February 2017

 

Funding Announcements

 
TerrAvion helps farms improve yield and revenue through enabling informed agricultural decisions based on geospatial data and multispectral imagery. The team raised a $10.5 million Series A led by Merus Capital, with participation from Promus Ventures and Initialized Capital. TerrAvion will use the funds to further expand its presence in key agricultural areas such as the Great Plains, Mississippi Delta and Pacific Northwest. Promus Ventures led TerrAvion's 2014 seed round. 
 
Caterpillar Ventures announced a strategic investment in Airware, which provides end-to-end solutions that turn aerial data into actionable business intelligence for enterprises. The investment allows Airware to accelerate programs that enable dealers to offer solutions and services within the construction, mining and quarrying industries. Read more on the investment here.
 

 

Highlights

The amount that businesses will lose globally due to bad weather this year is estimated to be $2.8 trillion. “Weather impacts everything we do. Extreme variations in weather are occurring with greater frequency and since we do not have access to proper data to predict weather more accurately, we are losing trillions of dollars,” says Peter Platzer, founder and CEO, Spire. Spire is building a constellation of small satellites to make weather forecasts more accurate and track maritime and aviation traffic.

More Spire news:
Erkin Adylov, CEO and Founder of Behavox, has created an enterprise compliance software company which provides holistic employee surveillance solutions for the financial services industry. Hedge fund, Marshall Wace, and interdealer broker, TP ICAP Plc, already use Behavox to monitor employees, and some of the biggest investment banks and commodities dealers in the world have partnered with Behavox. After paying fines of more than $200 billion in the past eight years, banks are looking to companies like Behavox to help them mitigate regulatory compliance costs.

Other Behavox news:
 
Forbes: "Navdy is a very good head-up display and has features not found in even some high-end OEM HUDs. And the fact that it can be added to almost any vehicle makes it a great companion for commuters who want to keep their eyes on the road while staying connected."
 
PC Magazine gives Navdy an "Excellent" rating. "The Navdy adds head-up display technology to any vehicle made after 1996 to help keep your eyes on the road and your hands off your phone."

Other recent reviews include FortuneUSA Today, Entrepreneur, MacRumors, Men's HealthGadget Flow10 Reasons You Should Get Navdy, Favorite Automotive Innovations from CES 2017.
 
Purchase Navdy online, at Amazon, or at Best Buy.

The June Intelligent Oven is a powerful and easy-to-use artificial intelligence-based oven that makes cooking easy and fun. Watch Michelin star chef Michael Mina's review on June. Other recent reviews include Business Insider, Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch and Gizmodo.

Purchase the June Intelligent Oven online
  • Kensho Technologies empowers financial institutions with technology that brings transparency to markets by pioneering real-time statistical computing systems and scalable analytics architectures. 
  • CrowdFlower is an artificial intelligence and human-in-the-loop platform for data science teams that enables customers to generate high-quality, customized training data for their machine learning initiatives.
  • Cape Analytics uses artificial intelligence to instantly and automatically extract proprietary property data from geospatial imagery to better enable the insurance and financial managers.
  • Gigster uses data science and artificial intelligence to change the way software is created by developing intelligent tools powered by data from thousands of past projects. 

WHOOP Founder and CEO Will Ahmed was interviewed by Charlie Rose to discuss founding WHOOP, the future of performance and their study with Major League Baseball.
 
Other recent WHOOP reviews include Inc Magazine, Sports Illustrated, Digital TrendsWell+Good and Wearable.
 
Swift Navigation co-founders Fergus Noble and Colin Beighley were honored in the 2017 Forbes 30 Under 30 Consumer Technology list. Swift Navigation provides centimeter-accurate real-time kinematics GPS and GNSS positioning technology for autonomous vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles, precision agriculture, robotics, surveying, space applications and more.

More Swift Navigation news:

Layer worked with Microsoft to provide messaging tools for the World Economic Forum mobile app in Davos, Switzerland that allowed users to send and receive messages real time to each other in their native languages. 
Bellabeat's Leaf smart jewelry line appeals to women interested in looking good, improving fitness and getting their correct body health metrics. The Leaf Urban combines the user’s data into an easy to understand graphic, focusing on how to best deal with stress.

Other recent reviews include US WeeklyTechCrunchWearable and PC Magazine.

Purchase Bellabeat online or at Amazon.
Tulip Retail is a mobile application platform built for retail stores and sales associates dedicated to store associate empowerment. Tulip announced that many of the world’s top retail brands have continued to sign on with the company’s mobile suite in 2016, including Saks Fifth Avenue, Hudson’s Bay, Bonobos, Coach, Toys”R”Us, Kate Spade and more.

More Tulip Retail news:

Prism Skylabs uses the Computer Vision API from Microsoft Cognitive Services to help organizations search through closed-circuit and security camera footage for specific events, items and people. Businesses can now search, analyze and categorize their videos automatically with artificial intelligence, saving huge manual effort. Watch the video for more details.

Kurbo is a mobile health coaching app designed specifically for kids, teens and families. Kurbo helps users make smarter eating and exercise decisions and develop healthy habits.

More Kurbo news:
 
AltspaceVR and social VR has already begun to deliver on VR's promise of an "empathy engine," using the medium to connect real people from around the world.

More AltspaceVR news:
 
Swift Navigation and Mapbox discussed how developments in mapping and location technology will enhance safety, bring about truly autonomous cars and improve our understanding of demographics and the urban environment at a presentation at the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association.


Promus Ventures Job Board:

The Promus Ventures' Community Job Board currently has more than 250 real-time job posts from startups in the PV Community.


Promus Ventures Blog


Speaking Engagements and Conferences

 
SmallSat Symposium - San Francisco - Feb 6-8

OnRamp Insurance Conference - Chicago - Apr 6

 


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Managing Partner
 

Julian Cheng
Vice President
 
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