers, restaurants, and beverage event producers.  Tipsi's mobile inventory management system, combined with its proprietary 1m+ beverage product database, allows clients to easily create and manage customized digital marketing solutions tailored to their specific needs.  Solutions include:  restaurant web wine lists, menu pairings and master sommelier notes;  digital tasting books; and, indoor inventory mapping for wine retailers to adapt the business of wine to the next generation of emerging wine consumers.


For wine consumers/diners, Tipsi offers access to 4k+ restaurant wine lists representing hundreds of thousands of unique wines and associated content, including winemaker's notes, professional ratings, and detailed origin and varietal information ....down to the appellation and vineyard level for each wine.  The free Tipsi consumer app is available for use now in major markets, including New York City, Washington, D.C., Chicago, San Francisco and Napa and Sonoma Valleys....and, more metro areas are in build-out phases. 

Tipsi has completed several rounds of seed fundraising focused on data/product development and the diner/restaurant platform.  Tipsi  has just concluded the first close on its Series A Preferred Shares offering, led by Asper Group, in a raise to support its wine shopper app /merchant-retailer platform development and revenue ramp throughout several major metro areas.